The Influence of Publisher Brands
on Advertising Perceptions
U n c o v e r i n g t h e v a l u e o f p r e m i u m c o n t...
2
Identifying publisher challenges…
Quality
Differentiation
Communicating
Added Value
Commoditization
Trends
Publishers ar...
3
Quantifying Publisher Value
Study of consumer behaviors and attitudes across 44 sites:
4
BEHAVIORAL ATTITUDINAL
OBSERVED
B...
5
How Sites are Differentiated by Consumers
BRAND PERCEPTIONS
• Brand identity
• Attitudes of trust
and desire
• Fulfilmen...
6
What is a Brand?
A Brand is the set of associations (ideas, memories and feelings) in the
mind of a consumer.
7
Three Drivers of Brand Strength
MEANINGFUL
DIFFERENCE
MEANINGFUL
DIFFERENT
SALIENT
SITE
UTILITY
VISIT PURPOSE
BRAND
ATTI...
8
Meaningfully
Different Brand
Compared to on
other sports sites,
ESPN site visitors:
• 49% more
likely to seek
informatio...
9
Impact of Site Brand Strength
147
153
141
152
100 100 100 100
67
63 65
71
Average of AdFit Average of
AdFavorability
Ave...
Symmetry
Audience Dynamics and Personality determine advertiser
brand fit
10
PERSONALITY
OPTIMAL
EXPERIENCE
AUDIENCE DYNAM...
Audience behavior prior
to and during site visits
is vitally important to an
accurate and holistic
view of ad context
Audi...
12
13
Audience Dynamics Measures
EVERYDAY
RELEVANCE
Traditional measures of
reach (UV’s) and frequency
(visits per person), a...
Everyday Relevance & Engagement
The publisher impact
study validated the
importance of industry
standard metrics for
reach...
15
Visit Catalyst: A New Metric in Audience Dynamics
SEARCH OR
OTHER SITE
REFERRAL
DIRECT
SITE VISIT
Food sites generally ...
PERSONALITY
SITE PEDIGREE
Quantifying a site’s
persona to better match
to advertising fit
Site
Personality
17
18
Site Personality Measures
PERSONALITY SITE PEDIGREE
Site pedigree attributes describe
sites that vary across the
spectr...
19
Site Personality:
Personality & Pedigree
ESPN
Competitor 1
Competitor 2
Competitor 3
Competitor 4
Competitor 5
Competit...
20
Summarizing the Publisher Value Proposition
Strong publisher brands have a positive halo
effect on advertising receptivity...
Thank You
MBD PU BLISH ER GR OU P@ MILLWAR D BR OWN .C OM
22
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The Influence of Publisher Brands on Advertising Perceptions

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Presentation: The Influence of Publisher Brands on Advertising Perceptions
In a world where brands seek to be publishers and where the desire for efficiencies has shifted focus to audience-based buying, what value does the digital publisher’s brand contribute to the advertising process? Millward Brown Digital’s research examines the influence of online publishers’ own brands in not only connecting advertiser brands to audiences, but setting context for advertising receptivity.

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Margaret Hung, VP, International, Millward Brown Digital
Hannah Pavalow, Research Analyst, Millward Brown Digital

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  • Good afternoon. My name is Margaret Hung from Millward Brown Digital, and I’m here today with Hannah Pavalow, to share with you the conclusions from research we recently completed about the role of online publisher sites in the advertising process.
  • In our day-to-day as research partners, we hear common themes across digital publishers as they struggle to showcase their value in today‘s ad environment.

    Publishers are currently faced with 3 major challenges:

    They are faced with an inability to quantify the influence of their site or site specific content
    While they know that intuitiively, strong sites enhance the visitor experience and the effectivemess of the creative, they have no way to show that and are thus, held accountable to accessible metrics, such as CTR
    And now they are challenged with the emergence of audience based buying – where finding the right demographic or behaviorally determined targets has primacy

    Publishers are under more pressure than ever to justify their prices, particularly for their premium content.

    These challenges are interesting – if we think back to earlier days the value of digital publisher brands were unquestioned.
  • And even today, with the millions of online publishers that have cropped up since the days where Yahoo! and AOL defined the industry, many of the world’s top 100 strongest brands are digital publishers. According to MB Vermeer’s latest report, 9 of the BrandZ top 100 most valuable global brands are digital publishers.

    So we asked ourselves, why are digital publishers struggling so hard to prove value to advertisers. In today’s crowded digital environment, has the publishers’ value truly become commoditized?
  • We decided to delve into this issue further with research to understand:
    From a consumer perspective, what are the variables that determine how one site is differentiated from the other?
    What is the value that the publisher brings to the adverting process?

