By Mark Hanzlik, Executive Director
If you missed Sam Slaughter’s frank look the almighty pageview in his Digiday post earlier this week, give it a quick review. It’s a short but awfully clear-headed view of the state of the brand advertising in the current digital environment. He calls pageviews’ bridesmaids (metrics impressions and click-through rates) or more likely co-dependents in the practice of measuring traffic.
“Chasing pageviews is almost universal in the digital media world, and it leads to an almost universally crappy user experience,” Slaughter summarizes in his post. He admits, pageviews work for direct-marketing advertising but when it comes to brand awareness and sales, it’s a miserable experience for those on all sides.
“Great brand advertising doesn’t just reach people, it influences them,” an often quoted mantra in agency shops from Manhattan to Los Angeles sounds like a Don Draper line though maybe not as sexy or introspective. This points toward a need to influence and/or engage the consumer in a more meaningful way which clearly cannot happen in a direct-marketing driven scenario.
But there is some good news. Some brands are waking up, starting to drift away from standard banner ads and moving toward the Holy Grail of online ad space, quality original content. It will take a lot more advertising decision-makers’ embracing this kind of thinking before we’ll really see the almighty pageview and the rest of its’ wedding party retreat from view.