Tag Archives: CTR

Next to Now: Sept 16


The Wall Street Journal reports on how the millennial news platform .Mic is rethinking video sponsorship. Mic is allowing advertisers to sponsor their highly popular videos on Facebook:

“Instead of selling…ads based on content genre or audience demographics, Mic is putting its editorial videos into categories, such as clips that elicit emotions or videos that celebrate innovation—two popular genres that typically incite people to share, and letting advertisers run ads next to these types of videos.”

While this kind of sponsorship is not useful for any book that needs time to tell its story, it could be very interesting for a book with immediate appeal to millennials with a high education and relatively high HHI.

#mic #facebook #news



Have you played around with Google’s Display Ad benchmark tool recently? It can be very useful for setting expectations. Click-through rates seem to be going down across the board. If you set it for U.S. Book ads, the display CTRs range from .04-.6% depending on the size. Mobile only sizes such as 320×50 fare a little better with a .18% CTR. While this is certainly the case for the industry as a whole, Verso’s own click-through rates continue to beat industry averages—ranging from about .10% for desktop to twice that for mobile.

#CTR #Google #data #benchmarks



Long a staple of advertising plans for all manner of products, out-of-home advertising has gained a new edge with digital billboards. Digital capabilities mean advertisers can move much more quickly on campaigns instead of having to plan six to eight months ahead for each iteration. As CMO magazine puts it:

“The integration of data and technology means advertisers can tap into OOH like never before. ‘And it’s really shifting into bringing back the things that digital has kind of lost–the sensory experiences, feelings, and interactions.'”

There’s a reason spending on out of home advertising continues to grow.

#billboards #OOH #digital



As part of IAB’s recent podcast upfronts, ESPN announced that it’s bringing it’s acclaimed 30 for 30 series to podcasts. With in-depth reporting about sports news, 30 for 30 videos appeal to sports fans of a more thoughtful bent . . . which is to say, sports fans who might be inclined to buy books on a subject in an effort to go deeper than in-game color commentary or talk show style chatter.  For book publishers who might not be able to afford a :30 ad on ESPN, running mid-roll on a podcast might be a highly targeted ad solution.

#sports #podcasts #espn


Beyond the click through — updated

Two years ago I posted that advertisers need to move beyond the click through.

Things haven’t changed much it seems. MediaPost reported yesterday on new research by ad network and technology provider Collective that suggests that click through behavior does not closely track buyer behavior. Some highlights:

> Online gamers clicked 43% more often than non-gamers. But did they buy more?

> Users on mobile devices click 123% more often than users on laptops and desktops. But happens after the click?

> Here’s where you see the break between CTR and sales: “the highest-performing CTR campaigns examined (top 20%) had a 150% higher CTR but an 8% lower post-impression action rate.”

Of course CTR still matters. But it has to be looked at in conjunction with context, creative, impressions delivered, and sales.


Beyond the Click Through

From the beginning, online advertising has been touted as something altogether different from print, broadcast and outdoor—an advertising medium where you can truly measure results. Unfortunately, the reality is that when there is so much information to be had, it’s hard to know what’s worth focusing on. In fact, the full-on pursuit of ROI can distract not only from significant results but also from pursuing the kind of thinking we need to create truly innovative and effective marketing campaigns.

Most advertisers concentrate on click-through rate (CTR) as the definitive measure of any digital campaign. But several recent studies from comScore suggest that CTR is not the single most important measurement. By studying search, site traffic and consumer spending patterns, comScore has found a significant correlation between ad impact and consumer behavior for up to four weeks following ad exposure.

The Silent Clicke
from "The Silent Click"—(c) 2009 Online Publishers Association and comScore

You can see from this graph that online ads have a powerful “display” function that resonates beyond the campaign itself, and is not measurable by CTR alone. As Forbes reported on a 2008 study, “comScore found readers were 46% more likely to visit an advertiser’s site within four weeks of seeing its ad online than they were if they did not view an ad.” Verso Digital’s own experience with campaigns for book publishers supports these findings.

Our own projects—on the Reader Channels and throughout the digital sphere—indicate that the most relevant campaign metric is often not CTR, but numbers that reveal other user behavior such as site visitation, engagement, and, most important, sales. While generating outstanding site-engagement, some of our most successful campaigns in fact showed only average to below-average CTRs. In one case, a pre-sales ad campaign for Thomas L. Friedman’s Hot, Flat and Crowded promoted free audio downloads. It led to over 99,000 downloads, 13,000 registered email addresses and 160,000+ users available for retargeting. In another case, an ad campaign promoting a key chain giveaway for John Grogan’s Bad Dogs Have More Fun led to over 100,000 people registering to learn more about the book. The publisher saw major traffic continuing for at least four weeks following the conclusion of the Verso Reader Channel ad campaign—with no additional publicity, promotion or advertising to support it.

CTR remains a useful metric, but only when considered in relationship to sales, traffic, search, and total impressions delivered. Campaigns on premium sites with a great book audience, such as the NYTimes.com, often generate CTRs well-above average. But because ads on the site are so expensive, the total number of people reached, and thus the total number of people who click through, is relatively small. For example, a $10,000 spend on a site with a $40 CPM results in 250,000 impressions delivered. When the CPM drops to $5, however, that same $10,000 delivers 2 million impressions. At a standard .1% CTR, $10,000 spent with a $40 CPM delivers 250 clicks. With a relatively below-average .05% CTR, $10,000 spent with a $5 CPM delivers 1,000 clicks. In this scenario, the campaign with the lower CTR actually performed better by delivering more users to the site. For this reason, CTR should always be considered hand-in-hand with total impressions delivered.

The goal of each new marketing campaign—and the measure of its success—must reflect the resources at hand and how you can best reach the community of potential readers. What doesn’t change is the need for flexible ideas and an ability to think through each niche effort in its full context.