ROI can seem like a mythical creature for digital advertisers—something everyone wants to capture but remains stubbornly elusive. Despite the explosive growth of digital advertising technology, proving and measuring ROI continues to be a challenge.

To start, many platforms that track and measure ROI are not standardized, resulting in metrics that are inconsistent. In addition, the conventional currency used to measure success tends to be based on quantity rather than quality, leading to an onslaught of content created purely to drive traffic. In this way, inefficient measurement capabilities lead to irrelevant content, which is why we’re now faced with an abundance of broad and untargeted efforts that bombard consumers with off-mark messaging.

Accurate measurement is a critically important part of delivering the most impactful content to consumers. That said, let’s dive into why digital advertisers need to pay more attention to measurement in today’s highly competitive marketplace.

Personalized messaging

It’s a no-brainer that customers want ads that are relevant to their lives, otherwise they are just noise—distracting at best and alienating at worst. This principle has never been stronger than it is today with the ubiquity of mobile devices. Smartphones have become an intimate part of our lives, carried with us into bedrooms, workplaces, and doctors offices, and used to navigate the countless details of our days.

In this context, seeing an irrelevant, impersonal ad can feel invasive, and given the wealth of data advertisers have about consumers, it comes across as unprofessional. This is why personalization is a core component of mobile marketing success, especially among millennials. USC reports that 85% of millennials are more likely to make a purchase if it is personalized to their interests, both in-store and with digital displays. And according to another recent report from SSI and ICLP, it’s not just millennials: Baby Boomers also want personalized customer experiences that are responsive and communicative. To deliver personalized content, digital advertisers need accurate measurement. They need to know if their ads are reaching the right people with the right message at the right time.