In its 2021 Annual Leadership Meeting, IAB focused on “The Great Reset.” It is an apt theme for the gathering of ad sales executives, given the tremendous upheaval and uncertainty that is pervasive across the ad ecosystem. In a follow-up event to that session, Accenture, IAB, and IAB members explored the key challenges facing the ad ecosystem and the strategies leaders are evaluating and implementing to navigate through this challenging time. This paper summarizes the discussions, highlighting the key insights provided by session participants.
Given the current advertising environment, the Accenture- and IAB-led session articulated eleven actions that ad sales leaders should do now. Read more details in the full report.
The 11 things ad sales leaders need to do now:
- Create a plan to analyze current non-authenticated users and model their behavioral and demographic profiles while cookies still exist.
- Establish ad-buyer trust in your measurement and reporting metrics. Look for established solutions or partnerships that might accelerate your capabilities.
- Layer trust into your customer experience by carefully considering your users’ needs and establishing the right messages, images and journey in your product.
- Build and prioritize a list of value exchanges you could have with your customers to ensure that they are receiving appealing return for authenticating with you.
Address sales workforce challenges
- Create a checklist for when in-person interactions with clients make sense given the adoption and ubiquity of virtual tools.
- Identify the surprising benefits of work-from-home interactions and incorporate them into your workforce experience.
- Review your training and upskilling program and ensure that it includes skills needed in today’s environment. Pay special attention to new skills needed due to virtual selling tools and emerging technologies.
- Evaluate the versatility of your team to work across dynamic segments and channels and create a cross-training program. Identify gaps in collaboration between teams and work to close them
Rethink sales tools
- Evaluate your data-driven insights across teams and identify new opportunities to leverage customer or product data to enhance interactions with buyers.
- Segment your buyers across multiple dimensions including category, size and behavior. Identify buying journeys for each segment and align them to high-touch and low-touch tools to ensure that each experience is right sized for the need.
- Build a list of emerging channels (e.g. audio) and formats (e.g. shoppable content) and identify the right approach to each for your company. Consider how you will stay ahead of your competition as these technologies mature.