MadTech Sketch: The Mechanics of Curation

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Curation; everyone in ad tech is talking about it, but what does it actually mean for the industry? In this Sketch, Ciaran O’Kane looks at the mechanics of curation.

Curation can be split into two parts - demand generation and activation, let’s look at the each part:

Direct demand generation

In the ad tech landscape, direct demand is the cornerstone of effective curation, driving significant value for Supply-Side Platforms (SSPs). This power stems from the ability to directly connect high-quality inventory with premium advertisers, ensuring targeted and efficient ad placements that benefit both publishers and brands. As a result, SSPs are increasingly focusing on hiring agency sales professionals to bolster their direct demand capabilities.

Agency sales teams are pivotal in cultivating and maintaining relationships with advertising agencies and brands. By leveraging their expertise, SSPs can better curate ad inventory, matching the most relevant ads with suitable audiences, which enhances campaign performance and increases return on investment for advertisers.

Moreover, direct demand through agency sales provides SSPs with greater control over ad quality and relevance. This control mitigates issues such as ad fraud and ensures compliance with brand safety standards.

Curation activation

In ad tech, curation platforms are essential for setting up Programmatic Marketplace (PMP) deals, integrating inventory and signals into these transactions. As third-party cookies (3PC) become obsolete, curation stands out as the future of targeted advertising.

Signal vendors, evolving from traditional data companies, play a crucial role in this ecosystem. They either facilitate the sale of PMPs or provide the necessary data for enhanced PMP+ campaigns. Among various signals, attention has emerged as a significant metric, guiding the relevance and effectiveness of curated ads.

By focusing on curation, ad tech platforms can ensure more precise and efficient ad placements, benefiting advertisers and publishers alike. This strategic shift underscores the growing importance of curated ad environments in a privacy-centric digital landscape.