    We selected a representative sample of sites with varying performance across our behavioral and normative databases. For each site, we coded site characteristics by pulling data from our large-scale behavioral clickstream panel and from a survey of n=435 respondents.

    In total, we had a data set include over 100 variables for each site to inform our research.
  • Through rigorous analysis, we were able to synthesize site visitors’ perceptions of different sites into three broad evaluation [buckets]:
    Brand perceptions
    Their behavioral relationship they visit the sites (what sites they visit, how often they visit, and how the arrived on the site);
    Personality attributes – as with people, audience ascribe personalities to sites based on presentation, tone and content.

    A deeper understanding of the component of each of these [buckets] are necessary to understand how to evaluate individual site’s value proposition to advertisers.

    Hannah and will talk in more detail about each of these three.
  • To understand how consumers form brand perceptions, let’s first review our definition of brands.

    Brands are operative in the tangible world. They are sets of associations (ideas, memories and feelings) about that thing in the mind of a consumer. Brands play the same role in the digital world and influencing the audience member’s digital experience.
  • So what is brand strength actually made of in the publisher context? We found that there are three key components that drive the strength of a site or publisher brand: brand attitudes; site utility; and meaningful difference.


    Site Brand Attitudes is about the relationship between the audience and the site site desirability, how much they trusted the site and how shareable they found content on that site to be
    Whether or not audiences found a site to be desirable
    Trust – (How trustworthy audiences found a site to be)
    Shareability –how shareable is the site’s content. If an audience member is willing to share something they are/become vested in the content themselves.


    Site Utility is about motiivation it relates to the reasons that people visit a site (for example going to a site for information, to read reviews, to watch videos or look at photos). A site has to provide a benefit, so that people want to be there.

    Meaningful Difference is the audience’s perceptions of the site – how meaningful, different and salient audiences found the site to be.

  • <Insert ESPN site measures to demonstrate attitudes, utility and MD>
  • We scored each brand to understand relationship with Ad Diagnostics

    Specifically: Sites with a Site Brand Strength score of 80 or above performed significantly higher than average across the board, demonstrating the value they add to ad effectiveness


  • While brand strength is a large component of understanding how a site is setting up an audience member for an advertising experience, there are two other components that are needed to help optimize that ad experience: Audience Dynamics and Personality
    These two compornents differ from the brnad strenght score in that knowing where a site falls along measuures in these two areas will allow publishers and advertisers the ability to look for and capitalize on synergies between the ad and the environment
    This means not just delivering the right ad in the right place, but also delivering it in the right way given the users environment
    Some sites are going to be better for sponsorships and anative advertising, while other sites will be more effective with high impact units, such as full page interstials. Knowing which will work best will come through an understanding of how an audience is interacting with that site, how they perceive that site and what will work best for the brands being advertised.
  • Audience dynamics is about how people are interacting with a site
    It aims to answer questions such as how often are people going to a site, how are they getting there, what are they doing once they get there?
    The answers to these questions can provide a fuller picture of the amount of focus that a user is likely to be giving to site, which is important in deciding what types of advertising units will work best in that particular moment
  • For example the browsing experience of someone that is reading the news while they eat breakfast may look like this.
    While the browsing experience of someone that is looking for a recipe for dinner at 5pm before they leave work may look like this
    In the first example you’re likely to be getting a larger percentage of that visitors focus, they are going to be less rushed in their browsing, and likely to spend more time with the site and therefore the ads, in the second example you are going to need to fight a lot harder for that person’s attention, but you’re also going to be reaching them right before they are about to go make a related purchase.
    Both of these experiences are very different, but both of them offer unique opportunities to the advertiser, an knowing the audience dynamics of the site lets advertisers optimize based on their goals
  • So how should we be considering audience dynamics? We’ve broken in down into three measures
    Everyday Relevance, Engagement and Visit Catalyst
    Everyday Relevance and Engagement are based on the behavioral metrics that we already use when selecting sites for campaigns, and consider traditional measures such as UV’s and time spent.
    Everyday Relevance is made up of UV’s, visits per person and share of time spent on that site
    Engagement which considers Length of time visitors spend on the site and the number of pages visited while there
    And Visit Catalyst is a new metrics that looks at how a visitor arrived on the site

