Thursday, June 05, 2008

How To Pay For "Search Branding".

If you haven't yet read the article by Gord Hotchkiss called "Branding, The Mind and Search," do so now. Mr. Hotchkiss explains how a searching mindset is a more engaged mind, and therefore, a very different mindset than that we have when watching TV.

Here's a particularly interesting quote from the article: "Once consumers have knocked on your door through search, you have a tremendous opportunity to engage them. They have expressed interest, they are actively and fully engaged, they're looking for information and they are ready to be persuaded."

If you're an advertiser, that's right where you want your audience to be, isn't it?

Now, let's say that instead of being taken to a website when the searcher clicked on the search ad, they were taken to a branding video (i.e. commercial).

Go back and read the quote again. Because the fact is, whether going to a website or a branding video, the mindset of the "searcher" is the same. They're knocking on the advertiser's door.

Let's say that the brand video was sixty seconds in length. And let's say after two weeks, the duration data showed that of those who clicked on the search ad, the average time spent with the brand video was 20 seconds.

In other words, the advertiser paid their creative shop for 60 seconds worth of engagement and they ended up only getting one third of that. And this from those that were, according to Mr. Hotchkiss, "actively engaged," when they initially encountered the brand video.

So, here's the question. Should the advertiser be required to pay their creative shop full-fare for the 2/3rds of the brand video that obviously didn't work?

Google allows advertisers to pay only when someone clicks on the search ad. That seems fair, doesn't it? Why should an advertiser pay for ad if it doesn't work?

Shouldn't then advertisers also be allowed to apply the same principle to the creative content itself? In other words, pay their creative shops based on time-spent with the message. The more time-spent, the more the agency would make. The less time-spent, the less the agency would make.

Is it possible?

The duration data, as we all now know, is available from a multitude of sources. And there is a model called DAOS which does monetize time-spent, so that advertisers can start rewarding their creative agencies based on outcome rather than effort.

So the answer is yes.

It's interesting to listen to advertisers proclaim that new models need to be invented before they can change their ways.

Perhaps it's not so much invention, as implementation, that advertisers should be focusing on.

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