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The Stats Of Being An Asshole = Increasing ROI

The future of digital advertising relies on story telling to get the message across. We live in an age where the term “turning heads” has now translated into “stop thumbs”. That is why it is imperative that digital advertisers start telling in order to keep selling.

In a recent infographic published by Adweek, the importance of a creative advertisement is vital for boosting sales and increasing revenue.

Knowing the artist behind the painting increases value:

The graph states that there is an 11% increase in value if the publisher includes a story about the piece.

Stories about the creator give off a more personal interaction with the product, which can lead to a 5% increase in sales and a 6% markup in value.

The format of creative doesn’t need to involve personal development, either. The advertisement can simply reach out to individuals on a deeper spectrum.

One of the most effective ads of 2016 came in the form of a non-profit organization, Donate Life.

The ad features “The Worlds Biggest Asshole” starring Thomas Jane. In it, a man who abides by his own obscure sense of morality goes through his day to day being an “asshole” to everyone in front of him.

Peeing in a bottle and throwing it out the window of his bumper sticker-ridden pick-up truck, stealing women’s underwear, and throwing change at a stripper are all in a day’s work for the biggest asshole, but there’s a catch.

He’s an organ donor.

He passes away and his organs are donated to people who have an actual purpose. His liver goes to a family man, his heart – a teacher, and his tendons to a member of the armed forces.

The creative pushed boundaries that any other organization would frown upon. Using risky and shunned upon antics instead of the traditional, lighthearted approach.

The ad worked effectively:

Registrations increased from 149 to 1,022 a day.

Sign-ups among millennials shot up 127 percent.

You can be a better person in death than you were in life. Your advertisement can be more effective with an excellent creative.

Check out the ad:

Jeff Greenfield = Measuring Data Effectively

Data doesn’t need to be dressed up in Prada on a Madison Avenue billboard. Data is real. As a matter of fact, data is the reason that billboard got made in the first place. The creators of that advertisement used data collected over years of practice to fully implement an effective ad strategy that would convince you to buy that dress, or that wrist watch, or that TV that makes you feel slightly superior than your neighbor.

Data doesn’t make the world go around. Data lets you know the world is round. It provides the required paths that lead to discovering truth.

Jeff Greenfield, our very own COO of C3 Metrics sat down with Rich Brooks – creator of the Agents Of Change podcast to discuss why C3 Metrics provides the most effective data when it comes to advertising.

Jeff:  Well the biggest problem with analytics is that most people don’t understand where the holes are. You’re never going to have a perfect answer – especially when it comes to marketing and advertising – the reality is that until we have a machine that can hook up to someone’s brain and discern exactly which touchpoints and which brand images actually have them make a decision to buy from us or engage further with us, that’s perfection and we don’t have that. So anything else we should step back and understand that anything else we have is just wrong. The questions is how wrong is it and how far away is Google Analytics, or how far away is any analytics from the actual truth.

Why trust someone that thinks they know how to reach an audience when you have the data that can give you the real answers?

Check out the full interview.

Programmatic Drugloards = Clickbait (Columbian Detour)

Many college students cannot afford the luxuries of watching their favorite football teams. If you were born in Oakland and grew up watching your beloved Raiders, chances are you’re missing out at the University of New Hampshire.

Location sometimes dictates what you watch. Unfortunately, that rings the loudest with football. With many college students far from home, interesting methods have been brought to the table in order for many to watch their favorite team.

Various “free streaming” sites have been popping up, luring the unaware.

The method:

Attract people to their site, get them to disable Adblock, and then have the video playing behind an ad that you can’t click out of. This gives advertisers the ability to consider the click through rate of the site.

With most sites bypassing legalities by streaming from a separate site, it’s that second site that indeed infringes on the copyright laws. The trick around that is to only show 40% of the video. How do they do this? They place an unclickable ad right in front of everything.

Going through the HTML, I was able to locate most of the ads and disable them. Unfortunately, that ad that appears to be in the way is actually part of the flash plugin. Bypassing any of the legal issues that might come from constantly streaming sports.

The whole concept is meant to drive traffic to the site. Users can spend an unlimited amount of time trying to disable the ad.

After going through the HTML, everything was clear. This was a “Columbian detour”.

Put up fake detours on the road to redirect people unfamiliar with the area, once you’re there the setup for the robbery can begin.

Essentially they detour the viewer to a separate site and give them what they can legally, but not what the person wanted. They’re essentially “baiting clicks”.

Be careful of the detours you take, you could end up in a full-scale robbery.

Stories = How Advertisers Are Generating ROI

New methods have evolved since the days of traditional advertising. The data is here to effectively construct better plans in order to reach a specific goal.

With our attentions span being slightly longer than the standard goldfish, advertisers are looking for ways to use a 30-second ad in order to tell stories…and it’s working.

30-second ads are now being used to tell stories. The methods are used to create a feeling within someone in order to present a new outlook on a certain topic.

