Media Place Partners delivers full-funnel digital marketing capabilities across all major digital marketing channels. We function as an extension of your team delivering innovative methods to reach your customers. MPP considers your business, target audience, and goals to recommend the most effective digital marketing channels and tactics to use. These could include: search engine marketing on Google or Bing, display advertising on the Google Display Network, social media marketing, streaming audio on Spotify and Pandora, and more. Our campaigns attract, nature, engage, and ultimately, convert customers wherever they are at. What is digital marketing and what are your options? Read on.
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Display is a fancy name for banner ads – yes, those banner ads, the ones you see all over the internet. Simply put, a banner ad (or a web banner) is an advertisement displayed on a web page. Chances are you’ve seen a few – display ads appear across more than 2 million websites and more than 650,000 apps on the Google Display Network. That’s just Google. There are many other exchanges as well as direct deals with website publishers.
The Evolution of Display Ads
When banner ads made their debut on the internet, they came in one form – simple static images. Display advertising, as we once knew it, has evolved. These days, businesses with an online presence need more than a simple banner ad to stand out in a competitive market. Modern banner ads come in a variety of eye-catching shapes, sizes, and formats, from videos, to animated graphics, to interactive HTML5. They appear on social network newsfeeds and on websites you like to browse, blending seamlessly into the content you consume online.
The Rise of Mobile
Desktop was once king for display campaigns, but mobile has taken over. This doesn’t mean you have to choose one platform over the other. One of display advertising’s best features is the ability to follow users across devices, whether they’re on their computer, tablet, or smartphone. This cross-device advertising ensures you’re in front of your target audience at every stage of their buying journey.
Display is Data Driven
Your banner ads are designed with a compelling call to action and your target audience has been strategically selected…now what? What happens when a campaign goes live? Once a display campaign launches, MPP’s digital strategists crunch numbers and aggregate data behind the scenes, They analyze what’s working, and over time, tweak anything that needs adjusting. The beauty of display ads is the ability to measure their effectiveness with data. MPP works hard to ensure you get the best ROI for your budget.
What’s The Buzz About CTR?
Click-through-rate (CTR) is a significant metric for measuring display ad performance. Simply put, CTR measures how often people who see an ad click on it. This gives a good indication of how engaged your target audience is with your ad. Advertisers can control and change imagery, ad positioning, copy, and many other elements that impact CTR.
Is Display Advertising a Good Choice For Your Business?
- Branding – Display ads are visually rich. Done well, they can command attention and create memorable experiences for users.
- Awareness – Display creates initial interest. Whereas search focuses on intent, display introduces your brand. Display ads have a very high reach and can be seen by a very large audience.
- Retargeting / Remarketing – Display has excellent targeting options. Certain targeting options aren’t available through other methods. This includes topic, interest, and of course remarketing.
- Tracking – Display advertising is easily trackable. By design you’re able to track several metrics on your display campaigns.
- Your sales process is long.
- Your brand needs awareness and attention.
- Your audience coalesces around a topic or affinity.
- You need remarketing.
When it comes to marketing strategy, remember that everything has its place. If you overly focus on the bottom of the funnel, the top will eventually run dry. Think full-funnel. Display advertising shines at the top of the funnel but can also be a strong converter when you add retargeting.
What Social Networks Should You Advertise On?
Just because you can advertise on every social platform doesn’t mean you should. Running ads on all social networks can stretch your budget too thin and may not put you in front of the audience you’re targeting. When deciding where to place your ads, MPP takes into consideration what platforms are most popular with your target audience including, where are they most engaged, most concentrated, and most available?
The MPP Social Philosophy
Don’t try to be everything to everyone – meet your audience where they are.
Social Media: The Big Four
We’ll be honest – keeping up-to-date with social media takes a lot of work. Platforms come and go, algorithms change, and new features are frequently introduced to keep things fresh. Our team diligently stays on top of these changes and uses best practices on each platform to ensure peak ad performance. Since social media marketing is a broad topic, we’ll give a quick overview of the big four tried–and–true platforms – Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn.
Facebook was an early innovator in the social media space and continues to drive trends a decade later. It’s currently one of the biggest social media platforms and shows no signs of losing steam. Facebook ads are served on their network and come in a variety of formats. With options like single image, video, carousel, slideshow, and more, advertisers can creatively reach Facebook’s userbase of over two billion people. If you want to build a presence on social media, Facebook is a good place to start.
