By 2020, digital marketing ad spend across the world is expected to reach a collective – wait for it – 335 billion dollars to grab the ever-increasing prospects of connecting with customers online. However, this great opportunity for success also comes with an increasing chance of failure – in fact, a CoSchedule survey found that only 6% of marketing teams are able to always meet their campaign goals.
It is no doubt a tough place out there for today’s digital marketer, and to say that competition is fierce is a grand understatement. With every passing day, it becomes more challenging to catch the attention of a customer, and the list of challenges keeps getting longer. If your marketing strategy is unable to defend itself from common threats, there is no way that it can ever be effective. Let’s discuss how digital marketers can defend themselves again three major campaign killers.
Click Fraud – Invest in PPC Protection
Search Engine Marketing is the lifeblood for smaller businesses to get their names on the map. PPC campaigns can offer incredibly high returns (Google reports that businesses earn $8 for every $1 they spend on their platform) as well as that initial push for brand awareness.
Automated click fraud occurs when online bots are programmed to click on paid advertising links in order to sabotage PPC costs and diminish return rates. Sadly, this devious strategy is quite common for businesses with fierce competitors vying for ad placement space. In 2016, a staggering 20% of online advertisers’ budgets were wasted due to fraudulent clicks and invalid traffic.
Detecting click fraud after the fact can help you put a stop to it, but it is much better to protect yourself before it occurs. This is where machine learning comes to the rescue. AI-based fraud detection systems such as ClickCease work much better at click fraud prevention by integrating with all your Google or Bing PPC campaigns and tracking every click to determine whether or not it is valid. As soon as suspicious activity is identified, ClickCease will block the IP or proxy server from future engagement. Further, it automatically creates reports for AdWords refunds with detailed documentation on the fraudulent interactions.
Any good marketer worth his salt knows that an unprotected campaign runs the risk of click fraud from sneaky competitors. Investing in click fraud protection could save your campaign from utter failure.
Missed Engagement – Measure Brand Sentiment
It is very difficult to accurately gauge your audience’s view of your brand. To give you an idea, 85% of brands surveyed by mobile operator Unlocked believed that their mobile ads provided a positive experience for their customers, yet, nearly half of the customers completely disagreed!
Take the clothing company Gap as a great example of sentiment disconnect. While the retailer was a huge hit in the 90s and early 2000s, sales were slipping as they failed to capture the attention of younger consumers. Their marketing team sought to rebrand with a new logo in trendy Helvetica font and pack their advertising campaign with celebrities.
However, their efforts did nothing to sway their intended audience which still considered the brand to be geared to an older audience. Gap eventually scrapped the redesign and reverted back to their original logo.
This misadventure costed them an estimated $100 million. Ouch!
Brand sentiment is all about the way that consumers view a brand, and what words and descriptions they associate that business with. Failing to measure this important detail could derail a marketing campaign instantly.
This is a complex endeavor fraught with uncertainty and potentially missed data. Sentiment analysis software makes this task much easier, and systems like Rapidminer can offer your business a subjective analysis for more accurate reporting. By extracting information from digital sources like online reviews and social media mentions, Rapidminer gathers insights to evaluate the overall attitude that your audience has towards your brand vis-à-vis industry trends. It will also identify the best channels to reach them and gather feedback from ongoing campaigns for a complete report.
Accurately assessing brand reaction and audience response is so important for marketing teams because it helps them better understand the cause of their results. This is a non-monetary result from advertising campaigns that many “ROI-driven” reports fail to catch or measure. By using a sentiment analysis tool that breaks down the context of every brand mention, marketers can identify opportunities for positive engagement in future and address areas of weakness in the brand messaging.
Stagnant Targeting – Gather Data and Experiment
The marketing world is constantly changing, and strategies or ads that worked one day may be irrelevant the next. In fact, using the same advertisements repeatedly could cause branding fatigue, in essence pushing your audience to disengage and become bored.
Which is why marketing campaigns must be data driven in order to be successful. Where does this data come from, you ask? Why, from your customers! Nearly 60% of consumers surveyed by Salesforce in their State of the Connected Customer report said they were willing to share more information if a business sends them personalized content as a result. In fact, they actually expect brands to use their personal information for better recommendations, prices, customizations and service.
Make sure to monitor customer touchpoints, social media, competitors’ sites, and other digital platforms religiously, bearing in mind the right industry keywords, in order to compile the necessary data for more targeted strategies. Then use this data to your advantage for a deeper understanding of your target audience. Remaining stagnant with targeting campaigns could eventually diminish your hard work, and eventually, reduce reach. Don’t be afraid to experiment with your digital marketing; you never know when you will strike gold.
Take ‘Em On!
There are more obstacles in a marketing team’s path today than ever before. We must constantly stay on our toes to protect our campaigns from sabotage or “Duh” inducing mistakes that could bring all our hard work to a disastrous halt.
By staying aware of and dealing with possible pitfalls, accurately gauging audience sentiment, and bravely trying out new strategies, marketing teams can combat their fiercest opponents and come out on top.