The 5Ws of Third-Party Point-of-Care Advertising Audits

March 7, 2018

How AAM is working to promote advertising transparency at doctors’ offices and pharmacies.

George Bartman, Vice President, Sales


Pharmaceutical marketers and content providers are finding new ways to share relevant messages with patients at doctors’ offices through print materials, screens, tablets and more. As advertising investment in these point-of-care channels continues to increase, marketers may have questions about the validity and quality of the campaign results. Until recently, advertisers relied on the content provider’s word that the resulting data is accurate. But is that enough?

An independent, third-party audit brings a higher level of transparency to conversations between point-of-care advertisers and content providers. At AAM, we have combined years of print and digital auditing experience to create a certification specifically for point-of-care content providers.

Here’s a brief introduction to the who, what, where, when and why of AAM’s third-party point-of-care audits:


WHAT: A Third-Party Point-of-Care Audit

A third-party audit goes behind the scenes to determine whether a point-of-care content provider’s system is delivering accurate, reliable and consistent metrics. The audit may include:

  • Pre-Audit Assessment - An initial examination of the company’s business processes and integrated advertising delivery system including an analysis of what controls are in place to ensure accurate reporting.
  • Digital Advertisement Delivery System Audit - An in-depth look at every facet of the digital advertisement delivery process including installation of hardware/software at point-of-care locations, inventory control/playlist development, proof of play data (i.e., impression measurement), data processing and reporting.
  • Verification of Print Materials - Confirmation that print collateral has shipped to specific locations and is being displayed at those locations.


WHO: Point-of-Care Content Providers

The more transparency point-of-care content providers achieve the better. Engaging in a third-party audit demonstrates the provider’s commitment to transparency by verifying that their system has optimal accuracy, reliability and consistency.


WHERE: Digital & Print

In a point-of-care audit, two areas are examined:

  • Digital Delivery System - Every aspect of the digital advertisement delivery process is examined from hardware/software installed at each location to data processing and final reporting.
  • Print Distribution - This portion of the audit includes verifying that the collateral was shipped and received as well as confirmation that the materials were displayed and viewable at each location.


WHEN: Continuous Monitoring

After the initial certification, continuous monitoring is in place to ensure that the platform consistently performs at the level established during the initial audit and provides ongoing, reliable metrics that advertisers can rely on.


WHY: Trust + Transparency = Results

Trust is vital to the success of any relationship. However, to earn an advertiser’s trust, transparency must come first.

Audits nurture this transparency by providing advertisers with an independent assessment of their advertising ecosystem. The audit process can benefit point-of-care content providers in other ways by giving them experienced feedback that can lead to system improvements and optimization. The more committed point-of-care content providers are to the quality of their advertising delivery systems, the more advertisers will trust using it. Investing in a third-party audit is proof of that commitment.


Want to learn more about how point-of-care audits can help you gain trust with your advertisers? Contact me at

Previous Article
Circulation 101: General U.S. Newspaper Circulation Terms
Circulation 101: General U.S. Newspaper Circulation Terms

The U.S. newspaper circulation industry comes with its own unique vernacular that is used throughout AAM ru...

Next Article
The Top 10 U.S. Magazines with Circulation Gains for 2H 2017
The Top 10 U.S. Magazines with Circulation Gains for 2H 2017

New consumer magazine Snapshot report shows several titles reported gains for the second half of 2017.


Navigate your way through the media landscape with AAM's Buy/Sell Connection.

First Name
Last Name
Company Name
Thank you!
Error - something went wrong!