It’s a Matter of Trust

A 2018 marketing priorities survey by “World Advertising Research Center” (WARC) made two declarations:

  1. Digital agencies don’t trust media partners.
  2. Clients don’t trust digital agencies.

This is reflected in another study finding – the biggest 2018 marketing industry concern is viewability and accurate measurement.  Is the lack of trust a product of media partners & agencies being purposefully deceptive?   It could be – but I think that’s the exception and not the rule.  The massively complicated technical dance required to advertise digitally is at play as well – and may be the primary driver of lack of trust.

Client to digital agency:

“You mean well, and you may be doing a fine job for the most part.  I just don’t trust what you are reporting because I’m not confident you understand it.  I am tempted to think you avoid reporting what would put your service in a negative light”.

57% of creative agencies and 52% of media agencies agreed that there is a crisis of trust between media agencies and clients. More than half (51%) of brands surveyed shared that sentiment. What’s the answer?

Gain Trust by Eliminating Digital Advertising Waste

Invest in measuring success accurately, with attribution tuned to your client’s business model, in a manner robust enough to cover multiple ad platforms and all traffic sources.  Once you do, the most impactful & obvious optimization will be to eliminate digital advertising waste.  You’ll be tempted to hide this from your client – maybe to avoid the embarrassment – maybe because the most wasteful digital advertising often yields your highest profit margin.

Don’t hide it.  Completely eliminate digital advertising waste, and transparently let your client know about it & why.  They may be upset to know they were wasting budget – but ultimately you will gain their trust.  Trust that will eventually help them to believe what you are reporting, and when they trust your measurement of success, good & bad news alike, in the long run they will increase budgets for what’s working.

Shift the Needle

There’s no easier way to benefit your clients than to figure out what is not working, and stop doing that.  Craig Sullivan, famous for his “salty” way of putting things – makes this point clear.  Although the graphic below is from Craig’s Conversions @ Google November 2017 presentation about testing, it applies here as well.  The easiest, most impactful way to shift the needle for your clients is to simply eliminate what’s broken.  Step one is to figure out what’s broken, and iDimension is here to help.

Craig Sullivan Conversions @ Google November 2017
Viewability and Accurate Measurement are Biggest 2018 Marketing Industry Concerns