June 15, 2021 · Phil Foriska

How To Analyze The Performance Of Display Demand Generation

Display Demand Generation

  • The importance of upper-funnel, demand generation campaigns can not be overlooked. This is the Hunter Hotelier strategy. 
  • We recommend that our clients not only capitalize on prospective guests that are actively looking for their property but also create the demand that gets those searchers into the funnel. 
  • Display ads can be shown on both hotel-specific platforms (OTAs & Travel Sites) and non-hotel-specific platforms (Airline websites, GPS Navigation apps, Social Platforms (Facebook, Pinterest, etc.)
  • Of course, Google Ads and Microsoft Ads allow you to run display campaigns as well.

Targeting For Display Ads

  • Display still allows you to refine your targeting to reach the right people at the right time. 
  • You already know a lot about your typical hotel guest, from the most common age groups making reservations, to the geographic areas where they travel from. 
  • You should use this knowledge to entice these groups to start thinking about taking a trip while putting your hotel top of mind at the top of the funnel.

Tracking Display Ads

  • Most display platforms offer tracking pixels or custom URLs that will allow you to track from impression, to click, to purchase. 
  • Return on Ad Spend will be a metric you can view, but it is not the sole determining factor of the success of the demand generation campaign. 
  • After potential guests see these top-of-funnel demand generating ads, they will very likely use many devices and channels, which will reduce the accuracy of the direct ROAS metric. For this reason, we will look at other factors to determine if we were successful in generating additional demand for your hotel.

Proper KPIs for Display Ads

Google Trends:

  • Google Trends is a tool used to determine if more or fewer people are searching for particular queries and topics in a given time frame. 
  • You will be able to compare the demand of particular queries to previous years and previous months. 
  • An increase in brand-related queries during and after running a demand generation campaign will be one indicator you can point to when judging the effectiveness of the campaign. 
  • For many hotels, Google Trends allows you to look at many queries related to your brand all at once
    • You can type your hotels brand name into Google Trends “Enter a Search Term or Topic” field
    • You will see it start to populate a few choices; “Search Term, Hotel in (city name), Topic, or if you are a hotel chain, Hotel Chain” 
    • Search Term obviously gives you the demand of that particular search term
    • Hotel in (city name) and Topic will give you demand for many queries related to the term you entered

Google Search Console

  • Within Google Search Console we are able to see the number of impressions and clicks for a variety of brand-related queries. 
  • You should view this data both during and after the demand generation campaigns have run. 
  • You should then compare to previous years and previous months to see if the number of impressions for brand-related queries has increased. This will be another indicator of the campaign’s effectiveness. 
  • Here is how you find the data you’re looking for
    • Go to the “Performance” section of Google Search Console
    • Select Queries
    • There are three bars to the right indicating filtering options
    • Select Top Queries > Contains > All or part of your brand name
    • This will display only branded queries
    • Next select the date range toward the top and then select “Compare”
    • Here is where you can enter the dates your campaign ran and compare to a previous period and previous year to see what impact your display demand generation campaigns had on your overall branded search queries

Site Traffic

  • You should also use overall site traffic as an indicator of the success of these demand generation campaigns. 
  • You should take a channel agnostic approach and view traffic from all sources. We know many people who see display ads don’t click on them directly but may come back and search, or visit the site directly after seeing the ad, similar to the billboard effect.  
  • Compare overall site traffic both during and after the demand generation campaigns have run. Then compare previous years and previous months to see if the number of site visitors has increased.

Bookings And Revenue

  • As we mentioned previously, the direct Conversion Rate and Return On Ad Spend of these campaigns will not be the sole KPIs like we use for bottom-of-funnel campaigns. 
  • Much like Site Traffic, you should view revenue across all channels (all online and offline channels) both during and after the demand generation campaigns have run. 
  • Then compare to previous years and previous months to see if bookings and revenue visitors have increased.

Overall Display Campaign Success

Review all of the above KPIs together to determine: 

1. Did you increase the demand for the hotel? 

2. Did the increase in demand increase the overall number of bookings and revenue?

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