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For media and marketing agency Frontier Australia, performance is key. Founded in 1998, the Sydney-based agency strives to deliver measurable and effective results for clients while helping drive brand awareness and recognition. With its data-centric approach, the agency focuses on maximizing campaign performance through cross-platform advertising, helping clients plan, create, launch, and measure media campaigns.
We recently caught up with Denver Rego, Head of Biddable Media at Frontier Australia, to get his thoughts on balancing performance with brand-building, measuring campaign success, and working with Broadsign Ads (formerly Campsite) to launch exciting pDOOH campaigns for clients.
The balance between brand-building and performance marketing
As Head of Biddable Media, Denver’s role supports agency teams in delivering their best digital strategies while integrating them within a wider marketing mix. With KPIs being a primary focus of Frontier, Denver also ensures that all digital activities are planned and executed in line with client expectations. The team works with clients to achieve KPIs beyond traditional metrics, ensuring that any planned or bought media can correlate to business outcomes like leads, website traffic, or revenue-based goals. And as today’s media landscape shifts in a post-pandemic world, the agency is focusing on optimizing specific channels that are experiencing a resurgence as consumer behaviour changes.
We’re now seeing an influx in channels like out-of-home (OOH), cinema, and streaming services like CTV as advertisers resume spend that was scaled back or paused during lockdowns. According to Denver, this demonstrates that the media landscape is constantly changing, and there needs to be more flexibility in distributing content where consumers are spending time. As a result, advertisers must diversify their marketing efforts to include campaigns that drive brand awareness. Striking a balance between brand-building and performance advertising is essential, and this topic is a big focus of conversation for Frontier and its clients, particularly around KPIs and how to measure brand-building. “We want our clients to grow,” he says. “If the focus is only on short-term performance goals, there’s a long-term growth element that gets left on the table.” With the current economic conditions around the world, it’s not surprising that many brands are prioritizing short-term sales, but as Denver tells us, it’s important to have a complete view of what the next couple of years will look like and not neglect the importance of brand awareness.
Transparency is also a hot topic in the programmatic media market. More education is needed throughout the industry, and Denver explains that agencies working on behalf of advertisers need to be transparent with clients on fees and how media is being bought. “We need to make sure we’re constantly having those conversations with clients and acting as true business partners. Being transparent is probably the best thing we can do for our client relationships,” he says.
Where does pDOOH fit within an omnichannel media plan?
Frontier’s clients have more options available now that the OOH market is growing again. “In terms of the role of OOH, I still see the medium as a brand-building and contextual channel in its simplest form,” says Denver. Many of the agency’s fashion clients rely on OOH during the year when they’re launching a new season or collection. “With pDOOH, we have additional flexibility to be more tactical while complimenting the wider media mix.”
Typical buys are usually done based on format, with many clients going after large-format providers. According to Denver, audience-based buys are always a consideration, particularly when it comes to reach and frequency, but the shining star of programmatic is the ability to adjust campaigns based on data triggers. “Where we can get nuanced is using triggers, particularly if it’s raining, if it’s hot or cold, or if certain news is prevalent. If we want to focus on one or two particular locations within a specific market, we can do that as well,” he says.
Frontier’s advertising clients will typically lean on the agency for information on purchasing ads programmatically. “We take the opportunity to have discussions with clients around how we plan and buy DOOH ads programmatically because it is different than traditional OOH. There are a few nuances, and we just need to educate our clients around the pros and cons of each way of buying media,” Denver explains. In terms of KPIs, the agency focuses on ensuring that they’re delivering in terms of budget and reach perspective, delivering on the impression multiplier goals, and in terms of costs. As reporting becomes more granular, they expect to be evaluating changes in impressions when ads are served on a day-by-day or weekly basis. For example, impressions spike in retail environments on a Saturday when people are out and about. “We look at the overall big picture, but we also look at micro trends to see if we can uncover anything as well,” says Denver.
As we get closer to living in a cookieless world, Denver predicts that the nature of pDOOH will continue to evolve, making it easier to plan and buy ads. As such, advertisers will need to lean into the experience and focus on the role that context plays in a successful campaign. Advertisers will need to have multiple strategies to diversify their media, and one of those strategies is making sure they’re placing brand messaging in the right contextual environments to reach the right audiences. As a newer medium compared to other channels, the steep learning curve can be a big hindrance but also the biggest opportunity for many advertisers. “You’ve got a bit of a roadblock when there are traditional marketers that are a little hesitant to jump into a new environment,” says Denver. “There’s an education factor needed for a wider adoption of pDOOH in a changing media landscape.”
Planning and executing pDOOH campaign with Broadsign Ads
Before turning to Broadsign Ads to plan and execute client campaigns, the team at Frontier would contact each media owner individually to ask what inventory and specs they had. Broadsign Ads helped to standardize the process of buying ad space, explains Denver, eliminating the need to talk with multiplier media owners which takes time when you have to look at availability, negotiate rates, and consider the nuances of different types of client advertising, like alcohol for example.
“With Broadsign Ads, [executing pDOOH campaigns] is very straightforward. That time is saved when you can jump into the platform because you don’t really need to have a lot of those conversations. The ease of which you can [launch a campaign] saves you a lot of time effectively, then you can spend more time optimizing campaigns and measuring effectiveness.”
On a usability level, the team appreciates the fact that campaign proposals can be created and shared with clients immediately. “From an ease of use perspective, Broadsign Ads ticks that box. For transparency, clients can see exactly what they’re going to be buying and where, particularly with the location group that’s available. If there are particular inclusions or exclusions, we can do that as well.” They also find it extremely easy to use the platform compared to other digital platforms. “The design and user interface allow for someone at all levels of experience to use it. Anyone can jump in and plan an OOH campaign,” Denver tells us.
The platform’s dynamic location grid makes it easy for the team to select inventory based on the clients’ campaign parameters, featuring images of actual formats within those locations. This is especially useful for Frontier when their clients have particular location preferences. Denver gives the example of a client who wanted to ensure that no ads were displayed in any gas stations. Using the location grid, the agency was able to remove all gas stations in the agreed-upon locale. “It makes the conversation with the client much more productive because you’re both on the same level of understanding. You can show them exactly what can be done in real time, and they can change whatever they want in terms of campaign parameters. The flexibility is the best thing within Broadsign Ads.”
“I really like the ease of use of Broadsign Ads, and the user interface is extremely user-friendly. The planning tools and the ability to chop and change proposals within a matter of seconds are a huge benefit to agencies. The platform is easy to learn as the workflows are largely similar to other digital platforms, and the ability to layer multiple targeting strategies like location triggers and data triggers is a huge strength.”
Denver Rego, Head of Biddable Media at Frontier Australia
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