Marketer’s guide to media planning software in 2019
Marketers and agencies are faced with unique planning and reporting challenges in an expanding media and advertising landscape that is increasingly led by a mobile-first market.
To manage the complex requirements of media planning, performance tracking, reporting and budgeting, the industry is turning to paid media management platforms to free up resources and work more efficiently.
Marketing campaign management software has a wide range of benefits for time-poor marketers – provided it is properly researched and resourced.
We can help with that.
To introduce you to the paid media management landscape and guide you through the process of choosing a marketing campaign management software, we first need to look at where the need for these platforms arises.
The US digital advertising market surpassed US$100 billion for the first time in 2018, making up more than one-third of the US$283 billion global digital advertising market. Neither show any signs of slowing down . For marketers, agencies and clients, the need to optimize spend for maximum ROI has never been greater.
In 2018 , social media accounted for nearly one-third of digital ad spend overall in the US, while digital video is rapidly gaining momentum, growing more than 65% in revenue terms from 2017 to 2018.
Every year new biddable marketplaces become available while at the same time ad formats continue to diversify and become more sophisticated. Just a few years ago digital video was the bleeding edge of advertising; in 2019 nearly two-thirds  of digital ad spend is allocated to video.
Media planning needs to adapt.
Keeping on top of emerging advertising opportunities while maximizing cut-through in high performing marketplaces with smart marketing decisions requires transparency and a freeing-up of resources. This is where paid media management platforms help both agencies and marketers.
Consumers continue to increase  the amount they spend on entertainment and media such as streaming services, media subscriptions and online news. Where the consumer goes, advertising will naturally be expected to follow.
As campaign portfolios grow and diversify into new areas, the ability to access real-time performance data, analyze budget breakdowns and instantly create reports for clients or the C-suite is more in demand than ever.
At a glance, marketers need to see how their placements are performing to justify spend, make a case for more budget, or adjust the mix based on what areas are driving results.
Good data enables smart decisions.
Marketing professionals are faced with more clients demanding granular data, rapidly evolving paid media platforms and algorithms, and an increasingly complex mix for every campaign.
It’s a wonder marketers have time to check their emails!
Increasingly, clients are requesting mid-campaign assessments on top of post-campaign reports to ensure dollars are being funneled into the most effective areas.
For marketers using manual spreadsheet systems to track campaigns across several platforms, reporting is a time-consuming process (not to mention the human error risk) and yet one-third of marketers and nearly 50% of agencies reported working this way  as recently as 2016.
Nearly a quarter of digital agencies  reported time management as their single biggest challenge last year, second only to winning new business.
How do we solve this problem?
Automating tedious tasks through a media management platform saves countless hours, ensures accuracy in reporting, and provides a single source of accurate campaign data.
- Increased productivity: Let the platform take over the tedious tasks and free up time with instantly generated reports and data you can read at a glance, freeing up resources to focus on other tasks.
- Streamlined reporting: At the click of a button you have clean, attractive omnichannel marketing reports ready for the C-suite or your client’s marketing team without spending hours pulling together and cross-checking data.
- Data integration: Keep all media plans and activities, reports, documents, budgets and conversations in one place with an integrated media planning tool that securely stores all the information your team needs to make informed decisions.
- Budget control: Track and adjust budgets on multichannel marketing campaigns confidently through a single media planning tool, rather than manually reconciling several detailed and confusing spreadsheets.
- Encourage collaboration: Most cloud-based media management platforms allow for multiple users at a time for teams, agencies and clients to collaborate efficiently.
- Scalability: Media management platforms are built to scale as your marketing campaigns demand, giving you and your clients plenty of room to grow.
Paid media management platforms alleviate the time stresses of reporting and analysis for agencies and marketers juggling multiple client campaigns while also providing an accessible way to deep dive on campaign data without risk of human error.
Time and resources freed up by a marketing performance management software can be shifted to focus on pursuing new clients and improving the creative of existing campaigns.
Building a business case for a paid media management platform first requires an in-depth look at the company’s specific needs, as well as existing resources and support structures.
Not all media planning tools are built alike.
Marketing plan reporting software or marketing resource management software, for example, does not replace the vital human insight behind media strategy and what your competitors use might not be relevant for you.
The first step is to understand in detail the marketing processes currently in place and identify areas for improvement in order to set self-identified targets for success.
