There has been a lot of hype around the launch of the Google Ad Planner. Many questions have surfaced; Will it replace ComScore and/or QuantCast? Is Google trying to steal agency business, etc., etc., etc…..
Well, I’ve gained access to the Beta for Ad Planner and I am here to voice my opinion. First of all, I don’t see it replacing anything or anyone – I’m sure most online strategists will agree – the more the merrier. Each tool – @plan, AdRelevance, Hitwise, ComScore, QuantCast, Alexa, QuantCast and Google Ad Planner all have their role to play in a media strategy. A good media strategy takes information from all of these sources into account and looks for the most effective way for the advertiser to achieve their online marketing goals and objectives.
Once the strategy is in place, the media plan itself should be based on data (and a pinch of planner intuition). First there is the publisher data -placements, pricing, creative formats. Next,publisher data needs to be paired with forecast data; either from historical client results, Media Two historical results or planner experience. Once the plan is compiled using the numbers, it is usually clear which pubs have a shot at being successful in meeting the goals.
Most importantly, no online direct response campaign should be left alone, the real work is “after-the-buy “. This is where the best interactive agencies distinguish themselves and where Media Two prides itself. Third party ad serving provides the data, but it takes human experts in interactive to continually optimize the campaign.
So, my opinion, Google Ad Planner is just another tool, use it to compile your research. It will never replace the human factor that is necessary to run a smart online marketing campaigns.