Tips to Measure Your Programmatic Ad Campaign Successes

It's a well-known axiom that "what can't be measured, can't be improved." In terms of marketing, it's essential to understand how your campaigns are performing. Otherwise, how could you ever optimize your efforts to reach, engage with, and convert more customers?

Measuring campaign results can also help you understand which digital marketing tactics to focus on and how they contribute to your bottom-line goals (like conversions and sales). Let's take programmatic ads as one example of this principle in action. 

The Benefit of Programmatic Ads

Programmatic ads are ads purchased through a virtual "marketplace." This tactic involves using software to purchase online display ad space through a real-time bidding platform (RTB for short) that basically "auctions off" ad space. 

Programmatic ad networks stretch across thousands and thousands of websites and allow advertisers to reach a broad online audience. Even better, the "programmatic" part of programmatic ads enables businesses to focus their marketing efforts on specific audience segments and subsets. These ad networks can compile, parse, and analyze a massive amount of data to deliver targeted ads to the right people. In many respects, programmatic advertising is both cost and time-effective.

Tools to Measure Campaign Performance 

It's vital to measure the results from a programmatic ad campaign especially since the unstructured data that programmatic networks use can leverage real-time, up-to-date data within a matter of seconds. The following metrics provide insight into such initiatives: 

  • Impressions / reach = frequency. This set of metrics takes the total number of impressions one of your ads makes and divides it by the number of unique users you reached with that ad. The result is your frequency. In other words, if your ad yields 1,000 impressions and you reach 200 unique consumers, then your frequency would be 5 (or 1,000 / 200). These measurements provide valuable insight into how many people your ad reaches and how often it's delivered. 
  • Clicks and clickthrough rate (CTR). As the names suggest, these two metrics focus on the total number of clicks that an ad generates and the number of consumers who "click-through" to the ad's landing page versus the total number of consumers who saw the ad. 
  • Website view-through. You can measure website view-through in several different ways. It usually refers to visitors who saw your ad but did not click on it, then returned to your website in the next 30 days. You can measure it by comparing who clicked on an ad and combining that action with how many visitors were delivered the ad also came back within 30 days. It helps give you a metric of ad effectiveness based on increasing customer awareness.  

As you can tell, these and other metrics can help you to determine how well a programmatic ad campaign is performing in terms of tangible results (clicks, visitors to your site, and conversions).  

Optimize Tracking with On-Page Pixels 

On-page pixels (or "tags") are snippets of code that collect information about visitors to your website and may even trigger certain events or actions when specific conditions occur. Think of those tracking pixels as a little red flag attached to the consumer whenever they visit your site. Pixel tracking provides value by collecting data on how your customers interact with your website and receive your messages. 

If you want to take your programmatic ad game to the next level (and have enough time and technical know-how), then you can incorporate tracking pixels into your on-page design. By doing so, you'll gain deeper insights into your consumer base, identify specific users that may be strong lead opportunities, and even persuade some visitors to engage with your site and business more fully. 

However, try to use these on-page pixels sparingly. Usually, it's best to place them at intervals to help you separate "casual" traffic from more dedicated readers (e.g., within download links or further down the web page).  

With judicious use of tracking pixels, you'll be better able to determine ROI and track your audience for more granular targeting in the future. 

Measuring the Success of Your Programmatic Ads with an Experienced Digital Partner 

Programmatic ad campaigns are just one aspect of an effective marketing strategy. When you can measure their reach and impact accurately, you're well on your way to performance optimization. 

Developing and implementing the technical framework in which these ad campaigns operate (such as on-page pixels) may not be in your wheelhouse. Or you may be dealing with resource constraints that won't allow you to pursue such objectives further. Whatever the case may be, partnering with an experienced, reputable digital partner may be the perfect solution for you. With your agency's help, you'll be able to more effectively measure your campaign successes and leverage them into even greater successes down the road.


Schedule a Free Consultation | Federated Digital Solutions


Brittney Skoczylas

Written by Brittney Skoczylas

Brittney Skoczylas is a Digital Marketing Consultant for Federated Digital Solutions. Her passion is helping to generate measurable results for her clients by creating customized & targeted marketing strategies that will engage a consumer wherever they are in the buying journey. Brittney’s #1 focus is to help local businesses improve their digital marketing footprint.

Recent Posts