While the term “digital ad” seems self-explanatory at first, it’s important for the success of your own digital ad campaign to recognize that the concept takes on a plethora of forms. Preparation is key, and will ultimately save you money in the long run. Proper planning begins with a well-defined goal. When formulating a digital ad campaign, you must first identify the broad category that best suits your overall objective—acquisition, monetization, or engagement.
Digital ad campaigns that focus on acquisition are concerned with acquiring new prospects or customers.
Campaigns that emphasize monetization strive to generate revenue from existing leads/customers.
Campaigns preoccupied with engagement endeavor to create communities of promoters and brand advocates.
Narrowing Down Your Digital Ad Campaign Type
Once you’ve decided your broad purpose, you can then explore the available variations of digital advertising that best suit your campaign:
According to AdSkills –
Display Ads “are the original form of online advertising, these are visual ads that appear on third party websites (usually ones that are related to your content or service in some way).” Display ads encompass static images, text, floating banners, pop-up ads, flash, and video.
Social Media Ads are “great because you can target your audience perfectly. For example, Facebook’s targeting options include age, region, interests, educational background and more.” In 2015, Social Media commerce totaled $30 billion in the US. It’s a marketing arena that is not only efficient but effective, especially when using social media influencers to boost your message.
Search Engine Marketing (SEM) “SEM works based on keywords – you and other businesses like yours bid on keywords through search engines in an effort to get your website up higher on the Search Engine Results Page (SERP).”
Native Advertising is integrated content that appears similar in form and style to the content of the website on which it is served. People sometimes call this “advertorial.”
*Video Ads “such as YouTube ads, are the most popular and well-known forms of advertising.” Up your game with video pre-roll advertising.
Advertise.com recommends focusing on Video Advertising to obtain the best possible results for your Digital Ad Campaign.
Analyze the Success or Failure of Past Digital Ad Campaigns
When assessing a direction for your current ad campaign, addressing marketing successes and failures from the past can be a great help. You can start by evaluating which campaigns worked and why. According to Harvard Business Review, the “holy grail” of marketing is “knowing precisely how all the moving parts of a campaign collectively drive sales and what happens when you adjust them.” Analyzing your cost-per-acquisition data in conjunction with sales generated will allow you to tease apart a past ad’s success or lack thereof. Additionally, assessing final outcomes in comparison to initial goals will allow you to estimate how close your digital ad campaign was to meeting its mark.
Consider Your Digital Ads Budget
Because we live in the digital age, it has become much easier to track an ad’s success. That means ROI can be more precisely calculated, and money invested in programs that work. When planning a new digital ad campaign, consider the cost of different ad types, your expected timeframe for the campaign, your CPA – versus how much you stand to make from that acquisition, the cost of producing your ads, and any other overhead that goes into managing your campaign. Make yourself a detailed budget, and calculate expected ROI. If the ROI fits, run your digital ad campaign.
Online Advertising Personnel
Intrinsic to your budgetary concerns is the concept of personnel. In order to create your digital ad campaign, the presence of writers, designers, and analytics managers need be addressed. Establishing a strong team with a common goal is of the utmost importance, and assessing which departments will benefit your ad most significantly is also an important facet in the preparation process. For instance, if your ad will rely heavily on eye-catching colors and designs, your creative team should be your most poignant focus. On the other hand, if you intend for your ad to make a statement through text or a powerful message, your writers will take center stage. Overall, a successful ad encompasses all of these things and, thus, every team member need to be carefully considered.
Timing is Everything
Consider the timing of your digital ad campaign, especially when and how long it will run. An ad campaign needs to run long enough to allow traffic to build, but it also needs to remain fresh and relevant. Many advertisers also consider seasons, the calendar year, or holidays as part of the timing of their campaigns. Unfortunately, there is not a one-size fits all solution for the timing of your online ad campaign, but the duration, and timing of your campaign is an important issue to consider when planning your digital ad spend.