Trying to scale your digital advertising agency year after year and not seeing the results you desire? You’re not alone. In an attempt to take on more clients and serve them well, many media buying agencies struggle to manage growing demands effectively.
Often managing a range of ad platforms manually, they find themselves overwhelmed with fragmented, inaccurate data and cumbersome operations that stand in their way of making more clients happy with less work.
But it doesn’t have to be this way. In today’s article, we’ll cover five ways that can transform your agency and help you scale. This isn’t your typical “media buying solution” article. We aim to help you redefine how you do business, decide which changes are most critical, and take the highest-impacting actions.
1) Save Thousands of Dollars a Year Per Employee (Without Hurting Anyone’s Job Security or Pay)
The estimated base salary for an ad salesperson in the US is $70,067 a year, according to Glassdoor. With bonuses, it crosses the 6 figures mark. As you know, a good ad salesperson is worth every penny. But is your media buying agency making the most of its intelligence, experience, and talent?
Too many companies have disconnected systems that take up their talents’ resources and keep them from shining as bright as they can for their organizations.
We ran the numbers to give you an indication.
Study #1: 32 Lost Days
- “Most workers toggle between apps 10 times an hour, which equates to up to 32 days lost in workplace productivity, according to… research from RingCentral,” reported Forbes in 2018.
- For simplicity sake, let’s count it as one month, and only reference the average ad salesperson’s base salary as listed above. It means wasting $5,838.9 a year per ad salesperson.
Study #2: 9% of Work Time Wasted
- Four years later, in 2022, Harvard Business Review reported another study, sharing that “workers toggled roughly 1,200 times each day, which adds up to just under four hours each week reorienting themselves after toggling – roughly 9% of their time at work.”
- Again, let’s only reference the average ad salesperson’s base salary as listed above. 9% of $70,067 is $6,306 a year per ad salesperson.
It’s Time to Move Away from Disconnected Systems
Not all media buying agencies operate exactly the same. You’ll need to run your own numbers to get an accurate picture. But whatever your actual figure is, you’re bound to gain by unifying your systems:
- Ad salespeople are just the beginning. As we’ll cover later in the article, many other departments, such as finance, will be able to give you more when they’re not busy toggling between apps.
- Disconnected systems require way more training time for new employees, which means you’re taking too long to recover hiring expenses. “The average cost per hire [is] nearly $4,700. But many employers estimate the total cost to hire a new employee can be three to four times the position’s salary,” reports the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM). Simplify the process, and let your new people do what you hired them to do. It’ll free up your long-time pros to focus on growth activities, too.
And perhaps most importantly…
2) Get a 360 Degree View of All Your Advertising Data
Many teams at media buying agencies live and breathe data. They use media buying software, website analytics, social listening, and a wealth of other tools to discover, among others…
- Which messaging works best for which audiences.
- Which campaigns didn’t work – AKA what *doesn’t* interest prospects and/or causes the opposite effect and gets them walking in the other direction.
- What they’re interested in now – what they’re searching, clicking on, spending more time reading, signing up for, putting in their carts… and so much more.
But when you use disconnected systems, you get disconnected, partial, and sometimes conflicting data. It means you might be wasting money or missing opportunities without even knowing it.
- Each system measures different KPIs and measures them in different ways.
- Even if you have consistency on some KPIs, some systems change their rules or features, and you’re suddenly left in the dark.
- Your team has to do a lot of manual work to turn all these different data points into one cohesive, actionable game plan. They’re human and they’ve got a lot on their plates. Even the best ones can’t compete with smart media buying software when it comes to real-time data processing – and it’s not what you hired them to do either.
No wonder that “investments in data segments, including data, data services, platforms, and identity are projected to increase 7% year over year,” as Marketing Dive reported in early 2023. But the idea is to use fewer tools, better tools, not more.
Giving all revenue-generating teams the necessary 360-degree view of company data, and therefore making it holistic and accessible within one platform (of course, on a need-to-know basis to protect privacy and security) can set your company up for more efficient growth activities. You’ll be able to make faster, more informed decisions on campaigns, and generate better results for clients with the same (or even smaller) budget.
As the data below shows, it’s getting more essential than ever.
3) Get a Better Understanding of Your Inventory
If your media buying agency doesn’t have clear visibility of its inventory, it’s easy to find yourself…
- Overcommitting on ad space you don’t have.
- Missing opportunities to place ads in high-demand spaces.
- Inaccurately tracking and reporting on campaigns (and certainly not doing so in real-time).
As the economic uncertainty continues, many media budgets get evaluated more frequently. 45% told the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) that they intend to reevaluate on a monthly basis. Media buying agencies that want to retain and expand their client base have to be at the top of their game.
One of the reasons we started ADvendio is to help agencies transition from a partial media buying solution to true ad management software that puts them in the driver’s seat. We still get excited seeing the transformation that happens when companies can finally forecast their inventory accurately and optimize their ad efforts. It almost feels magical to see what accurate media planning, performance and return on ad spend data can do.
It’s probably what some people feel when they accurately forecast sports results, just with a bigger impact on people’s livelihood and the (hopefully positive) change they create with their brands.
4) Improve Your *Real* ROAS
Media buying agencies manage a range of DSPs, ad servers, social media platforms… you name it. Each platform or vendor has its own way to analyze data and measure performance. Each has its own rules, which sometimes get changed.
Too often, agencies don’t have a centralized media buying solution and end up with campaign management inefficiencies and mistakes that can easily be prevented with media buying software that’s more accurately built for their needs.
Alternatively, when your digital advertising agency has consistent, integrated, reliable performance data management, you can improve…
- Trade identification
- Decision making
Media buying agencies who do this grow more efficiently. They both…
- Drive better results for their clients, and
- Produce more profitable internal operations
5) Optimize Your Financial Operations
When you think of a digital advertising agency, you probably think of the glamorous world of PPC, CPL, and, of course, button copy. What often gets left behind is the nice people in finance who make sure we have money to serve clients well.
To help them help you, let go of your silos and provide a comprehensive workflow integration across media planning tools and CRM systems that provides a holistic view of all relevant departments. Think of them when you choose tools for your team, including ad management software. Ensure that finance can accurately calculate client commissions, discounts for clients, billing stats, and ROAS. Their deep understanding of what’s actually going on with your business will set the entire business to success.
Make All This Happen with Less, But Smarter, Tools
We’ve been talking a lot about ad management software products in this article because we believe you don’t have to do it alone. And it’s not recommended to do it manually, either. To truly scale your media buying agency, you need tools that streamline and automate the parts of the work that keep you from growing.
But with the average company managing 172-664 apps, according to the Zylo 2023 report, it might sound overwhelming. It doesn’t have to be. Breaking silos and unifying data could actually mean a smaller amount of apps for you, but ones that drive big results.
Our ad management software, ADvendio, simplifies your work on this front too. It provides a centralized view of your advertising data, which you previously had to gather from a bunch of platforms. This way, you can finally have accurate, unified data measurement and ROAS reporting across silos and business functions. You can also automate business activities, such as easily reconciling and billing for campaigns, so that your people can focus on revenue-generating strategies.
We want to help your company become one of the leading media buying agencies around. Book a personalized demo today to see what’s possible.