This ad, created by REI is a teaser for a longer, 2-minute video that invokes a sense of unity within the outdoor community.

The 2:35 spot:

Similarly, Proctor and Gamble released a video during the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio detailing some of the world’s top competitors dealing with events in their life that would be seen as frightening. The catch, each one of these athletes had a hand to guide them through it – their mother’s.

With digital advertising now moving towards storytelling, the prospect of more emotion driven content has become a key focal point for upcoming concepts.

70% Of TV Advertising’s Impact Is Due To Creative.

A showdown between two wireless providers, Sprint and Verizon has come head to head over who could utilize creative more effectively.

With Verizon holding the chalice for one of the most iconic advertisements of the 21st century, Sprint has had to fire back.

The “Can you hear me now” guy was the staple for cellular phones back in 2002. The advertisement reached every consumer who had a television, was parodied harder than “Wazzzuuuuuuup” from Scary Movie, and relied on the same, albeit plain character for every ad.

The “Can you hear me now” advertisement is a staple in advertising. Aside from cereal box mascots, who’s entire advertising plan is to create a colorful, effective and creative character for children, companies have relied on the idea of a well thought out creative that will have the ability to be recycled and relied on for other forms of media.

With having what appears to be a regular guy standing in the woods, on a volcano, or in space with constant cellphone service, the creative was able to maintain it’s ability to come up with something fresh, and ridiculous all while remaining redundant to the point that everyone knew the advertisement as well as the brand it represented.

Well, the tables have turned. In June, Paul the “Can you hear me now guy”, switched over to another wireless provider. With the rights now in the hands of Sprint, the advertisement came as a shock to the world when it was first announced during Game 2 of the NBA finals. Reaching out to approximately 17 million viewers, this created a controversy. The idea of having this iconic symbol of Verizon, now switching teams, got the public in a stir. Some would say this is a slight middle finger to the competitors and rightfully so.

For those that did not initially see the ad when it first aired, they quickly jumped to Youtube where they could replay the ad in all its glory and stare in complete awe as the mascot they grew up with, now stirred up the cell-phone business (as controversial and mind-blowing as it already was).

See, Sprint never really had the iconic advertisements that sunk into the livelihood of people. Verizon did, and what better way to cause massive traffic for advertising hub-spots than to straight up steal the iconic character for yourself, rebrand it, and scream at the world “Look at me now.”

With the ability to monitor advertisements more effectively than ever due to digital, there has become a paradigm shift as to what makes an effective advertisement. The idea has gone from traditional, to more creative. The more creative and influential an advertisement can be,  the more traffic and impressions you will be able to see. In the case of the Paul, the reaction boasted over 13-million impressions on Sprint’s Youtube channel.

According to a report from the Council for Research Excellence:

“The modeling world has moved beyond the simple multiple regression techniques of the early days. Modelers strive to understand tremendously complex media interactions and the models they use reflect this growing complexity. The use of vector auto regression, structural equation models, Bayesian networks and digital attribution models reflect the complexity of the ecosystem today. ”

The concept of advertising has moved away from simply having a billboard off of the highway. The creative needs to focus on gripping the viewer, stunning them with obscurity.  The shift has given advertisers further insight on the how and why advertisements are effective and puts the focus more on content and creativity.

Ted Moon = Attribution Is A Team Effort

Ted Moon, the Principle at Pathfinder, a Digital and Traditional Media and Marketing Consultancy/Agency, spoke with a very own Jeff Greenfield about how attribution is equaled to a team.

After witnessing the amazing comeback that Michael Phelps had achieved during Sunday night’s 4x 100-meter relay, a lightbulb went off.

“So, I’ve often compared attribution to various sports analogies. I think that he uses the relay race a lot. I use the different kinds of “flow sports”. You know, hockey, basketball, lacrosse, soccer. They’re real good analogies in explaining to clients successfully. 

An originator vs. an assist. 

Caeleb Dressel swam the first leg of the race and was behind. Michael Phelps came back from half a body length behind and switched it to half a body length ahead. That was massive. The other two swimmers, kept the pace to win the gold.

In last click attribution. His contribution would have been ignored. The win would have been attributed to the guy who won the race. Phelps would have received nothing

Michael Phelps actually turned that deficit into a lead. If we saw that, we would understand the importance of a guy like Michael Phelps. Media that functions that way plays a crucial role that we wouldn’t have seen if we were using Last Click attribution.

The analogy is so perfect.  The moment I saw that happening, I texted Jeff late at night. The contribution that Phelps had made. If you looked at the last swimmer in the race, you wouldn’t have given any credit to the person who really made a difference. “

Instagram Ads = Story Driven Content

Instagram, the mobile app that just recently reached the 500 million user mark, has given advertisers a new medium to promote themselves. This provides new methods and restructures the format of traditional advertisements.

