Lucas Sommer, Director of Marketing at LeadsRX, began a webinar on Thursday (Sept. 10) with a time-honored — and still relevant — quote: “Half the money that I spend on advertising is wasted, but the trouble is that I don’t know which half.”
The good news, Sommer said, is that the 21st century proliferation of modern technology, as well as the sophistication of broadcast and digital campaigns, enables us to know which half is now working and driving performance.
That mission, and how it hopefully ends in a sales conversion, was the focus of “Digital vs. Broadcast Advertising: The Truth About Performance,” which emphasized that both channels working in tandem, and not separately, is what maximizes results.
The event also included insights from panelists Lisa Higgins, Director of Paid Media at MarketForce, and Tom Galati, Digital Sales Director at Diray Media.
Higgins said that in a world with an increasing number of digital options, streaming media presents an opportunity — and that it has for some time now, actually.
“I think it’s just more and more important now in this post-pandemic world, given the number of people that are streaming now that maybe weren’t before or have just increased how much they’re streaming,” she said. “On average in the U.S., consumers are spending essentially double the amount of time streaming media as they did before the pandemic. In terms of podcasts, we haven’t seen as much of an uptick just during the pandemic. But it’s important to note that within the last decade we’ve seen also about double the number of people that are actively listening to podcasts on a regular basis.
“It’s really important to consider streaming media in your total media mix because of the number of people that are going to see those ads… It’s reinforcing what you’re doing in some of the other channels, both offline and online.”
Galati, who noted that another benefit of podcasting is that it allows advertisements to be placed in close proximity to high-quality content, said streaming represents the intersection of linear television and digital. “You get the added benefit of all the great aspects that we love about digital from a targeting standpoint,” he said. “Also, being able to leverage sequential messaging, I think, is another benefit of streaming as well, where you can serve one ad to someone who has already seen a different type of ad… There is a lot that can be done to make these ads look like linear and act like digital.”
Sommer says LeadsRX has embraced podcast advertising, which is offering increasingly granular measurement opportunities.
“In order to track exposures to podcast advertising, we have special pixels used for downloads and for streaming,” said Sommer. “Our pixels capture the equivalent of an ad impression and allow us to pick up the listener’s IP address and mobile device ID that we later use to see if that same person visits the advertiser’s website. Because the advertiser’s site also has one of our pixels installed, we continue to track the visitor over time to see if they eventually convert by purchasing a product, filling out a form, or taking other digital action.”
As for traditional radio, Sommer said it remains a force when it comes to generating awareness and occupies a unique space in the overall media ecosystem, especially for those who fear the sometimes-crowded digital space.
“Radio is kind of this area where there’s some open space,” he said. “The CPMs are cheaper, and you can reach a wide swath of people for a relatively affordable price. When we look at radio advertising, we don’t go with the ‘spray-and-pray’ methodology. We segment things, up to several different custom dimensions. That could be your daypart, your creative, what network you’re on, what market you’re in... When we are able to deploy that radio-attribution tool, you start to figure out that the male vocalist who’s reading the ad is outperforming the other version, and Tuesdays and Thursdays during the daily commute is the best-performing daypart. So attribution applied to radio can really pull those insights out.”