Digital marketing delivers powerful results for advertisers -- but running digital campaigns has become too complex. Google commissioned The Boston Consulting Group to better understand the potential to improve efficiency for marketers and create more value in digital campaigns.

Using “lean” methodology to map and measure the end-to-end process of 24 digital campaigns across 15 digital marketers in Europe, here’s a summary of what BCG found:

  • Campaign teams were spending on average only 1 day in 5 on ‘value-creation’ activities, with 80% of their time spent on low-value activities such as trafficking.
  • Using a unified ad technology stack (a combined solution from a single vendor) generates resource-productivity improvements on average of 12% and up to 33% across the campaign lifecycle.
  • Marketers realise further productivity gains by combining a single ad technology stack with wider organizational change -- which frees up talent for higher-value activities, such as strategy development, analysis and creativity.
  • These are still “early days,” and marketers achieved these gains with even an early version of the unified technology stack. Further gains are possible as technology continues to advance.
  • Increased efficiency means better performance. Marketers that re-invested efficiency gains into value-creating activities created an important competitive advantage in campaign performance.
  • It takes a pragmatic approach. Marketers should use a step-by-step lean approach to address pain points in processes, structure and technology.
  • It also takes an ecosystem. Advertisers, agencies, publishers and technology providers, working together, all have a role in cutting complexity and adding value to the overall industry.

We’re releasing the full report today.