Why Interactive Ad Metrics Are Like Potato Chips

25 06 2008

At the Advertising Research Foundation audience measurement conference in New York, Lee Doyle, North American CEO of Mediaedge:cia, said CPG advertisers need better metrics to show better ROI.

With respect, I’m not at all sure he’s right.

Interactive metrics are like potato chips. The more we have, the more we want. And no matter how many we consume we cannot make them healthy for us.CPG Metrics Are Like Potato Chips

It’s time to come to grips with two important realities:

Reality 1: Low-interest categories (drumroll, please)… are, always have been and forever will be low-interest.

Reality 2: It’s OK to be low-interest.

New media doesn’t change these realities. Nor will dozens or hundreds of new metrics in a presentation deck the size of the Titanic. Digital doesn’t have to be perfect to work, and it doesn’t have to be better than TV. The job here is about being creative, visible, relevant and — whenever a brand can be — about genuinely being part of the conversation.

Let’s stop fretting over what interactive can’t do, and use it for what it can do well. Since video (notice I didn’t say TV) is likely to always be the primary means of generating awareness, we’ll never be able to prove down to the penny what the contribution of online has been. So what?

What matters is we know our customers are online, and we know online works as part of an overall plan to reach them.

Man cannot live by potato chips alone. Neither can CPG marketers.