Want me to renew? Not with that CTR!

In a recent post by Simon Shandler that I read on Sphinn he talks about the differences between ‘conversion’ marketing and ‘brand’ marketing.  It’s very important to know what type of campaign you are optimizing for.  As Simon mentions, you may find that bidding your ad to the #7 spot on the SERP may be perfect for the objectives of a ‘conversion’ campaign, whereas with ‘branding’ you’ll need to be in one of those top two spots, or at least above the fold.  Branding is about visibility, without regards to CTR or any true conversion.  And although your ad won’t stay above the fold, for a reasonable price anyways, if it does not garner a passable CTR, conversion is not a true measure of a branding campaign.

Many companies seem to forget this when they make large media buys on ad networks under the pretense of branding.  Every attempt is made, usually, to traffic the ad creative to a segmented audience.  But even if the buy is made in an attempt to brand a certain product or service, the reason they do not renew almost always has to do with the creative’s CTR, which the publisher is usually blamed for when it’s low.  I guess I understand, because if I spent money to advertise, I’d want some instant gratification as well, but common sense should tell you that branding may not come with instant, actionable steps by consumers.  When companies plunk down large gobs of advertising dollars on CPM based ad creative across the web, and then make life hard for publishers due to low CTR, I think they are asking a bit much of the publishers, and the consumers for that matter.  What if your creative sucks?!  Ever thought of that?!