As we move towards a cookieless world, ad agencies need to modify their services in order to survive. Learn how to future-proof your agency by providing tracking infrastructure to clients.
Is your ad agency still relying on third-party tracking? Well, what if I told you that corporations don’t care about your ad agency and may completely disable any third-party tracking soon?
You already know what Apple did in 2021, right? So, realistically, you should be prepared for a ‘cookieless’ world in which there is no tracking of customer activity—well, at least not so easily.
If you’re running an ad agency in 2022, and your priority is to optimize, manage, and automate first, and track later, then you may find yourself in dire straits. In short, tracking should be your number one priority.
In this article, I will walk you through the process of increasing the total efficiency of your advertising machine by 25%-70% per client. I’ll also show you how to increase client stickiness and get contracts renewed easily. All this by putting tracking first and choosing the right tool for it.
So, let’s discuss the 5 reasons why you should provide tracking infrastructure to your clients.
Reason #1: It will give you a competitive edge
In 2021, Apple dropped a bomb on all advertising agencies with its iOS 14.5 update. By giving users an option to turn off tracking, Apple almost put ad agencies out of business all of a sudden. In the coming months, some of the worst fears of agency owners became true when 88% of iOS Facebook users worldwide opted out of app tracking. And now, a significant percentage of the web conversions are invisible and not attributed in Ads Manager.
This is just the beginning. The world is slowly moving towards a cookieless future. Even though only Apple has taken the plunge so far, Android will follow suit in a little while. So, don’t be surprised if 100% of users opt out of tracking someday soon, and all your clients end contracts with your agency.
Being the founder of BirkAds agency, I’m one of you. But I’m already taking action to future-proof my agency. How? By not just relying on Facebook CAPI (Conversions API) and Google Analytics but setting up first-party cookie-based tracking infrastructure for clients. If you want to beat competitors, you’ve got to move from third-party to first-party cookies. Plus, it’s wisest for you, as an agency, if you offer it to clients as a service.
Reason #2: You could make your agency recession-proof
First, there was a pandemic, and now, there’s a war—the repercussions of recent events have put immense financial pressure on governments as well as businesses. In such circumstances, ad spend and agency retainers are the first ones to get cut. This means that end-to-end ad management service alone is a risky business strategy in an economic downturn. But there’s still hope, given that you reposition yourself as an integrator instead of an advisor. An agency that handles tracking implementation is far more valuable in this day and age.
To justify ad spend and agency retainers to the client, your priority should be to track first, then optimize, manage, and automate later. By doing so, you will be able to report ad performance more accurately and, in return, request more budgets and, thus, more commission.
To clarify this further, let’s take a look at things from a client’s perspective. The fact is that clients are gradually losing trust in Meta ads due to a lack of visibility into their true impact. They’re losing their peace of mind because of inadequate data in Ads Manager, which is also holding them back from reallocating their budget to Facebook ads.
By being a tracking service provider, you’ll enable your clients to find a narrowed-down, precise target audience and accurately measure the number of conversions from Facebook ads. With more data inside the ad account, the true impact of your hard work will be reported in Ads Manager. And this, of course, will make the client more dependent on your agency because they most likely cannot handle such a sophisticated level of tracking on their own.
Reason #3: You’ll get a massive productivity boost
If you run an agency that gets a percentage of ad spend from clients, you should always strive to keep the spend as high as possible. Not only will this help the client get more conversions, but it’ll also keep your revenue high. However, a shorter attribution window and missing data could result in clients decreasing their ad spend. After all, business is business.
But if you integrate a proper tracking infrastructure for the client, their faith in Facebook ads will remain intact, and they will be more comfortable increasing their ad spend. On the other hand, if you only rely on third-party tracking infrastructure, the result will be underreporting, which will surely frustrate clients and make them question your agency’s relevance and value.