Measuring ROI remains a challenge for the majority of digital marketers, especially  in paid social campaigns so identifying measures of success is critical for winning management’s support.
Know what you need to succeed?
With your organization’s needs as a filter, use these questions to guide decision making:
- Who will manage the software? Once the platform is rolled out, who is your main point of contact, and does their team understand how to leverage the platform to unlock the most value from the data they have?
- What’s best for your brand; full service, self-serve or half and half? Different media management tools offer differing levels of consultation and customer support, so it is important to map out the internal knowledge base.
- Are social media and display integrations important to your marketing reporting? Integrating every marketing channel into one clearly displayed overview will save valuable hours monitoring multichannel campaigns, so if this is important a third-party platform will provide value for your campaigns.
- Could you benefit from automated reporting? Detailed mid-campaign assessments and post-campaign reports can be automated with a third-party software, giving your team the agility to respond immediately to reporting questions with transparent, accurate data.
- What does success look like? Knowing your KPIs and benchmarks for success going in is vitally important so you can test whether the tools you are investigating allow you to measure, and streamline, achievement.
- Can you afford it? An all-important question for the decision makers in your business; make sure you know the cost structure of the campaign management platform including any additional costs for training, integration, or bolt-on services.
A good marketing and campaign management software not only streamlines work efforts and increases efficiency for marketers and agencies, it helps organizations and agency clients to improve their bottom line.
By presenting good data – the basis of any good marketing decision – enterprise marketing management platforms empower the kinds of marketing decisions that lead to increased consumer engagement.
Mediatool is all about good data.
Mediatool is an integrated marketing campaign management software built for the challenges faced by marketers and agencies. The platform offers fully customizable dashboards and multi-user access, allowing for efficient collaboration in even the most diverse campaign.
With Mediatool you have access to a crystal-clear view of your entire marketing campaign, from planning to performance, in one centralized hub.
Marketers and agencies benefit from integrated collaboration tools that allow teams to communicate and share media plans, budgets and reporting without needing to leave the platform.
At the same time, data control on an individual user level is in your hands, giving you the ability to customize the types of data different people in your team can see and edit.
Everyone has exactly what they need.
For agencies needing to manage multiple clients in one media management platform, a single Mediatool account can hold all your client marketing plans. Different clients are stored individually under the one agency account, giving you easy access to client-specific dashboards in just a few clicks.
Access an overview of your entire marketing effort, from traditional to digital and social, in one intuitive dashboard.
Mediatool seamlessly integrates digital marketing platforms like Google Campaign Manager, Google AdWords, Facebook and Instagram, Google Analytics and more alongside online display and video, search marketing, and traditional formats such as print and TV.
All the stats are right there in front of you.
Mediatool’s intuitive dashboard provides all the information you need, customized according to what matters most for your campaign or client.
Once a campaign is approved, Mediatool assists with the tedious tasks that consume a marketer’s precious time:
- Insertion orders
- Easy-to-read media flowcharts
- Real time performance tracking across all ad formats
- Budget tracking
- Save templates for easy campaign duplication
Collaboration continues throughout the campaign with multi-user access to Mediatool’s intuitive dashboard and reporting areas. Campaign calendars are laid out clearly for marketers, agencies and clients to easily track which creative is launching where, how it is performing, and where the budget is being spent.
Mediatool’s customizable overview allows you to answer even the most complicated queries easily. You have the ability to evaluate your data by market, brand, product, media channel and more with our detailed, easy-to-understand spending and performance overviews.
With Mediatool, you can compare data such as sales, store visits, and final orders against your initial media investments to visualize the correlation between media investments and ultimate results.
Reporting to clients and management has traditionally been one of the most daunting, time-consuming tasks for marketers and agencies. Thanks to Mediatool’s integrated data streams, generating professional and visually captivating reports is as simple as a few clicks.
Bypass antiquated reporting of the past with intuitive reporting tools that allow you to deep dive on performance data, budgets and campaign plans.
No more 10pm spreadsheet crashes!
Streamlined, integrated, intuitive and customizable: Mediatool is a marketing campaign management system designed for marketers and agencies seeking growth and results.
With a flexible all-in-one media management system that allows you to plan, collaborate, analyze and report on all campaign areas, Mediatool will help your team to work more efficiently and deliver results on demand.
Request a free demonstration of Mediatool to find out how the platform can work for your business.