Happy Holiday Season! 3 Tips for Maxing Out Your Q4 Campaigns

The natural cycle of marketing spending dictates that the end of every month, quarter and year sees the most spending from advertisers looking to finish out their budgets, and as a result, the latter half of Q4 is usually the busiest time of the year for marketers.

In some cases, clients with high budgets later in the year become afraid to touch anything – they just make sure things are stable and ride it out through the holiday spending season. My advice? Don’t ride it out – this is the most important time to be firmly in control of your programmatic campaigns to maximize the results from higher holiday spending.

You can start by paying close attention to data that informs your holiday strategies. There’s a lot to be surmised from interactive analytics that allow you to drill down on data in unconventional ways – here’s a few tips to keep in mind as the year comes to a close.

Non-continuous Time Comparisons

Everyone knows that Black Friday is the busiest spending day of the year… or is it Cyber Monday? Online spending for Black Friday and Cyber Monday were both north of $3 billion in 2016, hitting all-time records for each day in consumer spending. But unless you’ve held on to data from previous years of programmatic spending, you might be in the dark on how clients of different types have performed on those dates in years past. If you don’t save data that long, consider it to save yourself some work next year.

Even without historical data, you can learn a lot about which days should be treated differently. Consider non-continuous time comparisons by looking at Cyber Monday vs. Black Friday, or vs. an average Monday during the year to see how they compare in total spending, or spending by client. That might help you identify specific pieces of inventory that will be more valuable to you on Cyber Monday than they would be throughout the year.    

Refining Your Alerts

Setting up different alerts for each of your buyers this season is also a critical step. If you’re monitoring a client’s spend, you want to make sure spending doesn’t drop by a large percentage during this crucial digital marketing season – and if you do see drops, you want to be able to know immediately so you can make adjustments to get spending back on track. These alerts should be tweaked from the normal alerts you have during the year, because as holiday spending increases you’ll have different standards for what constitutes a significant drop off and requires action.

Consider New Forms of Visualizations

In a recent blog post we described how many of our clients use the Heat Map feature in Metamarkets Explore to discover gaps in their bid landscape. This can also be a great tool to use in the holiday season. During the holidays, you could visualize what type of inventory receives the highest click-through rate by plotting inventory types on different publishers. Or, you could use the Heat Map to optimize (i.e. raise) price floors by showing the degree to which bid prices rise during Q4 across types of inventory or various other dimensions.  

For more suggestions on how to optimize your campaigns, we have a slew of how-to blog posts that show how Metamarkets Explore can help you drill-down on your data to drive more revenue. Check those posts out at the link below and reach out to us if you have any questions during this busy season. Happy Holidays!

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