In the ever-evolving landscape of digital advertising, staying ahead of the curve is paramount. A recent panel discussion featuring industry pioneers Marc Guldimann, Debbie Rosenthal-Davies, and Chloe Nicholls delved into the nuances of attention metrics, shedding light on their relevance and challenges.  

Attention metrics are fairly recent to the advertising industry and are a form of data that help to measure media quality and creative efficiency. These metrics give brands greater transparency on the value of their media investment and control in optimising towards more efficient and impactful results. 

This event not only highlighted the potential of these metrics but also exposed the hesitations and misunderstandings that are prevalent in the industry. 

Unravelling the Themes 

Understanding the Complexity of Attention Metrics: 

Marc Guldimann, CEO of Adelaide, emphasised the diversity of solutions available in the market. He argued that this diversity prevents suppliers from manipulating their supply chains, reminiscent of the challenges faced with viewability metrics in the past. His advice was clear: measure attention metrics without giving in to the temptation of optimisation. Marc’s reminder not to let perfection hinder progress seemed to resonate with the audience and definitely did with my own experience in digital media.  

The Need for Unified Solutions: 

Chloe Nicholls, Head of Ad Tech at IAB UK, pointed out the industry’s craving for a single, seamless solution for easy migration between suppliers. This demand, as she highlighted, could be a response to concerns about a lack of clarity in measurement. She noted that publishers are beginning to appreciate the advantages of attentive ads, leading to potentially higher CPMs. Nicholls urged industry players to leverage this technology now, emphasising that highly attentive formats are undervalued but effective. 

Proving the Value of Attention: 

Debbie Rosenthal-Davies, Head of Solutions, UK at MIQ revealed that MIQ collaborates with various attention suppliers and has a strategic partnership with Adelaide. Debbie stressed the importance of proving the value of attention metrics by aligning them with desired outcomes. This approach ensures that attention becomes a valuable alternative for success, rather than an isolated metric.

Facing the Challenges: Industry Concerns Unveiled 

However, the open forum discussion that followed the panel session revealed a different side of the story. Attendees expressed their concerns and reservations, pointing out several roadblocks hindering the widespread adoption of attention metrics.  

Some attendees highlighted the dominance of major clients in the industry, who are primarily judged by auditors based on price alone. For them, paying a premium for attention metrics seems impractical, despite the potential benefits. This perspective raises crucial questions about the industry’s fixation on immediate cost savings versus long-term value. 

Several independent agencies were hesitant to embrace attention metrics until major holding companies adopted them. This cautious approach highlights a reluctance to innovate and a preference for a ‘wait and see’ attitude, which might hold up progress in the long run. 

One notable concern revolved around the cost of optimising for attention metrics. Despite MIQ’s offer to absorb some of these costs, some agencies remained hesitant, citing financial constraints as a barrier to adoption. 

Embracing Innovation 

In conclusion, the event left a cautious optimism, highlighting the industry’s potential but also its persistent hesitations. While major players continue to lead the way, there’s a need for bravery and innovation among smaller, independent agencies. Waiting for others to take the first step might provide temporary comfort, but it stifles progress and slows the industry’s ability to evolve. 

The key takeaway from this discussion is clear: embrace innovation, be brave, and take that leap. Engage with MIQ on attention metrics and incorporate them into your campaigns. By doing so, you not only stay ahead of the curve but also contribute to reshaping the future of digital advertising.  Why wouldn’t you if MIQ are prepared to help with the greatest barrier – cost? 

In a world where change is the only constant, being a pioneer rather than a follower is what sets industry leaders apart. Let’s challenge the status quo, debunk the myths surrounding attention metrics, and pave the way for a more innovative and dynamic advertising landscape.  

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