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Mapping 1.8m postcodes in Salesforce: decreased admin time and increased sales

One of our clients owns multiple advertising assets across 137 locations in the United Kingdom. The sales team works on maximising the occupancy of brands in these advertising assets. This means they need to be talking as much as they can to multiple stakeholders: local and national, to effect more sales of ad spaces on these assets. Typically, in order to make best use of the ad space, the brands ask to advertise based on a rule: usually within x miles or within x hours drive from their outlet. To provide options to the brand, our client used an outdated on-premise software that had the UK postcodes pre-loaded and offered limited functionalities of search. The tool only allowed for restricted number of queries to be run at a certain time and had limited export functionalities. Also, it was standalone with no integration to the list of assets our client owned. All these factors meant that multiple sources of the same data had to be maintained and a lot of manhours had to be wasted executing a simple task such as ‘give me the number of ad spaces we own within 5 miles radius of M60 7RA that has male washroom assets and D48 assets’. Something had to be done. Image 1: The on-premise legacy tool used (illustrative) We began by understanding the use cases and the goals the sales team users wanted to achieve. The primary goal was to put the mapping functionality to increase sales revenue. Subsequent goals included ease-of-use, quick turnaround and unified data access. The sales team needed the functionality to search by postcode, town, county, region, country and by uploading a CSV file of all of the above. We gathered that, the use cases and goals, if implemented, will help the sales team provide better value to the brands they served. After consultation, we scoped the project to run in two phases: the immediate priorities will be covered in phase one, in which we proposed to use Salesforce’s native mapping functionality and in phase two, we suggested we will have API integrations with Google Maps. Though this approach involved losing some existing use cases (e.g. ability to get a route from location A to location B), the benefits of moving to a Salesforce solution outweighed the setbacks. We proceeded with implementing the solution and used ONS postcode data API to ingest more than 1.8 million UK postcodes into client’s Salesforce org. We optimised the data usage by creating custom objects that reduced the querying time when the tool is used. We also built a custom Aura component with sophisticated search functionalities that allowed the user to search by different variables and search by uploading CSV files. At client’s request, we implemented CSV export functionality that provided information about the locations the search returned and the types of assets available in those locations. Image 2:  Landing page with search functionality Image 3: Search results tabulated and exportable Image 4: CSV upload functionality The rolled out phase one immediately enhanced the sales team’s ability to self-service with up to 75% of time saved compared to the legacy solution. Now, the sales team could use the mapping tool to understand and present various options available to the brands they were selling to. This increased the trust the brands had with the sales team and led to better close rates. In a matter of days, the sales team fully adopted the Salesforce, single-source-of-truth solution we built and have made it part of their sales toolkit. Currently, it’s being used every day to add better value to the brands they serve.

24×7 ad trafficking: time and money for publisher focusing on core competencies

Our publisher clients in the digital media and digital out of home media typically own multiple assets or varying formats and specifications. While their primary focus is usually on continuing to grow their list of real estate they can offer for brands to advertise in and to ensure maximum occupancy of those real estate, many of them were also handling the trafficking and scheduling of the creative ad assets to their real estate. The latter not being their core competency has the potential and usually very quickly became unmanageable without significant investment of leadership and management time and effort leading to lack of focus on the primary goals. Thus, our publisher clients faced loss of revenue, stressed teams and unhappy brands. The key challenges with trafficking of creative ad assets and scheduling of them in the publisher’s CMS are manifold. Some of our clients own real estate of varying specifications. Some of their out of home estate can play motion, while other can’t. Some need to be of a certain resolution while other of another. A smorgasbord of variations mean the creative agencies that supply ad copies to the publisher find it easy to get lost and end up supplying ad assets of wrong specs. Image 1: Iconic real estate like the Shoreditch Canvas demands perfect ad deliver This presents the second challenge to the publisher presenting them with a situation where they have to meticulously check all the assets delivered and where there are errors communicate back to the creative agencies and the paying brands any delays or loss of publishing space because of the errors. Thirdly, even if it were made as the responsibility of a dedicated operations team, the challenges of coordinating with the sales team to avoid any penalties or explanations of errors meant a significant management and leadership time and energy was spent on nitty-gritties that can be managed by specialist provider of such operations. Brysa offered specialised ad trafficking services to the publishers. We set up a team whose core competency would be build and run a streamlined process that achieved the following: efficient handling of variations on the specifications; clear, timely communication with all the stakeholders; measuring performance internally by setting up and following an SLA-driven process. We quickly achieved not only proficiency in the ad trafficking processes of digital media and digital out of home media industry, we also became very good at scaling up, which helped our publisher clients to expand the range of options they provided to their paying brands. Image 2: Real-time tracking of ad trafficking process in Brysa desk enables peak performance Because of the comfort and efficiencies we delivered, our publisher clients now sell trigger/ event based campaign playout entrusting Brysa to delivery accurately to brief. They also have become more hands-off in the ad trafficking process safe in the knowledge that even if the creative agency delivers ad copies to incorrect spec, we will manage the situation and escalate to the publisher when necessary. Lastly there is also strong reporting provided by us that helps the publisher clients track our continuously improving performance. A combination of the above factors have helped the publishers focus more on their core competencies which is to grow their real estate and sell more ad spaces in them.