It’s time to pull your head out of the sand, because the future looks very promising for CMOs investing in programmatic ad buying, writes Phil Guest, senior vice president at UK-based programmatic marketplace, The Exchange Lab.
Programmatic merely means automated. So programmatic buying is an automated media buying technique that is replacing the human method.
With an accelerated rate of market adoption, coupled with speed of learning, early predictions suggest CMOs are adopting programmatic far sooner than original forecasts. Today, programmatic appears on nearly every single media plan, although there is still a great deal of education required at the marketer level caused in part by industry fragmentation and an understanding of what can be achieved.
Some see programmatic as the answer to all their problems and set unrealistic goals, yet it is those who understand the need to test and learn, while remaining flexible, who position themselves best to reap the rewards from programmatic efficiencies. The key to success is for marketers to find partners that can help them navigate what, at first glance, appears to be a complex world of new technologies and supplier interrelations: all of which are shrouded in an alien language of new acronyms. The reality is, once you have a high level understanding of the programmatic ecosystem, it’s much easier to peel back the layers around specific elements that matter to your business. Before you know it you will be fluent in that new language whilst improving the efficiency of your digital marketing communications, making limited budgets work that much harder.
It is important for CMOs to understand that programmatic is merely another tool in the marketing tool kit, used as part of a complete integrated communications strategy. It demands more than a single line on the marketing plan these days – today contributing to brand engagement, consumer development, audience insights, customer targeting, nurturing and finding new customers through lookalike modeling. However, it’s important to remember that effective branding lies in connecting the consumer with the right message at the right time.
This is where programmatic excels and acts as the connective tissue, often workng as the initiator for brand engagement and ultimately the sales process. Many brands are starting to experience this first hand and with outdoor, cinema and connected TV; digital trading will continue to extend to cover the entire marketing communications suite.
The potential for brands investing in programmatic is enormous and data companies are leading the charge. Oracle is in the process of hiring as many as 1,000 new representatives across the Asia-Pacific and IBM is investing in infrastructure with a new data centre in Australia. This can only be a good thing for marketers and is a clear indication that demand for data-led marketing continues to be on the rise.
Phil Guest joined The Exchange Lab as VP International in November 2013 and in December 2014 became Senior VP International. His main role is to lead the international expansion of The Exchange Lab’s business to meet the growing demand for a customer- centric, multi-platform, programmatic trading solution.