Don’t Let an Obsession with CTR Kill Your Brand

We were once again reading an article that other day that discussed the importance of securing the best possible click-through-rate on advertisements, and it made us laugh.  Are we saying that CTR doesn’t matter?  No.  It’s a great metric to consider when determining the effectiveness of your advertising campaign.  But, it is not the be-all-end-all that some marketers consider it to be. We understand the obsession.  After all, social advertising, for quite some time, has been priced per click, and therefore, many began to believe that all of the value was in the clicking of the link.  However, there is much more to the equation than CTR alone.

The CTR metric really doesn’t tell you that much, if you think about it.  It gives you a clear picture of how many clicks the ad got, but not necessarily who clicked, when, and why.  How often have you accidentally clicked on an ad?  It happens and that click counts in the CTR metric.  There are also bots that produce clicks.  Those fraudulent clicks count too.  We’re fairly certain that neither the bot nor the person who accidentally clicked the link will fail to produce a sale.

When you are left without any insight into who the clicker was, you can’t really determine how successful the ad was.  You must rely on other metrics, and you must understand where the value lies. If the entire goal was to produce sales revenue, then obviously, you will be tracking the number of sales, and hopefully how the buyers found your product.  However, it is also important to consider how advertising can improve brand awareness.

CTR doesn’t give any indication of how people are perceiving your brand, how many people are seeing it and how often.  All of those things matter.  Building brand awareness is essential, because if people feel good about the brand, they will be willing to try it, to pay more for it, and to return for more.


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