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Programmatic Ad Fraud Fears Require A Call To Action

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Programmatic is a robust and still growing opportunity for our ecosystem. With change comes opportunity and apprehension, as evidenced by the latest report from eMarketer showing that "nearly 60% of ad agency professionals said they were fearful about the inventory quality available when engaging in programmatic buys."

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Programmatic is a robust and still growing opportunity for our ecosystem. With change comes opportunity and apprehension, as evidenced by the latest report from eMarketer showing that “nearly 60% of ad agency professionals said they were fearful about the inventory quality available when engaging in programmatic buys.” That number is up from 48% in May 2015. So, what’s happening with programmatic ad fraud?

Real time bidding was the first in a series of developments that revolutionize how advertisers and publishers make decisions about price, placement and audience.

Programmatic direct allows buyers to use existing pipes to buy guaranteed or set price inventory.

If you are a marketer investing in media spend, and you are buying media through programmatic channels there are a few key elements to keep in mind.

It’s important to fully identify needs, use cases and KPIs that set you up  for success. If you currently run real time bidding campaigns you should be actively monitoring performance, viewability, fraudulent impression levels and targeted demographic penetration. Advertiser investment teams that don’t actively monitor these key elements will either spend money on irrelevant or unseen impressions, or yet worse decide not to participate in this ecosystem altogether. Those marketers that choose the latter will fall behind, hand over IP to vendor partners, give away margin, miss brand building and customer acquisition opportunities and refuse to ingest tactical data that makes them both smarter and more competitive.

Like in our lives, and business, in advertising there are imperfections and malevolent actors. Some people reading these articles will use it to argue that programmatic is fundamentally flawed. It’s not. Programmatic advertising is fundamentally human, ironically.

Technology creates new opportunities for good and new opportunities for bad. Astute participant in life, in business and in advertising will adapt to the circumstance they are placed in. They will capitalize on the opportunity and maybe in the process work to make the environment better.

The best marketers are using tools to identify the best mix of technologies and services to drive the best ROI, mix data, reach audiences at scale, white list sites, use solutions to find viewable impressions and push aside bad impressions. They use tools to prevent programmatic ad fraud, which we’ll cover in tomorrow’s post.

If you don’t tackle these challenges you can still diversify your marketing with unique data sets, traditional media, email marketing, call centers, social media, influencers or rely heavily on closed wall ecosystems like Facebook. But if you want to use digital paid media (and increasingly traditional media as it is becoming digital) to achieve business goals you must figure out the right mix of programmatic solutions that work for your enterprise this quarter. Then do the same next quarter and the quarter after that. Those who don’t will hand over share to their competitors.

In tomorrow’s post we’ll talk about specific ways to reduce fraud, improve viewability and ensure brand safety.

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Robert Brill

Robert is the CEO of BrillMedia.co, host of the LA Business Podcast, and host of The Great Reset on YouTube.

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