From babies to bots (b-to-b), anything can happen.
I love this video from Adobe. Advertisers continue to spend billions on clicks without truly understanding the source of resulting engagement. A renewed emphasis on data-driven marketing and the IAB Data Transparency Standards are helping, but anything can happen when man is disengaged from the machine.
What matters most is that advertising begins with clearly defined objectives. Many key performance indicators (KPI) are still being applied to campaign results without context or critique. The average cost-per-click (CPC) for a Programmatic B2B paid social ad campaign can range from $0.05 on Twitter to $5.00 on LinkedIn with similar audience targeting criteria and segmentation applied.
The problem doesn't necessarily go away when you optimize for conversions, especially for B2B marketing campaigns that are optimized for lead capture. How many vendors (supply-side) get lured to your landing pages, only to distract your new business development teams from what matters most -- generating revenue (demand-side).
For effective B2B marketing, it is important to remember three things (and not only these) before pulling the trigger on ad spend:
Be crystal clear on your objective and its value to the organization.
Address the right business audience with relevant value and unique insight.
If you are unable to truly validate the impact of campaign results on your objective, then don't jump to conclusions based on activity alone.
Qualitative review is more important than ever, so invest the time on understanding what is valuable and what is not. This applies to campaign planning, execution, measurement and beyond. Machines are here to serve their masters, so let's remember to keep them in line.