Highlights from AdExchanger’s Programmatic I/O
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Highlights from AdExchanger’s Programmatic I/O

At this year’s Programmatic I/O conference in NYC, the AdExchanger team curated a special lineup of ad tech companies, industry insiders, vendors, agencies, and media buyers to tackle the future of the programmatic landscape. The conference featured sessions, panels, Q&As, fireside chats, and in-depth discussions on supply path, inventory, cookie deprecation, privacy, and Connected TV (CTV). With highly engaging conversations that were relevant to advertisers, agencies, publishers, and all the functions in between, here’s what we found:

More Supply Path Transparency

Jill Wittkopp, VP of Product from IAB Tech Lab gave an overview of ads.txt version 1.1. This latest update from IAB will help the industry programmatically validate their Authorized Digital Sellers or ads.txt and sellers.json files, both of which are mechanisms to improve transparency in the programmatic ecosystem. The update includes the new fields ‘Ownerdomain’ and ‘Managerdomain.’

Another update came from The Trade Desk, who has pledged to identify the most efficient supply path to inventory with new features in their Demand Side Platform or DSP, such as ‘OpenPath.’ OpenPath allows publishers to integrate with The Trade Desk, allowing advertisers to gain direct access to advertising impressions created by publishers. This update targets inefficiencies in the programmatic supply chain, advancing transparency and competition in an open market.

Lauren Fisher, VP of Business Intelligence at Advertiser Perceptions has seen an uptick in buyers working directly with supply side platforms and publishers working directly with demand side platforms. According to Fisher, “76% of programmatic buyers are transacting via Programmatic Guaranteed or Private Marketplace, generating 60% of programmatic publisher revenue.”

Not only is supply path transparency good for marketers and advertisers, but it’s also good for the planet. Brian O’Kelley, Co-founder and CEO of Scope 3 explains, “The more unnecessary bids we remove from the supply chain, the fewer servers are involved; meaning, we lower our carbon footprint on the planet.” According to O’Kelley, we must reallocate budgets from high-carbon inventory to low-carbon supply.

As Butler/Till is a proud certified B Corporation, we pay strict attention to our impact on people, planet, and profit. This means we are at the forefront of transparency in advertising to combat advertising bias, support sustainable marketing efforts, and be advocates for these causes. At the root of those efforts is transparency–in communication, in business, in strategy, in partnerships, and in all major enterprise decision-making moments.

Inventory Quality Matters

Made-for-advertising or MFA is a combination of paid traffic and other incentivized traffic engineered to create ad impressions and generate revenue. MFA sites continue to be a concern in the programmatic space as they often meet IAB standards, but in most cases fail to add real value.

MFA sites offer different user ad experiences based on how the user was referred to the site. For example, if a user is referred to a site via native and paid social sponsorships, then that user would see more ads on the page.

Chris Kane, Founder of Jounce Media says, “Media Buyers need to audit which supplier chain has the shortest distance between buyer and seller.”

Dr. Krzysztof Franaszek of Adalytics states, “The only way to have transparency and visibility into the supply chain is by having your own independent source of truth via log files.” According to Dr. Franaszek, log files allow you to check if your brand safety vendor is correctly detecting domain spoofing and exclusion list violations–making it easier for you to detect nuances in your campaigns.

Privacy and the Cookieless Future

StackAdapt, a self-serve programmatic advertising platform, presented its three contextual solutions and the best use case for each:

  • Contextual AI
  • Hyper Managed
  • AI-assisted

According to StackAdapt, Contextual AI outperformed retargeting 22% of the time out of 1,000 campaigns, cutting cost per action or CPA.

René Plug, VP of Corporate Development at TripleLift says, “Today, nearly 50% of all ad requests do not have an identified user on the open web.” That means lost revenue for publishers and missed KPIs for advertisers.

Sarah Polli, Sr. Director of Marketing Technology at Hearts & Science noted that when people say, “I’m not impacted by the cookieless future,” you should be cautious as everyone is impacted by a cookieless world. According to Polli, Safari and non-cookie-based environments saw 41% more impressions and 45% cheaper CPAs in 2022.

Rashida Richardson, Attorney Advisor to Chair Lina Khan at the Federal Trade Commission or FTC, talked about the general interest to pass federal legislation when it comes to data privacy. Richardson highlighted the latest interest in maintaining sensitive information privacy–including geolocation data.

META plans to adopt Secure Multi-Party Computation or MPC as a way to deliver more highly targeted relevant ads, but in a privacy-safe way. MPC will enable businesses to buy encrypted and unintelligible data so that people’s personal data remains private, while still allowing collaboration between publishers, platforms, and advertisers.

Up to Speed with CTV

Kelly Abcarian, EVP of Measurement and Impact at NBCUniversal states, “All TV will eventually be bought programmatically. We are no longer measuring who is watching the screen, but rather who is in the household.” The need for more transparent placement-level data was also discussed.

As we prepare for 2023 and beyond, excitement continues to build around newer technology like Automatic Content Recognition or ACR to gain access to viewer data. ACR technology is built into smart TVs that is used to identify and track everything the viewer watches. As smart TVs with ACR tech finally reaches scale, advertisers can unlock new possibilities in targeting and utilize ACR data during campaign planning.

The programmatic ecosystem is bursting with evolutions in transparency, audience insights, privacy, and technology in our increasingly competitive and complex industry. At Butler/Till, our experts are equipped with the latest technology and strategic partnerships that are focused on results and achieving transformational business impact for our clients. Our clients’ success is our success.

To learn more or to chat with our experts, contact us today!

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