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Our 6 Takeaways from Lead-to-Cash Bash that Challenge Publisher Notions

The Walt Disney Dolphin Resort opened its doors for Indigo Trigger’s Lead-to-Cash Bash and SEBPO’s CRO, Todd Handy. This two-day SEBPO-sponsored event centered around niche Lead-to-Cash software and strategy success stories. From CRMs to Order Management to Finance Ops, this event dove into the tools and models that drive these ecosystems within some of the world’s largest media companies. 

With conference rooms full of executives, sales professionals, production and ad fulfillment experts, and more, there was no shortage of enlightenment and powerful takeaways from each panel and speaker for publishers within the industry. Todd Handy said goodbye to the warm Orlando weather on Friday, November 18th, and headed back into the Utah winter with some strong insights to share. 

Our 6 Takeaways from Lead-to-Cash Bash that Challenge Publisher Notions

1. Operations Leaders and Processes

Ops leaders need to develop process maps, document processes, provide training for both their teams and Sales teams and, in turn, hold each other accountable to follow said processes.

2. Sales Leaders and Tech Stacks 

It is critical for Sales leaders to get their arms around their sales tech stack — CRMs, order entry, proposal systems, gamification, sales reports, dashboards, etc. — and look for the vital few KPIs that will make a difference in managing and motivating their teams, as well as delivering results.

3. 1P Data and 3P Cookie 

First-Party Data is more critical than ever, especially with the oft-delayed impending ‘death’ of the Third-Party Data cookie. With publishers facing the loss of their data to platforms like Facebook and Twitter, they now know very little about their users. Because of this and the impending death of the cookie by Google, it is becoming increasingly difficult for publishers to target ads. As this new revelation has come to light, there has been plenty of discussion back and forth within the industry about what this all means. On one hand, this lack of data and, therefore, the inability to create targeted ads means all untargeted ads will become spam instead of reaching an audience. However, other experts in the industry argue that this conclusion isn’t entirely accurate since top funnel branding — the concept of targeting a wide audience to capture as many leads as possible — would no longer be relevant. In reality, top funnel branding does not need to be targeted; it can be for anyone. 

Although these ideas are still in debate, publishers should take into account the useful questions posed at the panel, one of which being ‘ what is the value exchange you, as a publisher, provide for your audience to not only earn their trust but also give them a reason to share their data with you?’.

4. Publishers and Inventory

Publishers need to think differently about their inventory and how they value it. Oftentimes, publishers use their inventory for barter rather than selling their ad impressions at the highest rate possible. However, this is not the most effective method for valuing inventory. Trading/bartering inventory or using it to pay down expenses is inherently devaluing it because when publishers do this, they, in turn, accept low effective rates. Instead, publishers should sell it programmatically for higher rates to take control of their inventory. By doing so, they can then build up branded content and end up getting much more value out of that same inventory. Additionally, Publishers should also consider working with partners who can take media inventory as an investment and provide equity in startups in return. There are also partners that will pay rate card CPMs for cost-per-acquisition type results, such as a retail solar energy company. 

This session not only challenged Publisher notions but also raised more questions for publishers to keep in mind: is this the best use of your inventory? What are you using it for? Expense reduction? Revenue generation? Hard to obtain assets that can be reused for advertisers and employees?

5. Screens and Screens and Screens

Screens, screens, screens — PCs, laptops, tablets, phones, watches, TVs, etc. Plenty of publishers out there are wholly extending their reach and inventory into an entirely different medium and looking for partners to help them get there while also using technology with some interesting applications. 

Today, there are a great deal of screens that audiences are accessible on, with more being added all the time. From gas stations to grocery stores, publishers need to think differently about where they can reach their intended audiences. Additionally, these new screens are utilizing anonymized facial and positional recognition to show audience, engagement, etc. It’s no longer just laptops, phones, and tablets. Audiences are more fragmented now than ever, so publishers need to be mindful of all the channels available for their audiences. 

6. Hiring and the Present Day

Hiring these days is not easy. Applicants don’t want to read job descriptions. They want to hear the story of what they’re going to do, how it makes an impact, what it will do for them, etc. Therefore, when hiring, Publishers need to help them get a feel of what they’ll be doing, and who your company is.

How We Can Help

Each of the abovementioned topics can help publishers handle the constant disruptive trends they face, and Todd urges them to dive deeper into these takeaways, so publishers can adapt with the changing industry. 

If you are interested in learning more about these important event takeaways or need assistance adjusting to new processes, SEBPO is here to help. We are highly-trained experts who are exceptionally familiar with the advertising space and Publishers’ challenges. Our platform-agnostic teams leverage industry best practices to tailor services that meet publisher-specific needs and provide unparalleled process governance to ensure success. Visit our website to shoot our team a quick message or read more about our services.

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