To answer a comment made by one of my readers, I’d like to expound a bit more on an interesting business that affects all companies looking to advertise over print media. I was in Singapore on a business trip when I came across AdTag applied in one of the local newspapers. Sleek, simple and well integrated, the “AdTag” brings about a different dynamic to tracking and analyzing your companies advertising expenditure and efficiency. I’ll leave it up to the website to give a company introduction: (http://www.adtaggers.com/about-us.html). What I find fascinating is the manner in which this “AdTag” tracks print media.
Imagine your company has $100,000 to spend on a print advertisement. Traditionally you would choose a magazine or newspaper publication that research companies or your own experience has proven to bring the most readers in your target market. Your options are mostly limited to the type (readers, distribution, demographic, etc.), length of time, and location (on the publication). Even with these options, there is no real way of tracking the effect that this $100,000 has brought back to your company. Do you spend it all on one advertisement in a large publication, or over several smaller publications? How do you keep your marketing moneys efficient?
Enter AdTag, a small in unobtrusive image on your advertisement that generates and organizes data gathered from the readers. By promising readers who text the specific “AdTag” number the chance to win an incentive, this company ensures a steady flow of participants who in turn, make up the sample group which represents the public. Each of the combinations of numbers that you text in, correspond to a specific publication/advertisement- basically the barcode of the system.
Let us say that your company runs 1 advertisement in 1 magazine for 1 week (1 + 1 + 1), applying the AdTag service. Upon the termination of the campaign you should have:
1) A good estimate on the total amount of readers that glanced over your campaign.
2) The days and hours of each day had the heaviest traffic.
3) Which locations attracted the most hits.
4) Basic reader demographics (gender/age: through Mobile numbers).
Best of all, your company will have the ability to compare all of the different variables of your information against each other.
Taking this a step further, imagine that the advertisement you placed was not 1 + 1 + 1, but actually 3 different advertisements over 6 different types of publications (2 magazines, 2 newspapers and 2 Billboards) with varying launch dates and duration. From the information that AdTag gathers, you should be able to compare all 6 outlets with each other, analyzing the publics reaction to the ad, location, publication, time of day, who it attracted based off gender/age, and a whole lot more. It might even tell you a bit more about the strength of the marketing companies you use to generate your ads. Presently, advertising groups offer some way (quite weakly) to estimate the effect of most of these points, but there are no companies that I am aware of at the moment that can best AdTag in terms of estimation AND comparison of the different variables. Companies looking to spend money on print media advertisements can now sift through their advertising options with surgical precision. This will be print media’s best friend or worst enemy, it remains to be seen which one.
Interestingly enough, this “AdTag” does not necessarily have to be applied to advertisements. It can potentially track articles (interest in specific authors or subject matter), movie posters (interest in location), etc. With this new shift towards tracking the metrics behind print media advertising, I see an abundance of possibilities with the information gathered. Enough historical data can paint a fairly accurate picture on trends in the economy/public while monitoring the direction of public interest, at least within the realm of print media. How accurate this information will be has yet to be judged, but I do think that we are taking a step in the right direction.