Measure the impact

With the abundance of audience and campaign insights that programmatic buying affords, brands can get better answers to their questions and make better decisions than ever before. In the area of brand measurement, brands can finally understand if their ads were seen and if they reached the right audience. They can learn what audiences thought about their ads and if they changed perception. Also, they can review what audiences did as a result of seeing their ads. In the area of attribution, it's now possible to analyze the purchase path and understand which of the many audience touchpoints influences action the most. In addition, brands now have access to measurement and attribution solutions that are user-first, open and actionable.

  1. User-first

    Measurement solutions have to be rooted in audiences insights.

  2. Open

    The industry must collaborate on accessible, universal and meaningful metrics.

  3. Actionable

    Solutions must include real-time metrics that let brands optimize campaigns immediately, not in weeks or months.

84% of marketing and advertising professionals say better measurement would increase digital spending by 25% or more.
- “Brand Measurement,” Sterling Research commissioned by Google, November 2013

Why it matters

Brands know measurement is important because they use it to evaluate their media investments and improve their media and creative strategies. What's different today is the speed and actionability of measurement that's been made possible by programmatic buying and integrated platforms. These ad technologies power a real-time feedback loop that helps brands make every impression and every digital interaction smarter than the last. Brands no longer have to settle for reports that are available days, weeks or months after a campaign runs. Instead, programmatic technologies base automatic optimizations on real-time feedback.

Chrome maximized brand visibility with use of ActiveView targeting on DoubleClick Bid Manager. Viewable impressions nearly doubled while viewable CPM decreased by 50%.
- Google internal data, Q3 2014

How to succeed

Follow these steps to infuse brand measurement into a programmatic buying feedback loop:

  1. Get brand ads in view

    Use programmatic buying to target viewable impressions and ensure ads are seen. Specifically, a display impression counts as viewable when 50 percent of an ad unit is in view on a screen for a minimum of 1 second.

    Did you know?

    56.1% of all impressions are not seen, while the average publisher viewability is 50.2%

    - "The Importance of Being Seen: Viewability Insights for Digital Marketers and Publishers" study, Google, November 2014
  2. Understand audience reach and composition

    Use an integrated digital GRP tool to measure if campaigns are reaching the right audience in real time and make adjustments if they aren't.

  3. Measure brand lift in real-time

    Use integrated survey lift tools to generate real-time feedback on ad recall and brand awareness. Use the results to learn, for instance, what frequency maximizes ad recall and which audiences drive the highest lift in brand awareness. Also, study search lift, which describes how brand ads change search behavior among exposed audiences. Look at which ads resonated the most beyond traditional clicks and conversions by measuring intent in the form of incremental related searches. Share survey lift and search lift results with creative and brand strategy teams to iterate and improve upon digital campaigns.

  4. Use a custom attribution model

    Invest in custom cross-channel attribution models to understand all digital touchpoints, not just the touchpoints that produced the last click, and how they relate to conversions. Test different custom models to find the model that provides the most accurate view of the touchpoints that are doing the most to influence audiences to take action.

Case study

See how Kellogg's uses programmatic to effectively engage their consumers

  1. Kellogg Company

    The Kellogg Company is the world's leading cereal company, second largest producer of cookies, crackers and savory snacks, and a leading North American frozen foods company. With over a dozen brands to manage, the company uses programmatic buying with DoubleClick Digital Marketing to deliver the right message to the right person based on insights about their consumer. DoubleClick has made it easy for Kellogg's to optimize their three key performance indicators (KPIs), which are viewability, targeting index and frequency. For example, when Kellogg focused on optimizing their media for views, their ad viewability went from a 56% viewability to upwards of a 70% viewability. The unified buying platform gives Kellogg’s the confidence that programmatic buying is an efficient and effective way to engage their consumers.

Executive summary

  • Step 1 – Organize audience insights
  • Step 2 – Design compelling creative
  • Step 3 – Execute with integrated technology
  • Step 4 – Reach audiences across screens
Step 5 - Measure the impact

Adopt user-first, open and actionable brand measurement and attribution capabilities to make sure consumers see ads, understand how ads impact consumer perception and measure what consumers do after ad exposure.

  • Use programmatic buying to target viewable impressions and ensure ads are seen.
  • Understand audience reach and composition with an integrated digital GRP tool.
  • Use brand lift tools to generate real-time feedback on ad recall and brand awareness. Use these results to iterate and improve digital campaigns.
  • Find the attribution model that provides the most accurate view of all digital touchpoints, informs how each touchpoint relates to conversions, and uncovers the most effective touchpoints at influencing audiences to take action.

Programmatic buying is a leap forward to integrated, actionable measurement

The measurement capabilities surrounding programmatic buying help brands deeply understand the impact of their digital marketing efforts in real-time and allow brands to act on these insights quickly. Innovations in measurement, such as those in the areas of viewability, digital GRP, brand lift, organic search lift and attribution modelling, are turning brand measurement from a weakness of digital to a strength. The overall aim for brand measurement in digital is to be as actionable as direct response is today. These innovations help brands get very close to this goal.

A guide compiled by