Tis the season - programmatic advertising

Tis the season for programmatic advertising

Many issues surfaced for programmatic advertising in 2015. We need to learn from these problems if we're to avoid a repeat. What does 2016 have in store?

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Programmatic advertising has had a turbulent year. Advertising budgets started to swing away from traditional channels. But budgets didn’t fully swing to digital because of a lack of trust in programmatic.

Programmatic advertising in 2016

Many issues rose to the top of the programmatic advertising cons pile in 2015. The good news is, these problems can be addressed and even put to rest in 2016. This is largely thanks to the work being done behind the scenes by ad tech companies.

We must, however, learn from the problems we’ve faced this year if we’re to avoid the havoc and scrutiny we experienced in 2015.

Stop adapting and start innovating

In this fresh industry, many companies have attempted to cash in while cutting corners. You just need to take a look at the digital ‘lumascapes’ to see how crowded the industry is. It’s tricky for anyone to navigate the maze of choice, let alone settle on the right partner.

Lumascape of video programmatic advertising

Media is consumed very differently today. People communicate, entertain and learn from many new sources. Expecting a seamless experience for everyone, with no one trying to take advantage, is pretty ludicrous. In this crowded world, there’s a real need for specialists who can identify and build responses to programmatic advertising pitfalls. These specialists will improve performance and revenues in 2016, so don’t count them out.

Premium standards

In April 2015, the IAB reported 68% of marketers anticipated increasing their digital video ad spend over the next year.

Marketers will want to know what they’re buying and see ROI from their digital ad spend. And so, the same questions always arise:

  • Is it viewable?

  • Can brand safety be guaranteed?

  • Is it human?

Measuring quality

We can break down these areas into segments for a better overview of the quality of inventory. This comes down to how much we know about the inventory and where it comes from. This is often limited by how much the publisher is willing to give away about their own data. The data segments we look for:

  • Player size

  • True URL (the inventory’s original source)

  • Device

  • Geography

  • Relevance

It’s no secret programmatic advertising has endured a year of inefficiency. However, according to eMarketer, ad spend in programmatic video is set to jump 84.5% in 2016’. Proprietary tech, such as that built to drive Coull’s video ad exchange, is stepping up to implement solutions. We’ve built a new breed of ad exchange, and so we have specific standards for programmatic advertising and quality inventory expectations.

Quality inventory on demand

Video on demand (VOD) is now a huge part of our lives and so, subscription services like Netflix, NowTV and BBC iPlayer are competing for your dollars every month. Therefore, there are huge opportunities for highly competitive places, like America, to make revenue from advertiser based video on demand (AVOD).

As more VOD services become available, we predict that video will become increasingly popular on mobile devices. More mobile video content could mean huge opportunities for mobile advertising.

Mobile video optimisationMobile video programmatic advertising

It’s clear that mobile video is still not being fully-optimized. But hopefully, this will encourage better ad creatives and more user control. This will not be another ‘year of mobile’. It will be a year of programmatic advertising tech and the growth of mobile advertising.

This year will see mobile video grabbing advertising budgets, but networks will have their work cut out before any real improvements.

For mobile advertising to succeed, video publishers and platforms need to allocate budget to make video compliant and standardised. Also, mobile advertising needs agencies with creative gusto, willing to drive better ad formats and better stories. Perhaps more importantly, we need to make a better user experience, otherwise, ad blockers will win.

For any of this to happen, industry bodies need to step up and ensure video inventory is held to higher standards. This means ensuring VPAID compliancy and video players are up to spec.

It’s time publishers work with their video and tech partners to ensure standards and metrics can be met. This is really the only way we’re going to start seeing consistent reporting and better user experiences.

Love planted a garden. But then they put the walls up

Walled gardens surfaced in 2015 but not without publishers becoming much more self-aware. In order to go around these walls, publishers began using header bidding and took back control from Google DFP. As Google and Facebook work to keep content and data inside their own bubble, it’s up to publishers and advertisers to review the value exchange. It’s also up to ad exchanges and technology platforms to provide better options for media companies.

Ad blocking, viewability, fraud and data security was at the centre in 2015. But better ad experiences, mobile video and better measurement standards will hopefully be the industry saviours in 2016.

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Posted by simonholliday