You Ask, I Answer: Digital Ad Spend During Quarantine?

Christopher asks, “What are you doing to adjust your digital ad spend when so many people are working from home?”

It depends on your business. If you’re classified as a non-essential business and you’re closed, obviously turn off all ad spend and preserve budget. If you’re virtual and open for business, consider adjusting your spend and focusing more on CPC/CPA. Your CPMs will likely rise, but performance may not, because people are home and consuming more digital content.

Keep an eye on three digital metrics as a proxy for audience demand.

  • Chart out how many leads are coming in via unpaid sources compared to period over period and year over year.
  • Chart out how many returning users are coming to your digital properties for the same time period.
  • Chart out search volumes, especially branded search, for the same time period.

Calculate the percentage change for each, average them together, and see what your blended demand change is. Then adjust your ad spend commensurately, because that’s how interested your market is.

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Machine-Generated Transcript

What follows is an AI-generated transcript. The transcript may contain errors and is not a substitute for watching the video.

In today’s episode, Christopher asks, What are you doing to adjust your digital ad spend when so many people are working from home and or businesses are closed? So really good question.

I would imagine it’s one that’s on everyone’s mind.

It depends on your business.

If you are classified, for example, as a non essential business and you’re closed, obviously immediately turn off all your ad spend, preserve your budget, make sure that you log into all the ad platforms that you have, you know, social Google ads, YouTube ads, display ads, all that stuff.

preserve your budget, just turn things off, right.

If you’re virtual, meaning your company can work from home and stay in business, stay operational, or you’re an essential business.

Consider adjusting your spend and consider the type of average And you’re running.

In a period like this, where you have a lot of people working remote working from home, you’re gonna have a lot more eyes on digital content, right? So if you are doing CPM advertising cost per thousand views, you’re gonna see those, those numbers probably go up.

But the performance may not because people are just home and consumed consuming more digital content.

You may want to think about testing out and monitoring cost per lead cost per acquisition, cost per click something like that, that gets you to the actions you care about, as opposed to just being in front of eyeballs being in front of eyeballs right now is easier than it has been from a mechanism perspective because there’s a lot more ad inventory because there’s a lot more people online, but your performance may not.

So keep a close eye on those numbers.

If you see your CPM start to go up and your performance does not commensurate They go up for the ad stuff, you may want to change strategies.

Keep an eye on two other metrics as well actually, I would say three, your lead generation mechanisms, especially for any leads that are from unpaid sources, organic search, unpaid social media, things like that.

You’re gonna want to sort of establish a baseline for the last say, what 30 days compared to the previous 30 days and then the last 30 days versus the same 30 days you’re over a year and get a sense of the performance on your lead generation mechanisms.

That’s number one.

Number two, look at returning users year over year same period 30 days prior to 30 days, 30 days year over year.

And then the third is look for look at search volumes, particularly any branded searches, branded organic searches people searching for your company or your products or services by name same time period What you want to do is get a sense of the percentage change for each of those metrics.

And by the mechanism of your choice, average, median, some doesn’t matter.

Whatever you feel comfortable with knowing your own data, I would personally go with average for this instance.

What you want to do is establish what percentage drop you’re seeing in all three of those behaviors.

And the reason for this is that we want to adjust our ad spend based on perceived demand in the marketplace.

If no one’s searching for us if no one’s coming back to our website, if no one’s filling out forms from unpaid sources, then we know that demand for what we’re doing is down we should consider throttling back our ad spend or changing our targeting or something to get to the demand that is there, but not wasting money.

If demand does not exist, because there are a lot of people understandably, who have absolutely no interest in our marketing right now.

And that’s more than Find people need to get as the expression goes get used to the new normal, it’s going to take a couple of months for that to happen.

So consider those those metrics now.

Why those three because we’re trying to measure three different levels of interest in us, right branded search means we’ve got mindshare, and there’s need for us people trying to find us returning users is important.

Because, again, if we are in a, an environment where everyone is digital, and everyone’s spending a lot more time on digital devices, new users are just flat out users to our website, maybe the curious, maybe the board even I have to be really boring to dubrow some of our corporate websites, but it’s still within the realm of possibility.

But a returning user is somebody who comes back, right.

It’s somebody who didn’t get bored with us and came back for some reason for any reason whatsoever.

So we want to be able to track that.

And then of course, those those leads generated from unpaid sources and of course, we want to exclude paid sources because That’s not something that we’re actually trying to figure out what to pay right now.

So So those three measures, I would say average together, that well, though the percentage difference year over year and past 30 versus prior 30.

averaged together will give us a sense of how far up or down is demand.

And then you do your calculations if demand is down 30% and may want to ratchet your ad spend down that much as well.

That way, you’re staying in sync with the market.

And this is an assessment that if you’re spending a whole lot of money on ads, you may want to do, you know, weekly, maybe even daily for spending a lot of money on ads, you know, if you’ve got an ad campaign spending, you know, 10 2030 $50,000 a day, it’s probably worth your time to do that, especially once you get in the habit of it or you write yourself a routine for doing that, to be able to extract that data and look and look backwards at those times.

That’s the way I tackle this question so that you understand what’s happening in your audience in your market.

And you can adjust your spend appropriately and you don’t blow your budget, especially since once this is all over and demand picks back up.

You’re going to want to scale your ads with demand, right? You’re going to want to and you’ll need to have budget in hand to do that if you bend the budget.

Now when people aren’t buying, it’s gonna be a lot harder to recover.

So I would say use this technique.

Let me know how it goes for you.

I’m legit curious to see how others are measuring demand right now because it is a very, very unusual time.

And it we don’t have good mathematical models for a black swan event like this.

Good question.

Let me know how it goes you leave your comments in the comments box below.

Subscribe to the YouTube channel on the newsletter.

I’ll talk to you soon.

Take care Help solving your company’s data analytics and digital marketing problems, visit Trust insights.ai today and let us know how we can help you


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