With social media becoming increasingly more pivotal for advertising, companies have moved away from advertisement agencies and have made the switch to content creators. With the Millennial generation fully utilizing the potential of social media, digital content has moved away from the traditional sense to creating more story driven displays.


General Electric has been on top the game with utilizing social media. Their reach through Facebook messenger has created a symbiosis between consumers and the company by creating an active bot that will talk to users and interact with scientific questions. Now, they are jumping into the Instagram game by delivering paneled stories. These posts by GE tell a story of their adventures into a volcano to measure its activity.

Other companies have started campaigns. Redbull put out a few simple posts that have a large impact in terms of pairing their brand with “extreme sports”. The ads cater to the user. If you do cool and exciting sports and want to be featured in one of their ads, you can.


By utilizing this new method, users will get a glimpse at the new and unfamiliar ways that advertisements will catch our attention and stop our thumbs.

1800’s Instagram = How Ikea Reached 1 Million Views In 3 Days.

Instagram, it’s the app on your phone that you use to take pictures of your food. Or maybe you use it to send filtered images of the beach to your friends. Only your friends know, and the government…and advertisers, but other than that, nobody else really knows. Well, a new advertisement by the Swedish furniture company Ikea, asked the question:

“What would Instagram be like in the 1800’s?”

Well, they went ahead and answered that question with a video.

The video shows a family in the 17th century, getting ready to sit down and eat. The father, impressed by the meal, hires a painter to come in and illustrate the meal on a large canvas. As the family eagerly waits, the canvas is finished and passed around all the land receiving criticism until it reaches someone who appears to be of high importance. The person approves and the canvas makes it way back to the family where it receives a thumbs up. The family, after waiting forever to eat, can finally dig in.

The reason for this ad was to create something that would remind people of the togetherness of cooking, eating, and enjoying time with family. The end comments read “It’s a meal, not a competition”, shows that we should simply enjoy our food and not give thought to what other people think about in the trivial aspect of how we eat.

Listen, nobody cares about what you’re eating. It’s a fact. With the increasing amount of views this ad has received, many users feel the same. With over 1 million hits in 3 days, it appears that many others feel the same way.

Attribution = A Natural Process

You wouldn’t think that the evolution of technology is a natural process, but to tell you the truth, it is. If you take a look back to the 70’s, computers were the size of a room and could only tabulate data. Fast forward to today, the age of technology, where can do anything all from the palm of your hand.

Technology got to where it is today based on the natural process of evolution. We could do more with less. The technology we had even 10 years ago has long since been upgraded and refined to better suit the needs of its users.

The way you monitor the effectiveness of your ads should take the same natural process. If you’re using Last Click in 2016, you’re bringing a rock to a gun fight. At the time of Last Click’s creation, it was great. It worked because there weren’t many places to see an online advertisement. It was usually by word of mouth or actually clicking on the link to purchase something. Usually, the first click was also the last click , but that time has come and gone.

In the same way that every other piece of technology has become more effective, so have the methods to monitor it. With Last Click, the ability to monitor the effectiveness of your ads hasn’t changed since the dot-com boom. It’s been at least 16-years since that technology has come out. That is also 16-years too late. In the eye’s of evolution, that form of technology can’t keep up and will soon be doomed to phase out.

In the same way that advertisements have developed new ways to reach out to customers, C3 Metrics has developed a better way to monitor the effectiveness of your ad spend.

Think of it this way:

You’re with your friends in the middle of a forest. Each of you start wandering around and each step you take creates a path from the original source. Each time you stop and set up camp, you create a purchase. Last Click only tells you where the camp is, but with C3 Metrics, you get a full view of every step each person has taken.  This gives you the information to better plan where you can place your ads and who it can reach out to.

With C3 Metrics, you will be able to see which advertisements are making money and which ones aren’t. This walks hand-in-hand with the natural process of evolution. You have the ability to see where you can have more impact for less money.

Financial Fridays = Saving over $11 Million Dollars.

Boy, do we have a fun one today. We groomed through a real company’s digital ad spend, and found that

After taking a look at the data, we were able to calculate that this special company was blowing (XYZ$$$) dollars on their ad spend.

Upon our first look, we noticed that there was a significant amount of big, fat goose eggs. After a quick calculation, we were able to determine that 91% of this company’s ad spend wasn’t generating any ROI.

The nature of this product is such that it is a need based product service which only arises every 7 years. In order to shift demand from solely need to want, it requires a shift away from paid search into display, pre-roll and content.

When 91% of your ads aren’t receiving any ROI, you have to make cuts. Needless to say, we made some intense cuts.

Take a look at the data we pulled and see how we were able to save this company over 11 million dollars.

This is just the tip of the iceburg.

This is just the tip of the iceburg.

By using C3 Metrics, you have the ability to see which affiliates weren’t working. This company just got the harsh realization that they are spending way too much money. Over $11 million dollars to be exact. Still think Last Click works for you? Think again.