Exploring the ROI challenge


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Discussions and presentations at the WFA's MEDIA and DIGITALFORUMs helped participating members  looking to monitor and improve the returns they achieve on marketing spend.

The areas of attribution and econometric modelling have proven particularly complex and two separate meetings in Paris and Stuttgart, hosted by Pernod Ricard and Daimler respectively, have identified three key areas for brands to consider in relation to their own approaches.

The first area centred on the need to be clear about roles and responsibilities in relation to improved understanding of marketing ROI and ROO.

  • Global teams should focus on a few core areas such as setting KPIs (key performance indicators), recommending tools and finding efficiencies.

  • They may also look to identify one or two key markets, the best and the worst performers, that can be used as benchmarks for other countries.

  • This approach will allow organisations identify baseline effectiveness principles or 'truths' that all markets can deploy, irrespective of whether they have the data to conduct a full modelling programme. Finally, whichever ROI tools and approaches are employed, brands need to involve their agency in the process to ensure that all findings are implemented.

The second key focus needs to be metrics, principally the need to identify factors that marketers can truly influence.

  • Delivering the right approach to metrics requires marketers to work across the company: success requires a cross-divisional data / measurement framework. This will often need help from IT to support and enable. It's critical to have a clear understanding of your customer journey in order to identify meaningful results in terms of understanding ROI.Econometric modelling might not be the right approach when marketers are focused more on ROO than ROI.

The final area identified by the two WFA Forums and speakers was the need to take a holistic approach and not simply look at each channel in isolation.

  • They also warned that an over-reliance on modelling, as with any solution, could be dangerous and that modelling should not replace data analysis. The bottom line from these discussions was that developing these solutions takes time. True insight does not come overnight and it can take up to five years to truly develop these tools to their full potential.

Full details of the discussion at both meetings can be obtained from Rob Dreblow at the WFA.


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