With over 1 billion monthly average users, Instagram is the social channel with the second-highest ROI among marketers. Instagram ads are attention-grabbing and are displayed in user’s feeds and stories (images or short video clips that disappear after 24 hours), making this highly visual platform popular amongst younger demographics.
LinkedIn has a longstanding reputation as the professional social media network. With 294 million monthly average users, LinkedIn attracts job seekers, industry experts, and businesses alike. Ads can be delivered as sponsored content in-feed as images, videos, and carousels, along with options like direct InMail and dynamic ads. This platform has found success advertising in hard–to–reach niches, such as B2B lead generation, with a success rate double that of the next social platform.
The character count may be short, but Twitter still packs a mighty punch. With 335 million monthly average users, millions of people access Twitter for groundbreaking news, keeping up with their favorite brands, and following celebrities. There are a few different ad options on Twitter, including Promoted Tweets, Promoted Accounts, and Promoted Trends.
Setting Up A Successful Social Campaign
Creating and running social media marketing seems simple in theory. Each platform has its own ads tool, so all you need is an account to run these from, right? Well, that’s a start – but there’s much more that goes on behind the scenes to create and launch a successful social media ad campaign.
First, establish a campaign goal. What do you want to achieve by running social media advertising? Driving awareness, lead generation, brand engagement, and web traffic are just a few of the objectives available for social media marketing.
Next up: targeting. Who is your ideal customer? Social media offers a wide array of targeting options. Typically, these include very specific selections based on user behavior within that platform. You can target audiences using demographics like age, zip code, job title, hobbies, and more. Users can also be targeted using contact information, such as email lists.
Now, on to creative. Ad creative is the imagery featured in ads, such as video, images, or motion graphics, and the copy that accompanies it. Each platform has specific requirements for ad creative, like image dimensions, length of copy, and even rules regarding the content of the ad. If ads don’t follow creative guidelines, your campaigns may run poorly or not at all.
Once a campaign is approved and launched, it needs to be monitored, optimized, and analyzed. While it’s possible to do this on your own, using a partner with expertise on the ins and outs of each social platform takes a lot of guesswork off your plate and maximizes your ad spend.
What’s Next For Social?
Although social media marketing is still relatively new, it’s continually changing. What was popular a year ago may seem dated today. We can’t predict the future of social media marketing, but there are a few emerging trends we are keeping our eyes on:
Videos are front and center, grabbing consumer’s attention over traditional static ad formats. With more platforms implementing video features, from stories to live video, audiences want to connect with brands via video in a meaningful way.
Storytelling is powerful. These days, people aren’t looking for a sales pitch – they are seeking stories that entertain, inform, and educate. Removing the polish from traditional ads by incorporating user-generated content, gifs, emojis, and casual language makes your brand more human.
Is Social Media Marketing a Good Choice For My Business?
Social media marketing has a wide array of benefits for almost any business.
- Advanced targeting – Most platforms offer audience targeting at very granular levels. Find your audience based on not only what they are talking about, but also the data included in their profile. For brands with a local market or niche, this is a huge advantage.
- Brand awareness – Get in front of thousands of people around the world or around the corner at any moment. With social advertising, there are very few limits to what your brand can touch.
- Build relationships – Social media focuses on relationships. That allows your brand to build a bond with your audience. People buy from who they know and trust. Use social to connect with customers to build that trust
- Quick ROI – While other channels excel at the long game, social can yield results from day one. The targeting options alone give most well-thought-out campaigns immediate traction.
Social media marketing should be part of any brand’s digital marketing efforts. The audience is incredibly large, targeting is highly focused, and the ROI tends to be quick. Keep in mind that your ads can only reach users if they are using the social platform. Other marketing channels reach your audience at other times and places. Think full-funnel and improve your campaign results as a whole.
SEM – Search Engine Marketing
One of the first things most people do when opening a web browser is search. In fact, 3.5 billion Google searches are made every day, and the volume of searches grows by roughly 10% each year. Search Engine Marketing (SEM) or sponsored listings, also known as PPC, are ads a business has paid for that show up on search engine result pages. These ads are designed to feel native to the webpage and fit seamlessly into the results. With an increasing amount of people searching across devices, SEM is a great way to reach customers lower in the marketing funnel who are actively seeking your brand or services. The MPP SEM team is well-versed in creating effective SEM campaigns that drive actionable results.
Where Are People Searching?
Remember when desktop computers were only way to access the internet? Those days are long gone. These days, users can search on the go using smartphones and even with their voice or an image.
