To run a campaign in Zemanta, you'll first need credit, which you cannot add manually. The credit line will be assigned to your account once Zemanta has received a signed contract from you. The credit will appear in your account as shown in the image below:
Allocated credit is the sum of budgets you've already created, whereas unallocated credit represents the credit that can still be used to create new budgets.
Once a credit line is assigned to your account, you can create budget items and associate them with campaigns you're planning. So while credit is associated with an account, budgets are associated with campaigns. In short, budgets are necessary for running a campaign and consist of media spend, data cost, the license fee and your selected margin (optional).
Credits and budgets serve as caps to prevent overspending, but you will only be billed for your actual media spend, data cost and license fee.
Creating Budget Items
1. While logged into Zemanta at the campaign level, select Settings and scroll down to the Budget section. As new budget items can only be created with unallocated credit, you’ll need to see if you have unallocated credit in your account before proceeding, as shown in the image below.
2. Click the + Add Budget Item button to associate a desired budget to your campaign.
3. Enter your Start Date, End Date, Total Budget and Margin (optional). You can also include notes you might have for the campaign. The decision of whether or not to use the margin is an important one, as it will be reflected in many metrics.
Using the Margin field means that the amount entered in the Total budget field also includes your margin, and as such represents the budget of the end client, not the agency. The daily spend cap, your bid CPC and costs such as average CPC, average CPM etc. will include your selected margin, along with media spend, data spend and the license fee.
Not using Margin
Leaving the margin field blank means that the total budget does not include your margin. The daily spend cap, your bid CPC and costs such as average CPC, average CPM etc. will only include media spend, data spend and the license fee, but not your margin. The amount billed to you will be equal to the amount entered in the Total budget field.
Regardless of whether or not you are using the margin, your monthly invoice will only include your actual media spend, data spend and the license fee.
4. Save the budget item and in doing so, it will appear in your Active Budget Items. You can track your spend by viewing this table, specifically the columns Total Spend (amount already spent on the campaign) and Available Budget (remaining amount).
Editing Budget Items
You can edit active budget items at any time by changing start/end dates, the total budget and the margin. Select the pencil icon at the right-hand side of the page next to each budget item.
Depleted Budget Items
Once a budget item has been spent Zemanta keeps a historical record under Depleted Budget Items. In order to re-start your campaign you can create a new budget item following the steps above. If your campaign hits the end date without spending all budget, the remaining amount will be added back to your credit line for future budget items in the next three days.
You can learn about creating a daily spend cap here.