How Creative Scoring Gives Your Advertising a Competitive Edge

By : Jeff Filiberto


I took this job because I was sick and tired of seeing too many marketers ice skate on the highway.  Or rather, trying to ice skate on the highway. 

There they were, marketers, pushing along painfully on the rock-hard asphalt, moving horribly slowly, causing all kinds of issues.  Marketers, making terrible sounds as their skates scraped, scratched and sparked along the hard blacktop while they tried with all their might to zoom down the road, only to find they were getting nowhere, fast.  Fellow commuters in cars whizzing on by.  It was a painful sight to see.  Too many marketers, putting themselves and others in danger, investing way too much time, energy, effort, and money into what should have been a relatively simple commute to work.  And all along, I stood watching, knowing the right mode of transportation could have saved a lot of people a lot of heartache. 

Metaphor alert! That’s right, ice skates on the highway are a metaphor. I know, real surprise! Far too many digital ads are ice skates on a highway.  They’re perfect for the original terrain which they were made: ice skates are great on ice and television ads are perfect for TV.  But they’re disastrous and radical wastes of people’s time, money and energy when applied to the wrong medium–as with running ads on digital that weren’t built for digital.

Just like cars are far better than ice skates on a highway, ads that are specifically built for Facebook, incorporating Facebook’s best practices, running on Facebook–make for a far more exponentially smoother, successful trip. What is equally as vexing as seeing marketers run TV ads on Facebook is just as many marketers are making the mistake of running ads made for Facebook on other social platforms. This is like marketers, after finally being relieved of their ice skates on the highway, having enjoyed successful commutes down the expressway in new cars, then taking those cars and driving them directly into the river.  Figuring if it works well on the highway, I might as well use this thing to cross a body of water.  When will marketers learn?  A mode of transportation should not be used on terrain for which it wasn’t designed. But if we give those same marketers boats–again nothing too fancy–a simple canoe or rowboat built for travel on water, they float right along towards their destination. Trying to drive a car on a river is like a marketer taking those very same ads that were built for Facebook and running them on YouTube, Pinterest or TikTok. You’ll drown. You’re wasting the time, energy, and money of your team, company, investors and shareholders. The worst part is it’s just not necessary.

There’s technology now available–easy to use AI, that can instantly run a diagnostic on an ad prior to it being trafficked, which will answer questions for marketers: Is this ad fit for Facebook?  Is this ad fit for TikTok?  Does it meet the basic best practices of the platform on which I intend it to run?  Is it the right length?  Is the brand logo showing up where it should?  Are humans showing up as they should be?  Is the Call To Action showing up as it should?  Etc. Today, this is a wildly fast, easy, automated step for a marketer’s team or agency to take to ensure they don’t ice skate on the highway. VidMob’s pre-flight Creative Scoring ensures such a ridiculous practice never happens again.  Further, if an ad doesn’t meet any of the basic best practice criteria for a particular platform, VidMob’s on-demand network of expert creatives can fix an ad within days to meet those basic best practices, while still maintaining the ad’s strategic and emotional integrity. Creative Scoring is the equivalent of making sure you’re using a mode of transportation that has the basics before going out on a highway: wheels, brakes, steering, etc. It would be insane to take to the road without them.

For too many reasons, too many marketers are running ads without meeting the minimum basic criteria. Often they and their teams don’t know the best practices for each platform. And who can blame them? The number of platforms and formats is growing and evolving every day. The average person has 8.4 different social media accounts, on separate platforms, and within those platforms there are several ever-changing ad formats.  Many marketers are unaware such automated Pre-Flight Creative Scoring technology exists–to ensure ads are meeting best practices. Often worse, many marketers are simply mired in the status quo. They’re just making ads the way they’ve always made them.  Unfortunately, the world is passing them by.  Ads today need to be in tune with the world in which they are being run.

These days, pre-flight Creative Scoring is the ante. The cost of entry – and it doesn’t cost much at all.  It’s too easy and too helpful to ignore.  Further, there are tools available now that go beyond simply ensuring you’re not lacing up ice skates to travel the highway or not driving a car into the river.  This alone should not be the standard to which a marketer holds themself.  There are very easy-to-use tools and services that leverage today’s readily available technology and data to ensure you have the best, most finely tuned vehicle available for a particular trip, terrain time of year that meet all your specific goals for making that trip.  Achieving the best possible outcome should be every marketer’s objective, rather than settling for simply floating along.

The best example of this is in motorsports, where teams leverage technology and data to achieve peak effectiveness and efficiency.  Like a good marketer, their goal is to achieve the best possible outcome.  Telemetry is the art and science of rigging a car with sensors to generate data that helps motorsports teams understand all aspects of how a vehicle runs on a particular track.   Formula One, NASCAR, and IndyCar teams all use such data and information–relative to the speed, suspension, directional forces, steering, braking, throttle, tire and track temperature, and more–to develop a specific car set-up to achieve the best possible outcome for a given race.   A team wouldn’t dream of running a race without tapping into such readily available data to set up a car. Today, a one-hour race can generate over 8-million points of data via more than 100 sensors in a car.  This is far more information than humans alone could generate, synthesize, and analyze.  Teams use technology to simplify the  process.  Data scientists and engineers work together to implement the learnings that technology makes readily available and easy-to-interpret.  Effectively using this information is often the difference between winning and losing a race, and especially a championship.  Advertising is no different.  Creative is widely agreed to be the most important driver of campaign effectiveness. 

Today, AI, computer vision, and machine learning have opened the door to real-time Creative Analytics.  Just like telemetry on a race car, it’s now possible for marketers to easily understand the impact of every creative element or decision on an ad. Just like it’s critical to tune a race car’s suspension, tire pressure or steering setup for a specific terrain, race and track, understanding the optimal use of a brand logo, product, package, human, or call to action for a particular ad placement, objective and KPI is the difference between a winning, high-performing campaign and one that simply sputters along.

VidMob’s platform for Intelligent Creative and strategic service teams enable marketers to arm brilliant human creative teams with the best creative insights that today’s technology and data will allow.  The results are astounding, often 2-5x increase in KPI’s.  Further, the efficiencies and speed in developing creative by leveraging the best that technology offers–from workflow and collaboration solutions to a trained, expert network of professional creatives–are tremendous.  It’s like giving a race car driver the best that technology and data will allow.

Implementing simple Creative Scoring, Creative Analytics, and tapping the talent in our Creative Network to inform ads with those learnings is the difference between racing a car to a championship… and ice-skating on the highway.