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The value of attention: How are metric driven CMOs measuring success?

4 min read - by Erin Dunsford - Media Strategy Director and Sarah Cowen - Biddable Planning Senior Lead

The media industry continues to make conscious efforts to move away from clicks as the sole measure of success. Twogether’s Media Strategy Director, Erin Dunsford, examines attention metrics – a newer metric which agencies are turning to, to extract value from their data.

As marketing budgets are being worked harder than ever, having a full spectrum of metrics to evaluate becomes even more important. The emerging discipline of attention metrics is signalling a potentially change in how modern B2B CMOs measure and define campaign success.

Here are three major considerations for CMOs who are just beginning to consider the potential of attention metrics, and what they could mean for the future of targeted marketing.


1. The Evolution of Metrics: Beyond Clicks 

Valuable reporting has never been more important in digital marketing.

 Moving from clicks to attention-based metrics

 Clicks and impressions, in comparison to attention, are fast becoming a more ambiguous way of knowing how a marketing campaign has performed. Clients are seeking to understand their audiences’ relationship with the ads they serve, and what that can reveal in terms of the value CMOs can build into the overall user journey and what ads were seen and interacted with by the audience.

Information is readily available twenty-four-seven so consumer attention spans have grown shorter. People are accustomed to quick, consumable content. This means the window marketers have in which to attract the attention of their key demographic is smaller than ever – it literally comes down to a matter of seconds. From there, it’s about holding their focus long enough to get the intended message across before they are tempted to scroll past or click out. To do that, you must cut through the noise of the hundreds of competing ads occupying all the same channels as you.

With that in mind, attention has become something of a commodity. Once you have it, you can begin to measure it, and therein lies a high-value opportunity to tailor and tweak content so that it speaks directly to browsing behaviours as well as interests and needs.


2. Considerations for moving towards Attention-Based Measurement

The complexity of measuring attention

What happens once you have the user’s attention? Attention itself is a spectrum. People pay attention in a myriad of different ways. For example, is it better to attract your target audience visually, or audibly? When is their peak time for content consumption? The list goes on.

Measuring attention is a complex undertaking. There are a vast number of variables when it comes to the “how” of it all. The trick is to narrow them down to the ones that “shift the dials” in the right direction – i.e., those that inspire the audience to engage, interact, and ultimately, respond.

A few examples of this might include (but are not limited to):

  • Interaction time – how long has the user spent with the content?
  • Eye tracking – where does the user’s gaze wander, and when?
  • Pausing – did the user stop scrolling while your content was on screen?
  • Cursor placement – did the user’s cursor wander into the frame of the ad?
  • Times of day – when does the user most frequently pay attention to your content?


Uncertainty of attention's impact

The media industry has only scratched the surface when it comes to tracking attention. As with anything new, there is a certain degree of uncertainty and we must stay abreast of new technologies to ensure our clients are keeping abreast of newer technologies.

The power of creativity and human connection

Our creatives are always working tirelessly to incorporate what matters the most to the audience into every facet of their work. A few passing seconds is all you have in which to pull on the heartstrings of an audience, so it must count. The exciting thing about attention metrics is that they will reveal so much more than we know now about how to do just that – to create lightning-speed, attention-grabbing ads that build deep, meaningful, and lasting connections with people.


3. Leveraging Data and Unconventional Sources

Harnessing the power of data

Mining data for insight is not a new idea. What is new, is the desire to dive to a deeper level of audience understanding. Innovation in this space is staggering - and it’s gaining momentum.

Universal analytics is now a thing of the past, with third party cookies soon to follow. Since GDPR guidelines were put in place, the collection of data is not as simple; but it does mean that data is more meaningful, because people are only opting for personalised and tailored experiences.

The future is now...

Thanks to the global pandemic, the future arrived unfashionably early. However, now it's here and the digital revolution prioritising the consumer is in full swing, perfecting the user experience, i.e., user-friendliness, speed, clarity, and service are now essential to winning and retaining business. The only way to enhance it, is to understand its subtle nuances. Twogether is here to help you do just that.

Albert Einstein once said that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.

When the market changes, so too should your approaches to marketing – what got us here won’t get us there, so to speak. Attention metrics mark a new era of insight that will birth a plethora of innovative and inspiring methods of marketing. What’s exciting is, it’s only just beginning – and everyone at Twogether is here for it.

If you'd like to speak to us about how to best leverage your data, get in touch