Now, even if you manage to tackle underreporting by using multiple data sources, you’ll end up spending hours compiling all the data from numerous sources. Imagine this: It’s the end of the month, and you’re stitching together numbers from various sources to make up for the loophole created by iOS 14. You know, by combining data manually from, say, Google Analytics and Facebook Ads Manager and putting it all together in Google Sheets. By doing this, you’ll not only waste a lot of time but there are also chances for error.
But what if you could put this soul-sucking end-of-the-month reporting on autopilot? The good news is—it can be done. With Madgicx’s Cloud Tracking solution, you can. More on that later.
Reason #4: You’ll be able to wow your prospects
Instead of focusing your agency's audit on creative, targeting, budget, Facebook Business Manager setup, or funnel strategy, you should start it with event tracking. Keeping the current state of affairs in mind, in which a significant percentage of the conversions are not visible and not attributed in the Ads Manager, imagine what would happen if your account audit would start by showing a client their actual ROI from FB Ads. They’d just love it.
In a world where more than half of the data is not even tracked, showing clients their actual ROAS from Facebook ads, CPA, etc., would be priceless. Not exaggerating, but this is account auditing on steroids. And how will this benefit you? Well, first, when you have the full picture in front of you, you will be in a position to point out inefficiencies with confidence. When you know the exact return on investment and the factors contributing to it, you can create a strategy to maximize ROI.
Remember, when you have the full picture through tracking, you can move on to classical elements of an ad account audit like design, target audience, or funnels. You shouldn’t do it the other way round. Also, from a sales perspective, if the audit itself wows the clients, they’d be more likely to sign a retainer contract with you. On the flip side, if you screw up the audit because of a lack of data and by focusing too much on lesser important aspects, you may lose the client.
Reason #5: Your clients could bring you more clients
After you have incorporated tracking infrastructure services into your offering, boosted your team’s productivity, and shortened the sales cycle to close news clients, something magical will happen. Your clients will fall in love with the results and share their stories with other potential clients. Let’s dig a little deeper.
A proper tracking infrastructure has a compound effect on your client’s efficiency, and benefits go way beyond just accurate tracking. So, if you bring a 20% lift to your client from having accurate ROI tracking, you could gain another 10%-20% lift from better budget allocation and scaling decisions and another 10%-30% easily by getting back the breakdown data and eliminating wasted budgets on underperforming ages, genders, locations, and devices. This compound effect will improve the total efficiency of your “advertising machine'' by 25%-70%.
But where exactly will this uplift come from? Well, better targeting means more data for larger retargeting audiences and, consequently, more accurate LALs. Also, with better optimization, the Facebook algorithm can more efficiently meet your optimization goals since it gets more signals back and, consequently, learns faster. And finally, you will be able to stop audience cannibalization. This would be really advantageous because less data makes it harder to exclude audiences who need to be excluded.
Apart from all these benefits, you’ll also save yourself from massive underreporting. So, not only can you impress your client with the audit, but you may also be able to turn them into your advocate by telling their success stories to others.
I hope that now you understand what truly matters when it comes to keeping your ad agency running. Simply put, your agency should track first, then optimize, manage, and automate later. Although we’re moving towards a ‘cookieless’ world, it doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s the end of tracking and data collection.
There are many ways to do this, and most of them require heavy coding/scripts on the website. One way would be to hire developers with expertise in all three tracking domains: pixel, CAPI, and offline conversions. Those developers are hard to find and charge a decent dime.
Alternatively, you could implement Madgicx Cloud Tracking and instantly get a 20% increase in tracked ad ROI. No more losing money to inaccurate data because Madgicx offers an accurate first-party tracking setup along with offline conversions and deduplication. This solution requires no coding on your agency's end.
If that sounds interesting to you, you can learn more about it right here.
Following his passion for outdoor adventures, Madis founded BirkAds - the only agency in Europe that specializes in Optimizing Ads ROI for the Outdoor Industry. He has audited over 3,000 campaigns, conducted over 672 hours of coaching sessions, and managed ads for more than 70 companies worldwide.