Top 5 Programmatic Trends

The IAB Europe recently published a white paper exploring pan-European programmatic trading trends in a bid to harmonise understanding in the ad tech space as well as establishing a pan-European Programmatic Trading Task Force. In this piece Mike Peralta, AudienceScience, CEO, shares his thoughts on upcoming trends within the programmatic marketplace and how it will evolve over the next two years, across the globe.

AudienceScience's Peralta, who helped contribute to the IAB Europe programmatic trading whitepaper, on how this is indicative of how this is a sign of the industry has turned a corner and how both publishers and advertisers increasingly now understand that  they really need to understand programmatic, and not see it as something technical that a third-party is better placed to look after. 

With recent research from IAB Europe showing that 89% of publishers, advertisers and agencies across the frontline of the advertising industry in Europe believe that Programmatic will have a significant impact on digital advertising; it is fantastic to see so many making steps to take ownership and control.

Does this mean we’re finally reaching the stage where all digital advertising dollars will be spent through RTB? Well, there is still a way to go yet – these are the trends in programmatic that we predict will affect the industry over the next two years:

  • C-level ownership of digital spend

Since becoming a hot topic at a senior level, programmatic’s sails really have caught the wind. Many C-level executives have raised heads above the parapet and announced aims to buy all digital media through programmatic channels. I’m sure we are going to see a lot more of this.

  • Bringing advertising technology in-house

For many brands the solution to concerns over the lack of transparency around pricing, quality, safety and complexity of buying ads programmatically has been to establish partnerships directly with a technology company that provides the automation and control required to overcome these issues.

The key to a successful future for programmatic is for brands, agencies and tech providers to adapt and build relationships that drive transparency and create simpler more effective operating models.

Lots of brands are now buying digital ads in-house, but what does this really mean? Do we then need to spend money on training staff or bringing in specialist and expensive skills to manage? 

The answer lies in Enterprise Advertising Management Systems (EAMS), which eliminates the messy task of picking through assembling an ad stack from all of the partners in the slide above. 

An EAMS revolutionises how global advertisers manage their data and execute their digital advertising campaigns by streamlining the process. Eliminating intermediaries, the client knows exactly where their advertising budget goes.

We will see this section of the market grow and platforms like our Gateway system begin to intersect with traditional ERP software and become part of the marketers technology dashboard.

  • Added value and control for advertisers

Programmatic technology is set to become as valuable as offline media, particularly as brands start to own and control their own data. 

Until now, the power of online advertising has been held by publishers and agencies simply because they were responsible for data collection and ownership. However with all data and control advertisers themselves are now able to look at yield optimisation – this is something that has only been possible since the advent of programmatic buying.

Over the next couple of years, programmatic has the potential to become the CRM of advertising – helping brands build lifelong relationships with customers. Looking forwards, advertisers will be able to strengthen these relationships by buying impressions on an individual user basis – I don’t think we are a million miles away from this right now.

  • Explosive growth in video

Each year we hear it is the ‘year of mobile’, though in reality video is the one to watch. Already we are seeing brands spending more on video online and this will continue to grow as advertisers begin to understand the huge benefits.

Mobile market growth has been driven by consumer trends but when we actually talk to brands they are investing more in mobile apps than mobile advertising. The big question that actually needs addressing is not how best do I advertise to my customers on such a small screen? 

But how do I accurately target and measure customers across multiple screens? The issue advertisers are looking to address right now is how to better reach audiences across screens at the right time.

  • Programmatic growth in global markets

The programmatic drive began in the US but growth is spreading worldwide and we are beginning to see different models performing better in different markets with growth particularly in the UK and Europe, with programmatic ad markets in China and Japan set to increase massively by 2017.

Display advertising is becoming more search-like, which is great for advertisers in some ways however search takes too much attribution. It would be really interesting to see how developments take shape in the roll-out of a self serve model - this would work well in the UK market which is much more performance driven than the US.

With quicker test schedules, solutions have the potential to hit the market faster however the UK market doesn’t have access to the infinite inventory that we see in the US and so solutions take longer to scale. Trust in programmatic from markets in Japan and China means that over the next couple of years we will see a shift in majority of ad spend through automated channels here.

As brands become smarter when it comes to programmatic publishers do too. Once more publishers begin to see all inventory has different value to brands depending on their product then the way we trade becomes mutually beneficial – programmatic is not about lower CPMs. The end goal is to fix the ecosystems current problems and create a flexible environment that can be self maintained.