There is a great anecdote in Kevin Hillstrom’s blog about Eddie Bauer making a major change to their creative that cost $60M in revenue and $15M in profit annually. Perhaps most incredibly, the creative and brand teams responsible were dead set on the new approach even in the face of terrible results.
And this disconnect between creative vision and financial performance is where Asset Performance reports solve a major problem. Corporate creatives are not artists (and last we checked, even Picasso needed to sell the occasional painting to make a living). Their creativity is intended to facilitate sales. And Asset Performance reports measure the effectiveness of this goal.
It’s worth noting that Asset Performance reports do not have to be connected to a DAM. In fact, assets must go beyond the DAM in order to be measured for customer response. That measurement should ideally be a closed-loop metric such as directly attributable sales, but intermediate digital metrics like click through rate (CTR) are better than nothing. Even offline metrics such as in-store sales of promoted items can be incorporated into Asset Performance reports, and with other data points help uncover true performance of an asset.
But there are two key benefits of delivering Asset Performance reports in the DAM:
Reporting within the DAM naturally focuses on the performance of creative without extrinsic marketing factors. Outside of a DAM context, analytics and marketing teams have the ability to run experiments on audience, price, promotion, cross-sell, up-sell, time of day, season, source of traffic, and level of engagement. The creative itself can get lost in a mess of multivariate regressions.
Embedding asset-related performance information within the DAM provides that information at exactly the right time and right place to influence the creative decision making. As creative and marketing team members search existing assets for use within their project, past performance data are exactly the information required to make good choices. On the other hand, burying this information in a weekly or monthly report all but guarantees that it will have no impact on future asset selection.
While the information provided by Asset Performance reports is just as critical as that provided by other reports, the questions answered all boil down to one basic idea:
Of course, that single question leads to a lot of follow ups: Close Up or Lifestyle? Men or Women? Individuals or Groups? Couples or Families? Younger or Older? A good Asset Performance report will provide quantitative advice for each of these decisions.
And even an initial phase of DAM implementation can track campaign IDs where an asset is deployed. Although it may be years before Asset Performance reports are developed, if a historical record of campaign performance is available, the campaign ID can be used to import past performance information and start the Asset Performance report with the data.