Programmatic advertising is characterized by automating the processes related to showing ads in digital channels. A large part of programmatic advertising is the automated buying and selling of ad space through real-time bidding. Whereas online advertising started out with companies buying ad space on a per-website basis, it is now possible to accurately target one’s target audience in the most effective channels through programmatic advertising. In short, it lets you advertise through a joint force of data science, automation, and machine learning.
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A key aspect of programmatic advertising is real-time bidding. Pairing advertiser preferences with available ad space will allow companies to show their ads to the most relevant internet users in a very efficient manner. With the number of websites to advertise on and the vast amount of companies looking to do so, it is crucial to have a strategy that optimizes where your ads are shown.
Advertisers use demand-side platforms (DSP) to manage their ad campaigns, where they can specify a wide range of parameters that will decide who is shown the ad and when. Website owners, on the other hand, use supply-side platforms (SSP) to decide what will be shown on their website. In the time it takes a browser to load a webpage, the SSP will announce a vacant ad space, and DSPs will look at their advertisers’ preferences to find and present the relevant ones. Out of the ads suited for the ad space and user in question, the advertiser willing to pay the most is the one whose ad is shown.
Another advantage of the automation between DSPs and SSPs is privacy. User privacy is of increasing importance to consumers and companies alike. With the increasing efforts against third-party cookies, ad vendors have to rely on other means of figuring out which ads are the most relevant to what browsing sessions. Data-learning in DSPs and SSPs will inevitably make it easier for advertisers to accurately guess which users are most interested in what offerings with less personal information available. This will further muddle the waters for smaller advertisers and ad vendors, who will have to rely on partnerships with larger actors possessing more first-hand data.
Correct execution of programmatic advertising allows companies to only show their ads to an audience for which their products and services are relevant. This is a cornerstone of Pull Marketing, wherein marketing communications is targeted towards individuals who have expressed interest in your products/services. Programmatic allows you to target these individuals, but also those who are likely to be similarly interested in your offering. For optimal results, the ad management needs to be continuously updated to ensure that your targeting is consistent with your clients’ purchasing patterns.
Narrowing down the target market of your marketing communications will greatly improve the campaigns’ conversion rate, as well as being more financially efficient. Manual targeting might allow advertisers to show their ads for a select number of websites at specific times. On the other hand, programmatic advertising allows for a more true people-based marketing, as more factors can be accounted for. Combine this with real-time bidding and it is hard to argue for a non-programmatic approach in one’s online advertising.
We have managed the programmatic advertising for large organizations and small local companies with great results. Adding programmatic advertising to a data-driven digital marketing strategy can significantly increase the ROI and directly contribute to the B2B lead generation.
While more often talked about in a B2C context, programmatic advertising is likewise an effective approach to B2B marketing. It can for instance be used as a push marketing tool to target C-suite individuals and increase awareness among decision-makers. Programmatic can also be a highly effective tool for tasks like recruitment and talent acquisition. By effectively targeting a narrow audience, it is possible to reach B2B decision-makers in highly relevant companies.