To view or not to view: Why viewability should not be the only question

By Gai Le Roy, Director of Research, IAB Australia | Sponsored
Gai Le Roy

During the past 18 months there has been extensive debate within the advertising industry around what we would consider hygiene factors for ad inventory; viewability, brand safety and invalid traffic.

Naturally, the IAB agree that these areas are important and should be monitored and managed. However, we are concerned that the emphasis on these issues has meant that many other factors are being ignored or undervalued when measuring the effectiveness of media investment.

This is one of the key drivers behind our upcoming (and inaugural) measurement conference MeasureUp. We’ve made a concerted effort to bring all of the factors to the table and have an impressive line-up of global and local speakers – all of whom have been challenged to bring robust data to prove all of their points.

Why context matters

We received a lot of submissions around the impact of media quality and environmental factors, but few included the critical areas of reviewing context and how this impacts the efficiency of media spend. That is why we were so excited when ComScore’s Global Marketing Director, Ben Martin agreed to fly in to give one of the international keynote presentations.

ComScore have carried out a significant amount of research around audience, context and hygiene and Ben is going to be presenting new research findings on the impact of context and media environment on a brand’s long term relationship with its audience.

According to Martin “A recent focus for many advertisers and publishers has been combating issues related to invalid traffic and viewability, ensuring that ads are seen by real, human audiences. We agree this is a critical baseline to give advertising the chance to make an impact, but with the understanding that it represents only the first step when attempting to shift toward metrics that matter: from campaign reach and frequency, to increases in awareness, purchase intent and ultimately consumer action.”

He continued “In ‘The Halo Effect’ study, we examined the impact of advertising within premium publisher environments and found that while more viewable inventory and a lower incidence of IVT contributed to higher advertising impact within premium environments, the more significant driver was the ‘halo effect’ of being seen in that environment.

Using an analysis of 15 campaigns across a wide range of industries, we found that ads appearing in premium contexts drove 67% greater brand lift overall, with the most pronounced lifts occurring in terms of mid-funnel metrics such as brand favourability. This study highlights the value of premium inventory, and suggests that while ensuring impressions can be seen by an actual human is an important consideration, the context in which that ad is seen also matters a great deal.”

Measurements of the future

With so many ad tech and research tools being built to review just one element of measuring the success of a campaign, it can make it hard for agencies and marketers to assess the contribution of the different elements of marketing activity including audience, creative and environment.

Anyone who knows me knows I hate dragging out phrases that have been possibly over used, but we (the media and marketing industry and anyone with a digital focus) need to ensure we think about the old phrase – right person, right time, right place, right message.

It is exciting to see independent research agencies now bringing these pieces together and to be able to clearly quantify these elements for digital media investments. I look forward to seeing how data from real campaigns can help marketers improve their marketing spend.

IAB Australia’s MeasureUp conference will be held in Sydney on 10th October at Sheraton on the Park. Tickets on sale now. 


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