  • Everyday Relevance is about how a site fits into a visitors routine, is it somewhere that they are going every day or is it somewhere that they only visit once a month.
    While Engagement speaks to what an actual visit looks like. Are they clicking on a single page and them moving on to somewhere else or are they reading multiple articles and taking time with their browsing
    These two metrics do two important things:
    They help to validate the importance of metrics that we are already using
    But they also take those traditional audience measures and regroups them around the visititors interactions with the site, instead of looking at them as just an single numbers (like page views) where bigger is always better
  • Let’s look at how Visit Catalyst plays out acreoss categories.
    Food sites generally get majority of traffic from search referrals when people are looking for specific recipes

    Whereas

    Sports and News sites were more visited with the intent to consume topic-specific content
  • Site personality is about how people perceive a site
    Understand the perceptions about a site allow advertisers to better match their brands to the sites that they advertise on
    This can be important in two ways:
    1) It can prevent advertisers from displaying on sites with the wrong personalities, which can cause jarring expereiences and actually hurt their brand
    2) It can also open the doors to find places that are actually a good fit for them that might not be as obvious
  • As you may or may not know the Onion is a satirical website, that posts humourous content, when you look at this image you can feel something is off
    Seeing ads for Fidelity doesn’t make any sense. If a visitor were to notice to these adds, they would at best be confused by the advertising and maybe think it is targeting gone wrong, or at worst it makes them feel like this is a brand that doesn’t understand them, by presenting people with creative that doesn’t align with their expecations and moods, we can actually create a negative experience for that vistor.
    This image is obviously mocked up and when we look at what the actual advertising for the site is, which is Jack Lee’s a beef jerky brand, the entire page makes more sense. This is the type of brand that one expects to see on this site, it makes you think of the brand being fun and cheeky similar to the Onion. In this case the advertiser brand and the publisher brand are working together to create a better expereience
  • Site personality contemplates two dimensions:

    The Personality dimension describes Personality attributes are descriptors that vary across many types of personality characteristics, including how assertive, fun and / or friendly a site is perceived to be.

    Site pedigree describes the extent to which sites ladder up to a more traditional or more established site brand (those sites are seen as more traditional or established) compared to modern brands (that don’t ladder up) which are perceived to be more adventurous or rebellious

  • Lastly we can look at ESPN as it performs along the personality and pedigree dimensions
    The horizontal axis is the personality dimension and denoted by the orange attributes
    The vertical axis shows the site pedigree dimension and is denoted by the yellow attributes
    As you can see in terms of personality ESPN is seen as a fun and friendly site, but so are the rest of the sports sites
    While this positioning is useful if they are comparing themselves to a news site, however doesn’t help to differentiate them from within category
    Though when we look at site pedigree ESPN stands out as a site that is Straightforward and Trustworthy as compared to other sports sites.
    This gives them the ability to differentiate themselves within category
    For example, this could help them to go after a brand like Aflac, which is serious, in the sense that they are an insurance provider, but has a lighter/funnier personality which may align well with “fun” sports sites
  • [I think you have the personality results of these sits, correct? Here, I think you can speak to the fact that these are both strong scoring sports sites from a brand perspective, but very different in personality. Maybe even highlight and joke about the story about teeing from the crotch]
  • Strong publisher brands are meaningfully different, fulfill visitor purpose and engender trust / share-ability

    They attract and engage distinct audiences that are valuable to the right advertisers

    Like with brands, consumers differentiate between publisher personalities creating an opportunity to exploit synergies between advertiser and publisher brands


    In conclusion, it’s our belief that:
    Alignment with the right publisher brand is important to optimize ad receptivity and perceptions. The value of the publisher brand should be measured and included in media buying decisions.

    Digital publishers have an imperative to act like brand managers, carefully cultivating brand values and personality, as well as their content and their relationship with customers


  • The case study that we just presented is a sample of the type of analysis that is delivered in a Publisher Impact study.
    If you are interested in learning more about the solution please reach out to the email on the screen.
  • The Influence of Publisher Brands on Advertising Perceptions

