ExchangeWire caught up with Charles Gros and Yohann Dupasquier, co-founders & owners of Tradelab, to explain the current data-driven ad market in France.
Is there a lot of room for new exchange trading specialists in the market, given the number of independent agencies in the market?
That’s a good question. We think in France the market has had big and quick growth, and maybe there are a little bit too many actors at buying side, but when you see affiliate platforms, for example, there are about ten in France and they work pretty well, so you still have the space. After that, people who are going to open a trading desk now, they’re going to have difficulties to be efficient. Mature independent trading desks are really advanced.
Tradelab has its own analytics and technology connected to DSPs and we’ve worked for two years on campaigns and developing our own data, so we have learned a lot. We use several DSPs, and select the best one for each campaign, we are connected to all the AdExchanges, and to specific publishers.
For now, we think that we are more advanced than the majority of agency trading desks, they don’t have the people and are not technologically oriented. Tradelab has 13 people in France and we have a technology team based in Singapore supervised by our CTO. Data, own technology, learning and people make challenges for the newcomers more complicated.
Is the market large enough in France to support the newer trading desks, or do you feel it’s being saturated?
The market will probably be more concentrated in the next two or three years. Some of us will close, some will probably be bought by agencies, networks or bigger independent trading desks. But the market is just at the beginning, and for now we don’t really feel a saturation.
How advanced would you say the automated market is in France, as opposed to say Germany or the UK?
The market here has had some backwardness, but it is definitely growing fast, on the buy side and sell side. When you look at the publishers or the sales houses in France, it’s very unique. They are opening private exchanges, especially the big newspaper or TV publishers. For example, when we started Tradelab we sold only performance-oriented campaigns, but now it’s about 70% that and we have about 25-30% branding campaigns, and developed tools dedicated to it. We also deliver more rich media formats, like expandable banners and pre-roll videos.
Do you think the space is migrating towards automatic trading taking over direct buys?
It’s impossible to have a direct answer to this, but we definitely trust in this change. Special operations will necessarily be done by people, and direct negotiation, this part is quite creative. But all the rest, will probably be transferred to RTB.
Would you say there’s a lot of RTB liquidity in the market right now?
There is a lot more of space available, and at a quite good and efficient price today. There is a lot more of inventory than advertisers to buy it today, and that’s a good opportunity
What insights can you share about the French market as a whole?
In France, right at the moment, one of the most important subjects in digital is RTB. The big agency CEOs, the digital communication managers, have understood the importance of RTB. It’s the beginning, because the market is very new, but it’s going to be BIG.
How quickly would you say this is happening?
For us, 2012 is already a big year, of course we were young in 2011. In the beginning, the advertisers spent only about €5k or €10k for a test, now we have tests that are €20k, €30k sometimes. People can spend more than €30k every month on RTB with us, for example. We have many advertisers like that. Like an affiliation programme, it’s an RTB programme, because when it works, they have good performance — they spend more and more every month.
Can you talk about your mobile solution? Where is that at the moment?
It’s really the beginning. I mean, the French mobile market in general is small. The real model of performance monitoring has not been invented yet. We are testing several campaigns, and we definitely think that mobile will finally become a strong market, but we have to admit that is not really the case now.
Can you give us an overview of the current video market in France?
The preroll is live, 175 million impressions per month in France. Plus, we’re getting more inventory, and more premium inventory, less UGC inventory, more volume, more advertisers. And we already run a lot of Video in-banner campaigns, 33 billion impressions available a month, and it’s really efficient, at the same media cost as the Iab standards formats. There is already a really good opportunity in video.Global Desk Editor