Do You Track These Eight Programmatic Advertising Metrics?
With Nagendra Sai
Associate Director, Programmatic, True Influence
In part 2 of this series about programmatic advertising metrics, let’s take a look at what some other metrics can tell you about the success of your campaigns.
Eight Programmatic Advertising Metrics for B2B Marketers
1 – Reach
How many unique users who have viewed your display creative within a given time period.
Reach is typically important in brand or early product cycle awareness. Basically, you want everybody who may be interested to see your ad. In B2B, programmatic can be a great tool for market sizing, and reach is a key metric in such campaigns. Campaigns with a broad reach can often have a lower CTR, which is perfectly acceptable.
2 – Frequency
The number of times an individual user sees the same ad within a given timeframe.
Common wisdom is you don’t want to show a user the same ad more than five times before switching up creative or messaging. If you’re targeting someone who’s actively engaged in purchase research, particularly on a B2B site, you may want to run the same ad creative at a somewhat lower frequency.
3 – Viewability
The percentage of your display advertising impressions that are at least 54 percent viewable on a typical page load for more than a sec.
Viewabilty is critical for any kind of campaign, although it’s most important for branding. But, obviously, if no one sees your ad, there’s no reason to pay for it.
Most DSPs and ad marketplaces have an option to purchase only viewable inventory. I advise any B2B seller to select this option on your campaigns. It may result in a slightly higher CPM or dCPM, but it’s well worth it.
4 – Time
When most of the activity on your programmatic campaign occurs. Example: Time of day metric.
This metric is often overlooked, but understanding is essential for a successful retargeting campaign. It’s also important to be aware when viewers are most likely to be online on their mobile, tablet, laptop and PC devices. Time is particularly useful if your goal is a reasonably big ask, such as a webinar signup. Knowing whether users are most likely to interact with your ads at home, in the early work day or on the train ride home (maybe) can greatly influence volume and messaging of your campaign.
5 – Cost Per Acquisition
The cost per conversion event, as defined specifically for the campaign.
For CPA to be truly meaningful, you must establish a clear action path that you want your creative to initiate. Simply linking to a generic landing page with four or more options won’t result in high levels of form completions – but perhaps just showing users this page is the “conversion” you were looking for. Some of our customers define an acquisition as form completion, while others may set a desired time on page as the criteria. (Sometimes this programmatic advertising metric is expressed as Cost Per Action, reflecting this possible wide range of desirable outcomes.)
In B2B, CPA is most critical after the early awareness stage of the purchase journey, when you want to convert a prospect to an opt-in relationship with a content asset offer. A low CTR coupled with high CPA is a big win in this context – it shows that you are converting the best prospects, which is your main goal.
6 – Video Completion Rate
The percentage of viewers who watched the entire length of your video advertisement.
Obviously, this programmatic advertising metric is largely reliant on the length of your video. The highest VCR is reported on short videos (15 seconds and under), the type of creative you might choose to run in an early awareness campaign. If you hyper-target key decision makers with a 60-second video to lift a late-funnel offer, you’re likely to get a lower VCR.
7 – Cost Per View
The cost of a meaningful partial view of your video content, based on an agreed-upon viewing threshold.
If you’ve frontloaded your message, a 5-second view of a 10-second video may have a meaningful impact on the prospect. Again, the threshold of what you consider a view really depends on your creative and the targeted audience.
8 – ROI
Revenue generated divided by cost of campaign.
I hesitate to include this metric here, since without a structured attribution system in place, it’s largely useless. B2B deals are made with dozens of contact points, and attributing revenue to any given one of them is a complicated process.
However, in some cases a desired acquisition or action does have an assigned monetary value. A good example might be newsletter signups. A company might determine that the average subscriber has a lifetime additive revenue value of $1,000, and based on that, you could calculate ROI on a programmatic campaign to drive subscriptions.
But as you can see, this is a highly simplified application of ROI, and not something a DSP dashboard will typically track for you.
Programmatic Advertising Metrics Are All About Context
Metrics are the foundation of tracking the performance of your programmatic advertising campaigns. But without context, they can be a little misleading. Understanding how ad metrics reflect and measure progress toward your ad campaign’s goals is essential in optimizing your ad budgets and closing new business.
Learn more about programmatic advertising metrics and campaigns that deliver results B2B brands want.