5 Things You Didn't Know About BuzzFeed Advertising: Your Questions Answered

January 13, 2020 Anne Curtin

The digital publishing industry is more complex than ever. Constant shifts in the market are forcing publishers such as BuzzFeed to focus on more than just creating great content and delivering relevant audiences. They’re feeling pressure to prove their value and deliver measurable business results.

Advertisers are also under more pressure than ever to prove the business impact of their efforts. Every organization wants to understand what’s working and invest in the platforms that are driving the best outcomes for their business.

So it’s not surprising that our recent Adweek-sponsored webinar, 5 Things You Didn’t Know About BuzzFeed Advertising, was packed (virtually).

The webinar shared the findings from a BuzzFeed-commissioned marketing mix modeling study that showed how the platform’s campaigns are driving value and ROI for advertisers. 

During the webinar, we received many great questions for our presenters: Shari Cleary, SVP of Research, Insights & Brand Planning at BuzzFeed, Josh Peters, Director, Data Partnerships at BuzzFeed, and Matt Malone, Sr. Manager, Marketing Effectiveness at Nielsen.

Here are their responses to some of the questions they weren’t able to get to:

What was the biggest surprise learning that you gleaned from this study?
The biggest surprise was seeing how well BuzzFeed posts move products off the shelf.

What have you done with the data from the study?
Using the data from the study, we figured out better product mixes and even created some new products. It informed how we build plans.

Where in the marketing funnel does BuzzFeed fit?
We can work anywhere in the funnel – top, middle and bottom. With some of our bigger partners, we work full funnel with them throughout the year.

What methodology was used for measuring ROAS and driving product off the shelves? Does it differ for traditional TV vs BuzzFeed?
Nielsen utilizes a best in class marketing mix regression in order to correlate sales volume with media execution. The output, incremental volume, is transformed to revenue using a product-specific factor. Revenue divided by spend is how we deliver ROAS figures. The process is the same across all media types (TV and Buzzfeed).

How are you calculating effectiveness index?
First we calculate the incremental sales contribution percentage per execution metric. Then we normalize it to 100 for the effectiveness index.

To what extent were you able to include channels outside of BuzzFeed for the advertisers included in this study?
We included TV, radio, print, and other digital drivers in this analysis, along with in-store price and promotion.

Do you use "last touch " for optimization in your marketing mix models?
No. Since most of the conversions happen in brick and mortar stores, it's not possible to use multi-touch attribution or last-touch attribution. 

Are the clients who advertise on BuzzFeed only CPG? Or are there different clients who would be interested in advertising on BuzzFeed to reach mass audiences?
We work with some of the biggest advertisers in the world, as well as hundreds of mid-sized and smaller clients. Our client base covers everything from tech and auto, to beauty, entertainment and more.

Do you think that the results from this study can be roughly applied to other less commodity consumer goods categories?
Yes. Having done two studies to date, and seeing results far above norms each time gives us great confidence in the results in other categories.

When creating a data-driven attribution model (and moving away from last-click), what are the key first steps/ingredients for success?
The key to success is maximizing the efficiency of your campaign. Look at your budget and the options available and see where the best reach can be gained.

Learn More

Download a recording of our webinar: 5 Things You Didn’t Know About BuzzFeed Advertising

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