The trouble with measuring integrated search and display ads

Fri 4 March 2011 15:21, J-P De Clerck

The trouble with measuring integrated search and display ads

For years, developers and service providers have worked to provide more and more ways for marketers to track their online marketing budgets. This has built a reputation for online marketing as being very measurable compared to more traditional channels. However, when it comes to integrating paid search and display campaigns, you might be surprised to hear that according to a report from Efficient Frontier and Forrester Consulting, 59% are using spreadsheets to track results. That doesn’t have a really “high tech” ring to it in this day and age, now does it?

The report found that 48% of respondents are using marketing analytics tools, 40% are using web analytics, with 35% using 3rd party ad servers and 33% using business intelligence tools or their own proprietary in-house tool.

So what’s stopping them from integrating their campaigns? What are the barriers as they see them?

40% of those surveyed cited not being able to measure the combined results and running a close second, 38% stated that limited budget was the issue. The next two segments are interesting because one may relate to the other. 35% said there was no single platform to manage both and 30% cited too many other priorities. In fact, if you look at the remaining stats, it becomes clear that perhaps one of the biggest issues for a sizable number of marketers is that they haven’t had a time to even consider an alternative/better solution.


This is what some call the “whack-a-mole” effect. You remember the carnival game, right? The mole’s head pops up randomly out of a hole and you try to smack it with a hammer. Many marketers are so busy just patching and appending that they don’t have time to even consider better alternatives and so they begin to believe that none actually exist.

In fact, they certainly do exist and what’s more, we are fast approaching the tipping point where if you don’t use an automation and optimization solution, you simply won’t be able to function and thus will not be able to compete effectively. I don’t have to explain what the result of the latter will be, do I? Marketers can’t procrastinate any longer on this issue and either must make or insist on being given the time and support to find and invest in solutions which allow for integration.

Complete integration both internally and externally for your marketing and CRM is simply not something you can put off any longer. Look at the numbers from this report and consider that it may well be that almost half your competitors are already using or at least investigating an integrated marketing solution. A solution which optimizes their resources and the customer experience – this is not a question for consideration anymore, this is an imperative.

Optimize the experience of the cross-channel consumer and enhance your marketing power by increasing your productivity with integrated management and reporting and that’s got to be a classic “win/win” situation.

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