Why eBay is doing more brand advertising in the UK
As more advertisers try to bring agency capabilities in-house, eBay is recognizing the limits of that approach. After years of moving programmatic and creative work in-house, the online marketplace is thinking about reversing course.
Three years ago, eBay spent 90 percent of its ad spend on performance marketing, all done internally. That came at the expense of the brand, he said. Building the brand offline has been a big focus this year. To that end, eBay has started to do some offline advertising, and it thinks agencies can help with creative ideas and measuring the impact of that spending.
“You can drink too much of your own Kool-Aid,” said Gareth Jones, CMO for eBay in the U.K said at an event hosted by agency network TIPi Group. “We’ve got some amazing agencies that we use, so we’re increasingly thinking about how we out-house some of the work we do.”
In TV, eBay is using insight from its agencies to create media plans based on ones that performed well in certain U.K. regions and run them in other parts of the U.K. Some tests have had 200,000 models running at any one time, said Jones. EBay plans to track those trends globally to inform media plans in its key countries.
It will take time for the benefits of offline ads to be felt, as eBay acknowledged this year when it told financial analysts that its latest campaign had yet to move the needle.
“The big challenge we’re grappling with is how to measure offline ads with the same sort of pseudo-precision as we do our performance,” said Jones. “It becomes very difficult to move budget to the offline space and still have the same types of conversations with stakeholders because you don’t know the efficiency, you haven’t got the margin ROIs and you haven’t got the efficacy of spend in terms of cause and effect.”
Jones said the company is looking at creating teams that balance the performance-driven side of the brand with its ambitions to create memorable ads.
EBay’s stance on agencies contrasts with that of many marketers that are questioning the value those businesses provide. A recent survey of 412 ANA members showed 78 percent of marketers in the U.S. have some form of an in-house agency, compared to 58 percent who said they did in 2013.
Subscribe to the Digiday Retail Briefing: A weekly email with news, analysis and research covering the modernization of retail and e-commerce.
Member Exclusive‘You can’t just cut a little bit’: Why this moment could force agencies to accelerate necessary changes to their business models
To survive, agencies have to change how they do business instead of making cuts here or there to manage for the next quarter.
‘We knew it would impact our business negatively’: How joining the Facebook boycott affected one small advertiser
For small boycotting advertisers like JibJab, staying off the Facebook advertising ecosystem permanently is untenable.
‘Exceeded our marketers readiness’: As e-commerce growth accelerates, Dentsu is adding a new practice to meet the demand
The commerce practice was already in the works but the pandemic and changing consumer behavior due to the pandemic accelerated it.
SponsoredPublishers: Assessing risk and ensuring payments in times of crisis
As the industry navigates the continued impacts of COVID-19, here’s the questions publishers should ask their programmatic partners or ad management providers to protect themselves from clawbacks and lost revenue.
‘Hooked on the Facebook drug’: Media buyers say smaller brands will return to the platform, but bigger brands will continue to boycott
Large consumer brands aren’t happy with Facebook’s response to the boycott so far and will likely wait until fall to reconsider the boycott.
Nobody in elevators, fewer gag lines: How an agency is remaking its ads to fit the coronavirus era
The process has allowed the full-service agency to enlist its post-production arm to help its clients adjust ads rather than press pause on advertising due to the ad content.