That’s a pretty bold headline. And we’re sure there will be those who disagree. But the fact of the matter is, at the very worst it’s absolutely true, while at the very best, most advertisers only have clues that waste might be minimal. The story we’re about to tell you comes from our discussions with many advertisers, and from our own personal experience having written thousands of media plans for hundreds of clients over more than 50 years. Our observation is this: Aside from direct marketers we don’t know of any advertiser that can tell us exactly the ROI for every advertising dollar they spent -- or even how incremental expenditures have produced a dollar-for-dollar return. With all of the new digital metrics and various attempts to accurately define attribution in cross-media integration campaigns, a lot of theories have emerged but little actionable evidence has been produced to determine precise revenue gains or profit increases. After the fact, yes. Beforehand, no.
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