SEM vs Organic Search (SEO)
Everyone wants their website to show up on the first page of search results, but you’ll need more than luck to get there. Search engines determine how webpages rank using organic search or paid search.
Organic search results appear under paid ads and are ranked based on how relevant the search engine thinks your webpage is to the search query. Search Engine Optimization (SEO) plays a major role in organic search rankings, which factors in the content and relevance of the webpage. The higher quality and more engaging the page content, the higher the website rank. You don’t have to pay to play in the organic search world, but it can take a lot of time and work to see results.
Instead of waiting for SEO to organically build up, SEM can be used to make a webpage appear in the top search results. It’s important to find a trusted partner to create SEM campaigns, or else you could blow through your advertising budget with little ROI.
Building Blocks of Search Campaigns
Keywords are the building blocks of SEM campaigns. Behind each SEM campaign, MPP conducts careful research to select the best keywords, ad groups, and copy for each ad. Using this keyword research, we craft efficient SEM campaigns, including search extensions like app download, location, and click-to-call, based on campaign relevancy. Having good keywords and account structure is important not just for your ad spend, but for your Quality Score. This determines where your ads are displayed and how much you pay for each ad click. The better your ads perform, the lower you should spend per click. Our SEM team focuses on increasing your impression share and top-of-page rate for your most valuable keywords.
Working With A Google Premier Partner
MPP is proud to be a Google Premier Partner. We’ve achieved this status by demonstrating Google Ads skill and expertise, meeting ad spend requirements, delivering agency and client revenue growth, and sustaining our client base. In other words, MPP’s Premier Partner badge means our SEM team is knowledgeable, experienced, and successful in optimizing search campaigns.
Is SEM a Good Choice For My Business?
SEM sounds like the perfect digital marketing tool. But, like any part of your digital marketing stack, it has its place. When employing SEM remember these things:
- SEM is all about intent. A potential customer has to be actively searching for your product or service. Your SEM ads will not show up for users who aren’t already in the market.
- Your cost per click will tend to be higher than with display ads. The trade-off is that because search users have intent, there is higher engagement.
- SEM is not for branding. Potential customers are more likely to do business with you if they know and trust your brand. Introduce customers to your brand with other digital marketing channels. Use SEM as one of your conversion paths.
- SEM requires long-term care. While it’s quick to execute, SEM is not “set it and forget it.” It’s critical that campaigns receive monitoring and optimization to ensure performance over time.
Each part of your digital marketing stack has its role to play. A holistic view of your entire campaign is essential to success. Media Place Partners helps brands envision and execute integrated media plans using the right marketing channels. Is SEM right for you? Contact us for more information.
If you’ve ever listened to a Spotify playlist or streamed a podcast, you’ve experienced streaming audio. Streaming audio has grown exponentially over the past few years, with two thirds of the U.S. population (that’s 204 million people!) spending more of their time in this medium. MPP’s digital advertising team is well versed in placing streaming audio ads on platforms where your audience is already engaged and listening.
Streaming Audio: The Best Of Digital and Traditional
While traditional radio typically focuses on listeners who are at home or in their car, streaming audio accompanies audiences as they are on the move. Ads on services like Pandora and Spotify follow users across all their connected devices, from phones, to desktops, to smart speakers, giving you more opportunities to engage with listeners. Audio ads can run with companion visual ads and videos that can include calls to action.
The Best of Both Worlds
Streaming audio takes the engagement of traditional radio and adds the targeting and measurability of digital. On Pandora and Spotify, MPP can zero in on the right audiences using demographics like age, gender, location, activity, and musical taste. From here, campaigns are fine-tuned to offer a more personalized advertising experience based on real-time insights into audience behavior.
With high engagement and brand recall, podcasts are an exciting digital advertising channel. These long-format audio broadcasts are consumed largely by millennials and have experienced year-over-year growth in listenership. Podcast ads are engaging and relevant, with a large portion of podcast spots read by the hosts. Statistics show that 54 percent of podcast listeners are either somewhat or much more likely to consider buying from a brand after hearing its advertisement on a podcast.
of podcast listeners are either somewhat or much more likely to consider buying from a brand after hearing its advertisement on a podcast.
Who’s Listening to Streaming Audio?
Streaming audio is consumed widely across age groups, but younger demographics have emerged as the top listeners. As of March 2018, Spotify’s user base was dominated by millennials, with 29 percent of its users aged 25 to 34 and 26 percent aged between 18 and 24 years old.
