Building a successful ad campaign in 5 charts

2023 is the year of performance marketing. Budgets are getting leaner, and pressure is mounting for marketers to deliver. Advertisers need to be intentional about audience, platform, and measurement when serving up ads. Here are five charts every marketer needs for building the right ad campaign.

1. Know your audience

The first step to building an ad campaign is being clear on who you want to target. Aim your ads at the wrong age group and you’ll risk a “how do you do, fellow kids”-type situation. This may seem basic, but it’s vitally important.

Even within a demographic, make sure to be precise. For instance, if you’re advertising to Gen Z consumers, are you aiming for the 58% considered adults or the 42% still in school?

2. Channel success

It’s important to stay on target when evaluating where to advertise.

Connected TV (CTV) is in for a hot year, according to Interactive Advertising Bureau data. Our forecast backs this up, with a projection of 27.2% growth as CTV takes over a greater share of US digital ad spend. In contrast, while US social network ad spend will be up 8.8% from last year, it’s losing share to other digital ad channels.

Just because other marketers are focusing on a certain area doesn’t mean that channel is right for everyone. But it could be an indicator of where ads will see the most incremental gains.

3. Think fast! Because your audience will

“Attention must be earned in an instant,” said our analyst Paul Verna, speaking at our “Attention! Trends and Predictions for 2023” event.

Gen Z has a 1-second attention span, and older generations aren’t much better. But a lot of ad formats haven’t caught up to just how quickly they need to win consumers.

Snapchat has a high concentration of Gen Z users and short ads, while linear TV viewers trend older and its ads trend longer.

Winning consumers’ attention doesn’t necessarily mean 3-second ads, but it does mean being more creative. Begin your ad campaigns with the expectation that viewers will want to skip over them, then consider creative incentives like interactive play or deals to win their attention—and their clicks.

4. Consider your influence(r)

Influencer marketing remains a relatively inexpensive and engaging way to reach consumers, but keep in mind how different demographics interact with creators.

The majority of US adult social media users under 29 years old follow influencers, while about 41% actually make purchases based on influencer content, according to the Pew Research Center. Older consumers are less likely to follow and less likely to buy. But across the board, about 30% of US adult consumers have purchased something based on an influencer’s post.

As for platform preference, Instagram still has the highest share of influencer marketing spend in the US, but TikTok will take over the No. 2 spot from YouTube next year.

5. Measure those metrics

Just as important as building an ad campaign is tracking your ROI. Clickthrough rate is the leading metric for US marketers, according to StackAdapt, with cost per conversion and cost per click close behind.

As budgets slim, marketers have to do more with less. That means incrementality is key for 2023. While the shopping journey takes place across multiple channels, including in-person, it’s still vital to make sure your digital ad campaign yields a measurable result.

Adding it up: Digital advertising is more complicated than ever, but the basics still hold true. Advertisers need to:

  • Be intentional about targeting their specific audience.
  • Pay attention to ad format and channel when delivering ads.
  • Track ad performance and be willing to adjust based on what is and is not working.

This was originally featured in the eMarketer Daily newsletter. For more marketing insights, statistics, and trends, subscribe here.