Newspaper Ad-Tracking Programs Or On the net Ad-Tracking Programs
As a result of the Internet, differentiation between media companies is blurring. Newspaper photographers now shoot video because of their websites. Broadcast companies offer classified ads on the sites. Bloggers report local news, and news reporters blog.
However, as it pertains to advertising on these different media, the available technologies still cater specifically to just one medium. Newspaper software differs from television software which differs from radio software which differs from online software. Because I’m most familiar with newspaper software and online software, I’m going to target on the difference between those two.
Newspaper business systems (e.g. AdPro, Mediaspan, SCS) make reference to themselves as ad-tracking software. Although they’re correct insofar while they keep an eye on the booking, pricing, sizing and billing of ads, they don’t track the effectiveness of the ads. That’s an important difference from online ad-tracking systems. naija news Another major distinction is print publishers are the people investing in and managing the newspaper software, whereas online publishers piggyback on someone else’s software, usually free to them.
Although business software is the most complex software used by newspapers, here’s a straightforward example of how it works. Once a newspaper gets something up and running (which takes a lot of customization, training and money, by the way), the device knows the rates and ad sizes for several publications offered by that newspaper. Someone at the newspaper then enters an insertion order into the system. For example, let’s assume the ad is a 4X5 ad (four columns by five inches tall) that costs $20 a column inch. The ad-entry person finds the advertiser within their system, enters a fresh 4X5 ad for them, the device prices it at $400 ($20 X 20 inches), and saves it. Unlike online ad-tracking systems used by publishers through affiliate networks, newspapers control what they charge for ads running through their system.
Because the company system contains an accounts-receivable system, it’ll either place the ad on hold if the advertiser doesn’t have sufficient credit, or approve it. The ad-entry person may also enter a payment for that advertiser and apply it to the ad. The device allows newspapers to distribute a regular bill to the advertiser showing all the ads that ran and the full total due. When the advertiser remits payment, an accounting person will enter that payment into the device and apply it to the right ads or invoices.
Some business systems also have modules for managing the actual creatives (the ads themselves), in addition to keeping track of the orders for online ads. But they usually don’t manage the uploading of those ads, or tracking the client responses to those ads. That’s where online ad-tracking systems come in.
Online publishers who want to place ads on the sites often use affiliate networks to handle the ad tracking for them. Networks can either be open networks or exchanges (e.g. Commission Junction or Share A Sale), where in actuality the publishers are responsible for choosing which advertising campaigns they wish to run, or they can be closed networks (e.g. AvantLink or Affiliate Traction) where in actuality the networks manage the campaigns for the advertisers.
Whichever kind of network the publishers join, they will use that network’s ad-tracking software. Each network uses either an ad-tracking system they built in-house, or even a commercial tracking system (e.g. Direct Track or LinkTrust). The networks allow publishers to log within their tracking system. If your publisher joins multiple networks, the publisher can have access to any or all the systems used by those networks.
Once logged in, publishers grab the HTML code for whatever ad campaigns they opt to run. When they paste that code within their websites, the code refers back to the tracking software to pull in the creative for the ad, direct users to the advertiser’s landing page when clicked, and track the impression, click and ultimate lead or sale.
The publishers are also able to see the stats from the campaigns they run so they can see how many impressions, clicks, sales and-most important-the commission they expect to get as a result of running that campaign. Unlike newspaper software where only the newspaper has usage of the device, both publishers and advertisers have usage of online tracking systems so that they both discover how successful the campaigns are. Online tracking systems also change from newspaper systems for the reason that the advertisers are those who dictate what the price of the campaign is going to be, and the actual payout isn’t known until following the campaign has been running. With newspaper ads, an advertiser knows exactly what the ad will cost ahead of the ad runs. With online tracking systems, although the advertiser and publisher have a notion of what the fee for each lead or sale might be, the full total cost is determined by how a ad actually performs. That’s why affiliate marketing can be referred to as performance marketing.
Online tracking systems execute a decent job of tracking ad performance (unfortunately you will find still methods to defraud the systems, but that’s another topic), and they are able to tell you what the payout should be. But that’s where they stop. Unlike newspaper business systems which have robust accounts-receivable features, online systems don’t handle billing, receivables, etc. They expect you to export that data (or enter it manually) into Quickbooks.