Some of the most high-profile luminaries in the industry, including Procter & Gamble’s Marc Pritchard and Unilever’s Keith Weed, have publicly criticized the lack of trustworthiness and transparency in digital marketing and are now becoming much more vocal about greater openness and a more effective return on their investment from their commercial partners.
No one is saying that brands are not tackling this lack of transparency head on. The World Federation of Advertisers (WFA) states that 65% of brands have improved their understanding of the issues surrounding media transparency over the last year including positive affirmations such as hiring a head of programmatic. The WFA is very optimistic going as far as stating “The bad days are over, there is a new dawn for the way in which media is bought and sold.”
This maybe the case but many companies are still not taking affirmative action. So what can companies do to help drive clarity over their media buying?
Amir Malik, Head of Programmatic at Accenture Interactive UK identifies 3 steps:
Technology. It is now possible to access data reports and analyze media investment in real time, so companies should be reviewing their reporting and the tools they are using for analysis.
Talent. Attracting the right talent, talent that understands the role of data and technology in advertising is critical. For too long these skills have been missing in advertising and marketing teams.
Blockchain. Blockchain may be an emerging technology but it is already making a huge impact on driving transparency. It allows media buyers to see quantifiable and broken-down transactions that are irreversibly recorded. Malik predicts that Blockchain will rewrite the rules of media investment.
Malik says “I have one piece of advice; to unlock the power of data driven advertising marketers have to take back control and that is manifested by adopting and licensing technology themselves”.