Is Streaming Audio Advertising a Good Choice For My Business?
People are spending more time with digital audio now than ever before. If you like the reach of traditional radio, but you’re also seeking the measurability and precision of digital advertising, streaming audio might be for you. Streaming audio ads offer many benefits that make them an excellent addition to your digital marketing toolbox. Here are a few:
- Streaming audio works when other channels don’t – Reach customers when they jog, ride a bike, or listen to their favorite podcasts while driving. Display, social, and search can’t do that.
- Streaming audio is cost-effective – You might think producing an audio ad is expensive. Traditionally, it’s cheaper to produce an audio ad than it is to produce visual ads.
- Streaming audio is engaging – Most ads within platforms like Spotify or Pandora are not skippable. That means your ad gets listened to. These platforms have learned that by limiting the number of ads played in a row, they can also increase engagement. That’s a win-win for you.
Programmatic streaming audio is an excellent tool for advertisers and marketers. Make streaming audio part of your marketing mix when:
- You need to reach people where visual ads are ineffective.
- You are looking to engage with users 18-54.
- You need reach, frequency, engagement, targeting, and measurability in a mobile-friendly package.
Media Place Partners has access to the major audio platforms and to thousands of podcasts. Let’s talk about how and if we can reach your audience with streaming audio.
Over the Top (OTT) is video content streamed over the internet to a connected device, bypassing traditional cable/linear TV distribution. Think of it this way – if you’ve watched streaming content and the content paused to show you an ad, you’ve experienced OTT advertising. It’s changing the way people watch TV and how advertising on TV is done. A connected TV (CTV) is a television set connected to the internet via built-in capabilities or an OTT device. OTT has huge potential for brands because it brings targeting, interactivity, and data to the TV ecosystem.
Who’s Watching OTT?
There are approximately 47 million ad-supported OTT households in the US. The demographics skew towards younger, digitally-savvy audiences.
- 18-34: 44%
- 35-54: 37%
- 55+: 18%
- Male: 60%
- Female: 40%
- Caucasian: 58%
- African-American: 15%
- Hispanic: 14%
- Asian/Other: 12%
Benefits of OTT
You already know that OTT is a way to reach cord-cutters, cord-nevers, and video content streamers. But OTT placements have several other benefits to help you reach more consumers, drive more engagement, and build your brand in the most compelling medium around–video.
Reach consumers across top-tier networks and popular content in a brand-safe environment.
Near 100% viewability
Advertisements on OTT run full-screen, just like a TV commercial, and most ads are not skippable.
98% ad completion
Consumers viewing OTT content watch ads to the end 98% of the time.
Unlike TV, OTT has targeting options similar to other digital advertising channels.
Extend traditional TV
Work with your traditional TV buy to balance and reach the right audience at the right time.
OTT is mainstream
The average home views 86 hours of content on OTT monthly. There’s lots of inventory to choose from.
OTT Brings Balance To Your Buy
TV has long been a powerful way to quickly reach a large audience, and it should be part of your media strategy. For emerging brands seeking to build awareness and drive performance with target audiences, or for established brands that need to connect and stay relevant with younger, digitally-savvy audiences, OTT is a must-have. Without it, brands are missing out on a full 1/3 of their potential audience.
of consumers can no longer be reached with linear TV and cable. 
of all US households have OTT streaming capability. 
of OTT users have paused content to purchase or learn more. 
OTT Brings Focused Targeting to TV
TV advertising excels at reaching a huge audience instantaneously. Targeting traditional TV to specific audiences is accomplished by purchasing spots on certain types of content or during specific times of the day. These tried–and–true tactics work well. However, as we’ve already discovered, focusing your buy solely on traditional TV means you could be missing 35% of the market. Make the most of that 35% by targeting your OTT buy with digital marketing-like tactics like these:
- Household income
- Day of the week
- Time of the day
- Content genre
Is OTT Advertising a Good Choice For My Business?
The people have spoken: they want to watch their TV media on their time and on their terms over the internet. They’re turning to OTT/CTV. OTT holds a huge amount of promise, but it exists in a complicated landscape. It may be the perfect fit for your business, but without the right expertise, you could be wasting valuable ad dollars. The first step is carefully evaluating OTT/CTV with regard to your specific business goals and needs. Media Place Partners can assist you by helping you evaluate the potential of OTT/CTV for your business.