Offering advertisers integrated media buys that include digital advertising as well as other media such as print, radio or television, is a powerful way for premium digital publishers to compete in a world where online advertising rates are under pressure and content has become commoditised.
Digital publishers who successfully package their content and advertising solutions as part of converged media bundles, can get an edge in the market by helping their clients to achieve better return on investment.
Advertisers don’t want to simply buy ads in different media anymore. They want to drive their campaigns in a more integrated manner so that the different mediums can intensify and reinforce their messaging. For example, they’re thinking about how elements such as social media can amplify broadcast campaigns or how banner ads can drive engagement with search.
Howzit MSN works with progressive clients such as Unilever on converged campaigns. The Kagiso Media-owned portal is working with eTV and lead sponsor Unilever on Glambition – a show where Jo-Ann Strauss, former Miss South Africa and renowned TV personality, celebrates the beauty and success of African women.
Glambition brings together a range of powerful brands, creating massive talkability and interest. The online elements – including the social conversations and the content we host – amplify the sponsor’s message and generates huge appeal in the television show. This in turn builds a powerful branding effect that adds up to far more than the sum of its parts.
“Unilever identified that there was a real lack of credible, engaging and entertaining African content that celebrated the beauty and achievements of African women. Glambition was a market-first in terms of actual content origination, content partnerships and multiple content platform usage, going against the traditional broadcast AFP and display advertising model, while leveraging heavily on social integration,” says Nazeer Suliman, Unilever’s CCM Director for Sub Saharan Africa.
For Howzit MSN, the key is understanding the client’s goals and how the greater media mix can help to get the optimal results from its advertising spending. This is an example of how publishers must evolve and transform to offer their advertising clients better value.
Another important element digital publishers must master is customer data. Our clients are starting to demand that we share data at a more granular level than ever before. Gone are the days when they were satisfied with clickthrough data only,” says Stephens. “They want to understand the customer journey in great detail so that they can optimise campaign messaging and spending across their marketing mix.
This obviously means that digital publishers need to spend more time with media planners and buyers at every point of the campaign. It’s all about creating a true solutions environment with multiple media touchpoints, backed up with the data and tools to plan, measure and report on performance.
The trend we’re seeing in the marketplace is that advertisers want to work with publishers who are well-informed about their target audience and truly understand their role in the bigger ecosystem. This is the key to digital publishers driving added value from their advertising inventory and growing their revenues.
Marcus Stephens is GM of Howzit MSN