Digiday+ Research: Independent agencies have little confidence in many digital advertising channels

Digiday 14 Sep 2021 04:01
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The lead image shows an illustration of two people measuring a TV with a ruler.
September 14, 2021 by Max Willens

Wanamaker’s dilemma is alive and well in digital advertising. 

As brands and agencies continue to figure out how a raft of privacy-related changes will affect their ability to target and measure ads, they are being forced to reconsider channels that many had shaky confidence in, to begin with, according to new Digiday+ research.

In the third quarter of 2021, Digiday polled agencies and brand professionals about several different topics, including which widely used advertising channels drive marketing success, with the focus principally on digital platforms. 

Digiday broke out the results among 70 respondents who work at independent agencies, defined as those not owned by holding companies.

The data quantifies something that has been widely understood in digital media for a while: That Facebook and Google dominate the digital ads space.

62% of respondents said Google accounts for at least a “large portion” of the ad spending they do for clients, with about a third of that total saying Google accounted for a “very large” portion; another 14% of respondents said the same (at least “large”) about YouTube. Similarly, 50% of respondents said Facebook accounted for at least a “large portion” of client ad spending, and another 46% said the same about Instagram.

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