Over the last ten years, we’ve seen the rise of a completely new way of thinking about advertising as a business.
Gone are traditional channels like print and television. Today, it’s all about digital first.
One of the key learnings for me as an executive over these last ten years? There’s no such thing as an industry that’s not in constant flux.
But when your business is built on the back of platforms you don’t own, it can be harrowing to weather the changing whims of algorithms like those on Google and Facebook — not to mention customer preferences, with brand new channels like TikTok, Twitch, and eSports. Who knows which of those will still be around in the next year?
5 ways to manage the constantly changing advertising industry
There’s no reason to despair, though. With a strong technology foundation like Salesforce Media Cloud in place, you can more easily adapt to every shift within the industry. Here’s how:
1. Know your data
The average number of data sources media companies integrate to run their advertisements today is a whopping 23. No wonder it’s so hard to adapt to these new changes!
With so much data flowing from completely different places, you’re probably looking at multiple systems just to get a partial picture of your performance: audience demographics in one place, website behavior in another, and social media ad performance in yet another.
Data is the foundation of any successful advertising campaign — which will be true even as we change channels and customer preferences — so making sure you know where your data is and what you have is especially important.
Creating a single, 360-degree view of that data? Well, that’s even better. Salesforce Media Cloud can integrate your data points seamlessly, surfacing up dashboards that make it easy to see at-a-glance what you need to know, when you need to know it.
2. Streamline your operations as much as possible
That tear-your-hair-out feeling from your brain moving a mile a minute all over the place? That feels like just another day in the life for advertising. That’s because somewhere in the last few years, advertising got really, really complicated. (See those 23 data sources I mentioned earlier!)
You’re managing multiple platforms, contracts, channels, and content. We’re already seeing new media types that never existed before, especially through the $25bn retail and ecommerce media market like Amazon, Target, and Walmart.
You need a way to streamline those operations as much as possible, with a single platform that allows you to:
- Manage licensing and contract negotiations
- Distribute content globally
- Automate and unify content and merchandise monetization strategies
With Salesforce Media Cloud, you can plan strategically for new channels, understand how they’re performing quickly and easily, and make sure your entire team is on the same page.
3. Stay clear and focused on your go-to-market strategy
Bulletproof businesses set clear, focused goals — and stick to them.
It’s OK to change your go-to-market (GTM) strategy. In fact, you should re-evaluate it often. But your strategy can’t be, “Be everywhere,” or “Be everything.” (Believe me, I’ve heard this in more than one client meeting.)
You have so many platforms to choose from, but you do need to choose. Depending on your audience, you might be looking at Google Ad Manager, Facebook Ad Manager, FreeWheel, and more. The more platforms you’re juggling, the harder it’s going to be to know what you’ll need from your technology. You don’t want to spend all that time and money choosing data integrations for platforms that ultimately you don’t end up using.
A strong go-to-market strategy also ensures you know why you’re investing in the technology in the first place, what ROI you’re hoping to achieve, and the additional value you’ll bring to your customers, too.
4. Take technological change one step at a time
Digital transformation projects take time. You’re not going to be able to snap your fingers and suddenly have streamlined operations, or new technology to support those operations.
I advise clients to follow the crawl-walk-run strategy. You don’t need all the bells and whistles right away. With the industry constantly changing, focus on exactly what you need at this moment, and know that adding Salesforce Media Cloud to your tech stack isn’t a one-and-done interaction.
Are some of Media Cloud’s features like accelerating sales, streamlining operations, and optimizing campaign performance on a converged platform super exciting? Definitely. But if you’re still planning media buying out of spreadsheets, let’s slow down a little and make sure you’re ready to get the most value out of the platform that you can, building up to that point.
Whether you’ve been using other Salesforce products for years or are just getting started with the platform, it’s a journey. Media Cloud can be completely customized to your specific needs, so make sure you go into the project with clear expectations on what you want, need, and are ready to use.
5. Don’t forget about change management
Change is hard.
We know this, and yet we still struggle with it. But that’s exactly what you have to get good at to make sure your business is bulletproof. Change management has a bit of a mysterious, buzzword-y reputation, but all it really means is focusing on the people side of any change that you make — or any major change in the industry.
Our framework comes down to three phases:
- Preparation: planning, team development, discovery, stakeholder identification, analysis, engagement, and assessing change readiness
- Execution: detailed stakeholder analysis, role and process change impact, communications, training, and reinforcement planning
- Reinforcement: ongoing support and training, monitoring outcomes and adoption, feedback and enhancements, and of course, celebrating a job well done
Change management requires sustained momentum so that your team feels engaged, supported, and heard as they embark upon using a new system. You want to keep up the momentum you’ve achieved with planning and implementing.
Make your advertising business bulletproof with Silverline
The partnership we have established with Salesforce Media Cloud and Salesforce’s continued investment and innovation positions Silverline to support growing organizations and springboard their digital transformation with Salesforce Media Cloud. We’re here to help agencies and companies alike revolutionize the way they go about media buying — putting you back in the driver’s seat.