    1. 1. The Influence of Publisher Brands on Advertising Perceptions U n c o v e r i n g t h e v a l u e o f p r e m i u m c o n t e n t 1 July 22, 2014
    2. 2. 2 Identifying publisher challenges… Quality Differentiation Communicating Added Value Commoditization Trends Publishers are challenged with an inability to demonstrate a site’s brand influence or the effect of site- specific content. Many still being held accountable for CTR performance, regardless of campaign and creative objectives because they are most easily measured. Audience-based buying trends have reduced site value to basic audience measures, thereby minimizing the value of premium content. Publishers are limited in how they are able to sell their inventory and justify prices for premium content.
    3. 3. 3
    4. 4. Quantifying Publisher Value Study of consumer behaviors and attitudes across 44 sites: 4 BEHAVIORAL ATTITUDINAL OBSERVED BEHAVIORAL SITE METRICS SURVEYED ATTITUDINAL METRICS • Unique Visits & Page Views • Average stay • Visits per person & Pages per visit • Attention • Source: Compete behavioral panel • Impressions of sites’ brands • Feelings towards sites • Reasons for visiting sites • Impressions of advertising on sites • Source: Survey n=4,935
    5. 5. 5 How Sites are Differentiated by Consumers BRAND PERCEPTIONS • Brand identity • Attitudes of trust and desire • Fulfilment from visit Brand Relationship Person- ality RELATIONSHIP • Relevance • Engagement • Depth PERSONALITY PERCEPTIONS • Distinctness of varying attributes Understanding the underlying drivers of how consumers differentiate sites enables a better understanding of publishers’ value proposition to the advertising process
    6. 6. 6 What is a Brand? A Brand is the set of associations (ideas, memories and feelings) in the mind of a consumer.
    7. 7. 7 Three Drivers of Brand Strength MEANINGFUL DIFFERENCE MEANINGFUL DIFFERENT SALIENT SITE UTILITY VISIT PURPOSE BRAND ATTITUDES SITE DESIRABILITY TRUST SHAREABILITY
    8. 8. 8 Meaningfully Different Brand Compared to on other sports sites, ESPN site visitors: • 49% more likely to seek information • 41% more likely to watch videos; • 36% more likely to look at photos 72% highly trust the site 55% are likely to share content
    9. 9. 9 Impact of Site Brand Strength 147 153 141 152 100 100 100 100 67 63 65 71 Average of AdFit Average of AdFavorability Average of AdTrust Average of AdUse Brand Score 80 or above Average Brand Score Brand Score 20 or below
    10. 10. Symmetry Audience Dynamics and Personality determine advertiser brand fit 10 PERSONALITY OPTIMAL EXPERIENCE AUDIENCE DYNAMICS
    11. 11. Audience behavior prior to and during site visits is vitally important to an accurate and holistic view of ad context Audience Dynamics EVERYDAY RELEVANCE ENGAGEMENT VISIT CATALYST
    12. 12. 12
    13. 13. 13 Audience Dynamics Measures EVERYDAY RELEVANCE Traditional measures of reach (UV’s) and frequency (visits per person), and the share of overall Internet time visitors spend on the site ENGAGEMENT Length of time visitors spend on the site and the number of pages visited while there VISIT CATALYST How a visitor arrives on the site, whether referred through search results or driven there to consume specific content
    14. 14. Everyday Relevance & Engagement The publisher impact study validated the importance of industry standard metrics for reach, frequency and engagement 14 EVERYDAY RELEVANCE ENGAGEMENT
    15. 15. 15 Visit Catalyst: A New Metric in Audience Dynamics SEARCH OR OTHER SITE REFERRAL DIRECT SITE VISIT Food sites generally get a majority of traffic from search referrals when people are looking for specific recipes Sports and News sites were more visited with the intent to consume topic- specific content Audience-based buys can be very effective for products advertised on wandering sites since a visitor will go to multiple wandering sites in succession WANDERING: DESTINATION:
    16. 16. PERSONALITY SITE PEDIGREE Quantifying a site’s persona to better match to advertising fit Site Personality
    17. 17. 17
    18. 18. 18 Site Personality Measures PERSONALITY SITE PEDIGREE Site pedigree attributes describe sites that vary across the spectrum of traditional and established brands compared to modern brands that are perceived to be more adventurous or rebellious Personality attributes are descriptors that vary across many types of personality characteristics, including how assertive, fun and/or how friendly a site is perceived to be
    19. 19. 19 Site Personality: Personality & Pedigree ESPN Competitor 1 Competitor 2 Competitor 3 Competitor 4 Competitor 5 Competitor 6 Competitor 7 Competitor 8 Friendly WiseGenerous Caring Kind Assertive Fun Idealistic Adventurous Different Playful Rebellious Straightforward Trustworthy Sports Sites Personality Attributes Pedigree Attributes SITEPEDIGREE PERSONALITY
    20. 20. 20
    21. 21. Summarizing the Publisher Value Proposition Strong publisher brands have a positive halo effect on advertising receptivity They attract and engage distinct audiences that are valuable to the right advertisers Distinct publisher personalities offer an opportunity to leverage branding synergies between advertiser and publisher 21 1 2 3
    22. 22. Thank You MBD PU BLISH ER GR OU P@ MILLWAR D BR OWN .C OM 22

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