Sunday, March 06, 2011

4As, ANA & IAB Talk New Currency For Online Media. Here's What They're Missing.

The 4As, ANA and IAB are trying to come up with a new currency for online media.

The goal is to define metrics and measurement systems so as to simplify planning, buying and evaluating digital media, and come up with a common currency for measuring online exposures and developing a methodology for cross media measurement.

Right.

According to Bob Liodice, President and CEO of the ANA, "It is indeed time for the industry leaders to develop a ‘currency' that is widely and consistently accepted and adopted. Online media has an abundance of metrics, but none that serve as currency across the ecosystem. This process will allow the industry to use consistent measurements to evaluate a program's return."

Across the ecosystem. Well, then aren’t they missing something? Like the creative aspect of the message itself.

Isn’t that part of the ecosystem?

Media is an opportunity to see an advertisement. It is the creative that determines how well the advertisement actually works. Or, doesn’t work.

I don’t hear the 4As, the ANA or the IAB talking about that.

But think about it. If there were a Currency of Creative, what would it be?

In other words, in a perfect world, how would agencies like to be paid for their creative? In this same world, how would advertisers like to pay their agencies for their creative output?

Great creative agencies often wonder why they can’t be paid based on how good they are. “Good”, of course, has to be defined through they eyes of the advertiser.

What’s good creative to an advertiser?

Sales?

Obviously that’s the desired end result. But I’m talking about what needs to happen before a sale takes place.

Most advertisers would say that sales are dependent on the commercial being watched, not just seen. And, not just part of it being watched, but all of it. In other words, view duration can serve as a proxy for sales. Not 100%, mind you. But it’s about as close of an approximation as current measurement metrics can currently give us.

Can we measure view duration? Certainly.

So why isn’t that one of the metrics being talked about by the 4As, ANA and IAB? Go ahead and refer to it as the Currency of Creative so the media people won’t freak out feeling that they're accountable for view duration.

But, for Pete’s sakes, at least start referring to it.

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