Know How to Preserve the Benefits of Programmatic Marketing

Programmatic marketing has proved its relevance for advertisers and its value for publishers.

Some tips can help protect it from miscalculations!

If automated methods of buying and distributing advertising campaigns have become the norm, it is because they give many advantages that traditional over-the-counter market cannot offer to the actors of the ecosystem. Audience targeting is efficient, coverage is full, media buying takes place in real time and at the best price, the message is precise thanks to personalisation, the user experience is preserved by a global control of the repetition of the message.

Such a virtuosity is not immune to erroneous calculations, bad practices or false good ideas, but they can be avoided, corrected or eliminated. From defining your objectives to the activation and measurement of your campaigns on ad exchanges, here are some tips to help you preserve all the advantages of programmatic marketing.

Goals and KPIs: Be Precise

This is a very common error that does not only apply to the programmatic environment but has equally negative consequences: the definition of unclear campaign goals and the choice of inappropriate Key Performance Indicators (KPIs). Each campaign must meet a list of priorities, and each priority must match a precisely selected KPI.

Thus, in the context of acquisition campaigns, if you aim to maximise your turnover with a ‘conquest plus retargeting’ activation type, you have to be interested in ROI; if the objective is to recruit new customers, it will be relevant to look at the acquisition cost. In a completely different register, when one wishes to develop brand awareness, for example through a branding campaign using high-impact formats, such as packaging or video, it is the KPI of visibility, exposure duration per Internet user, target coverage or commitment with the format that will have to be studied.

Fraud: It’s Totally Preventable!

Fraud is a widespread practice in programmatic media buying. In France, some service providers estimate the rate of fraudulent ad impressions at over 18% on display campaigns not optimised by market verification tools. However, most fraudulent practices can be easily foiled and kept below the 1% threshold, thanks to relatively simple trading mechanisms. These measures include checking campaign geolocation, regularly auditing diffusion inventories, updating comprehensive black lists of inappropriate sites and critically analysing click rates to ensure they are consistent with market averages, not to mention using third-party fraud prevention solutions.

Fully Understand Audience Planning

One of the main promises of programmatic marketing is to enable advertisers to address the right audience, by selecting specific profiles segments based on their browsing history, at the right time and in the right place. This is called audience planning, which now replaces media planning. The concern is that some professionals, under the influence of habits inherited from the over-the-counter market, persist in reasoning in terms of site to site purchasing. This logic is no longer valid in a targeting strategy combining both reach and segmentation. This ‘ensilage’ leads to a considerable loss of flexibility in campaign management and scripting.

In addition, it is possible to evaluate the relevance of targeting strategies deployed in audience planning, by studying the target coverage of each campaign after they are broadcasted.

Assessing the Value of Third Party Data

Contrary to popular belief, it is not at all certain that buying third party data is a profitable strategy. Above all, it is essential to know if the extra cost generated by the third party data acquisition allows to reach a level of performance efficient enough to absorb it. In the context of acquisition campaigns, it is indeed common that the data does not offer a sufficient transformation rate to compensate for the extra cost it represents.

The purchase of third party data can be relevant within the framework of a branding campaign aimed for the coverage of a predefined target. But even in this case, particular attention must be paid to the quality of the data, and especially not be limited to the basic socio-demographic segments, such as age or sex, otherwise this strategy will not be profitable.

Private Deal vs Open Auction

It is commonly said that the device considered the safest on marketplaces is private deal. This seems logical, since private deal guarantee the buyer either a fixed price, a URL or other pre-negotiated conditions. But in doing so, we forget the golden rule of programmatic marketing which consists in … testing! Before closing the perimeter, it is necessary to test all the potentialities offered by open exchanges. The more the advertiser learns by testing each strategy, the more he will be able to demand convincing feedback from his service providers.

Capping: The Right Measure

One of the main advantages of programmatic is to allow control of the scripting and the repetition of the message through all the channels and devices to which the Internet user is connected. The success of the campaign lies in the right balance between sufficient repetition to ensure visibility and compliance to preserve the brand image and the users’navigation.

Knowing How to Go Beyond Visibility

Advertisers often believe they are doing the right thing when they require maximum visibility for their impressions. Doing so, they disregard the fact that it can be very harmful for their campaigns, particularly when they follow a ROI logic. By requiring a visibility rate above the market average, an advertiser runs the risk of overpaying his impressions. A better approach is to capitalize on a maximum volume of visible impressions, even if it means buying non-visible impressions. Combined with the mastery of repetition on visible impressions, that allows the advertiser to pilot its campaigns on KPIs integrating the notion of visibility, such as vCPM, vCPA and vCPL. This strategy can also enhance the value of the impression, if not the click, on display campaigns. The fact that 9 out of 10 Internet users say they never click on banners does not mean they are not exposed to the message.


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