Programmatic ad buying is using software to buy digital advertising. It differs from traditional methods with their requests for proposals, tenders, quotes and human negotiation: with programmatic buying, machines and algorithms purchase display space on your behalf.
However, the ad buying process isn’t usually wholly automated. Yes, you are given the opportunity to optimize and improve your ads and do it more efficiently. And you are not limited by the labor-intensive and menial task of manually preparing insertion orders or ad tags.
But you will still need to plan and optimize advertising.
Is programmatic advertising perfect? No, and it has had some teething problems: Verizon pulled its online ads in 2017 when they began appearing on “non-sanctioned websites”, for example. Since then, measures have been taken to control ad placement more carefully. In fact, a massive investment has been made by Google to achieve better brand safety.
However, these teething problems don’t take away from the fact that programmatic is really different from manual methods, and intrinsically much more useful for advertisers.
How Programmatic Advertising Is Different: From Mass Advertising To Rich, Strategic Targeting
“Programmatic is extremely efficient and unparalleled in its ability to pair rich audience data with ad inventory and targeting”, says eMarketer senior analyst Lauren Fisher.
One of the main reasons for this is that programmatic is about decision-making based on the intelligent use of data. It’s the beginning of a quantitative skill set that will soon be necessary for effective advertising and to keep up with the increasingly-irritated and demanding consumer thanks to its ability to produce results with fewer impressions.
Let’s look at a couple of examples of just how different programmatic can look. A media agency recently launched an automated trading desk that allows advertisers to purchase digital out-of-home (DOOH) advertising programmatically.
Historically, DOOH buyers have always bought advertising manually and had the opportunity to purchase adds from a 27,000 dataset route. The new programmatic system allows brands to reach an audience with more flexibility, and takes insights from around 55 million data points, including geolocation.
Adext AI, the world’s first audience management tool that allows you automatically manage your ad budget over 20 demographic groups per ad and performs more than 480 daily adjustments to each of your ads across Facebook Ads, Google AdWords and Instagram.
Are tools like Adext becoming popular? Yes, programmatic is sending shock waves through the advertising landscape, and there’s no way to deny it.
The Impact Programmatic Ads Are Having On The Advertising Industry
Programmatic advertising became the most popular and widely-used type of digital display advertising in the USA in 2015:
The same occurred around the same time in the U.K.:
Since then, programmatic digital display advertising has become the norm. In the US alone, $27.47 billion were spent on it just last year.
What’s more, programmatic is currently being rapidly adopted across a variety of channels and ad formats.
Here’s how the proportions of non-RTB (real-time bidding) programmatic and RTB vs. non-programmatic are stacking up for the next few years:
Source: BI Intelligence
Yes, by 2020, 65% of all digital ad revenue will be coming from programmatic, if not more, considering just how much it is changing how we advertise.
How Programmatic Advertising Are Changing How Advertisers’ Work
Programmatic is changing the way whole businesses operate, from sales teams to marketers engaged in email marketing. But it’s affecting the daily lives of advertisers more than anyone else. Here’s how their lives and work is transforming:
They’re Getting Comfortable With The Science Of Attribution
With programmatic ad buying, advertisers no longer have to worry about the number of ads that are going out. To ensure quality, and thanks to the abundance of audience and campaign insights that programmatic buying now provides, brands can make smarter decisions than ever before. They include added capabilities like viewability, digital gross rating point (digital GRP), organic search lift and attribution modeling. These can all provide insights into what target audiences did after viewing an ad, perception changes and what performed at what cost, as well as what did not.
They’re Touching The World
The global move toward programmatic advertising platforms in China, Southeast Asia, Brazil, Mexico, Poland, Central and Eastern Europe, Turkey, the Middle East and North Africa, Japan and Korea—in addition to the existing markets in the UK, Western Europe, Canada, Australia and the Nordics—gives multinational advertisers and those interested in expanding into other geographical locations the opportunity to establish a consistent data-driven and technology-enabled approach across every location they operate (or want to operate) within.
Advertisers in the automotive, customer packaged goods (CPG), personal finance and retail categories were the first to take on this global platform approach and enjoy the benefits that reaching out and touching the world can bring for their brands.
They’re Mastering The Art Of Digital Storytelling
In an omnichannel, multi-touchpoint reality, it would be easy to use adtech to mindlessly retarget prospects or lose prospects by drowning them in a sea of irrelevant messaging.
But advertisers with experience in programmatic have found new ways of using the forgotten art of storytelling to create a memorable brand experience for the prospect.
They are leveraging the forgotten art of storytelling, intelligent placement, and each medium’s strengths to best tell a different part of the story across channels and formats. Once they have gathered exciting insights on their user behavior, they can think out of the box to engage them at various points of their journey for personalization at scale.
They Agree That Managing the Campaign-Buying Process Manually Is No Longer Acceptable
Once advertisers have left manual behind, it’s hard for them to see why other advertisers are still wondering if programmatic is for them.
As the number of variables and data sources intensifies, it’s becoming less reasonable and feasible for brands to manage the ad-buying process like they always have.
Consumers access brand content across multiple devices, screens, and channels; and with a broader range of inventory and ad choices, personalization at scale requires algorithms and a robust data-driven approach. The future of ad-buying has to be automated… Competitive markets need real-time optimization, and only machines that work alongside human minds will be able to keep brands afloat.
They’re Tackling More Data & Dominating It
Advertisers that use programmatic have more data at their fingertips, and they can test, learn and find the content that works best in a scalable fashion. This work sharpens their data handling skills and understanding of how they can begin to dominate that data right from the beginning of a campaign.
This approach has a few benefits associated with it:
- Savings on time and resources
- Greater control over their ad spend
- The freedom to get more strategic and impress their superiors with unprecedented results, over and over again.
These results apply particularly to those advertisers using tools that harness the power of AI and omnichannel, as they provide insights they can understand and use to inform optimization and future campaigns.
Adext AI is one such tool. It allows advertisers, marketers and even small businesses to effectively and automatically manage data from multiple audiences, as well as to grow their businesses without the overwhelm or confusion that can come from managing large amounts of data.
Adext not only tests 20 different demographic groups per ad, and automates budget management at a cross-channel level, but it also has a distinctive advantage: It acts upon its insights.
While some tools will just provide you with information on the campaigns they are managing, Adext makes around 480 changes per ad, every day, based on the insights it has gained about your specific campaigns. That’s why this tool has been able to provide an average of 83% more ad conversions than any other software, tool or human, without you needing to increase your current budget and in just 10 days.
If you’d like connect Adext’s Artificial Intelligence today into your Google AdWords and Facebook Ads accounts through a quick 5-minute set-up process, then just claim your free trial here.
We also recommend you to check our step by step guide to get started with Adext AI since it includes some expert tips and key recommendations to get the best results with it.
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