Naming convention is the backbone of digital marketing. If you’re already working in an agency or a brand, chances are your team would already have a naming convention in place. Continue reading to download a free naming convention template.
While I am sure that your existing naming convention is already operational and suitable for your company or team size, the purpose of this post is to emphasize the power of naming conventions – especially cross-platforms. However, if your team does not have a standard naming system, we would highly recommend to use the resource available at the end of the article to implement a system for your team.
Before we talk about the “what” and “how” of naming conventions, we would like to discuss on the “why.”
Why is naming convention so important?
It is not just another “rule” or “good practice” to follow for the sake of it – there are plenty of benefits when it comes to naming convention. If you are working in an agency, you might have a team structure which may look like the following.
A robust naming convention will more effectively and efficiently aid cross-functional campaign management. Here are the top benefits of a good naming convention.
1) Pull data easily and understand campaign attributes immediately
For example, if your analyst is responsible for producing the agency’s reports, the naming convention will help him/her to easily pull the data and immediately derive the parameters of the campaign, line items, creatives, ad groups and others, rather than having to access the campaigns individually to understand which targeting or settings were applied.
2) Accurate attribution and tracking
Another great benefit of having a solid naming convention is cross-platform measurement. However, this is more applicable on a creative level. Depending on what ad server your company is using, you could be using more than one demand-side platform (DSP) which may not be integrated with the ad server. A clear example of an integration between ad server and DSP is Google’s Campaign Manager and Display and Video 360. In this case, the Campaign Manager can easily pull the respective line items and insertion orders if named and distinguished properly.
However, if you are trading on another DSP, you need a proper naming convention for your trafficked creatives to accurately reflect the campaign attributes.
Tip: Always align on the dimensions and metrics you need to track. This is so that at setting up and trafficking phase, the creatives and campaign can be split by these dimensions for post campaign analyses.
3) Easily reconcile invoices and payments
This is one benefit that most people overlook at. With a proper naming convention, account managers, finance analysts and programmatic specialists will spend significantly less time reconciling invoices and ensuring the correct payment is made.
Other good reads on naming convention specific to digital marketing can be found below:
- What’s in a Name? The Importance of Campaign Naming Conventions by Mighty Hive (Highly recommended)
- How to name your digital advertising campaign like a pro by Funnel.io
How should we set up the naming convention?
I highly recommend you to read this article What’s in a Name? The Importance of Campaign Naming Conventions by Mighty Hive. It sums up the components of a naming convention. There are also a couple of other best practices tip which we completely agree with.
Besides learnings from this article, we have also added a couple of variables which we think are useful.
- Purchase Order or Unique Campaign ID
- Start Period & End Period
- Others (Creative sizes, audience segment, creative messaging versions, device etc.)
Incorporating our own experience and research, we have built a very simple naming convention generator. Disclaimer: this is our own suggestion, you may make a copy of this and edit however you wish.
How to use the free naming convention generator template?
1) Make a copy of the sheet (File > Make a Copy)
2) Under Universal Setup tab, select a delimiter and put in the Company Name, Brand/Product (if any), and the Purchase Order or Unique Campaign ID.
3) Change the values of each variable under Data Validator tab according to how your company labels. For example, Channel could be also the respective platforms such as FB, Google Ads, DV360 and others.
4) Under the DSPs Naming Convention Generator tab, start filling up the cells from Column D onwards. We have split them by hierarchy level – Campaign, Insertion Orders/Campaigns, Line Items/Ad Groups. Depending on the DSP you use, Hierarchy #1 might not apply.
Once you’ve filled up everything according to your media plan, copy the output and paste them on the UI or bulk create sheet (if applicable).
Now you can name your campaigns like a pro and track everything and anything easily across teams!