DoubleClick's Performics unit yesterday published an index of 50 ongoing search marketing campaigns. It's positioning the report, which will be published on an ongoing basis, as a benchmark by which search marketers can assess their ad spend and ROI.
In addition to accumulating search campaign data, the Performics 50 index introduces a new metric, cost per keyword (CPK), which DoubleClick argues is a more effective measure than cost per click of "real monthly cost" for search campaigns.
CPK is calculated by taking an advertiser's total monthly search expenditures -- essentially CPC multiplied by the number of clicks -- and dividing that by total active keywords per campaign. Advertisers can compare their own results against the Performics 50 benchmark, which is "similar to comparing the individual performance of a stock against the broader performance of the Dow Jones average," according to DoubeClick.
The inaugural Q2 report reveals that CPK went up during the holidays and has since dropped. With the exception of the Q4 holiday season, CPK costs have been stable, even though overall click volume is increasing. According to the report, the growth of click traffic illustrates that growth is coming from both high and low cost keywords being added to marketers' campaigns.
DoubleClick does not disclose names of companies in the Performics 50, though it says they are a "stable subset" taken from campaigns currently managed by Performics.
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