It seems like everywhere you turn in the advertising industry, people are talking about programmatic. And for good reason. The numbers are worth talking about. An estimated 82.5% of US digital display ads will be bought programmatically in 2018, according to eMarketer’s 2018 programmatic forecast. That’s more than $46 billion. And that’s about $10 billion more than in 2017. That same forecast shows that by 2020, 86.2% of US digital display ads will be bought programmatically. That’s a spend of more than $65 billion.
Over the last 10 years, as more than 60% of the U.S. digital advertising market has moved to Facebook and Google, publishers have continued to open more and more inventory up to programmatic channels in order to capture as much of the remaining 40% of ad spend as possible. As open auctions became more prevalent in the industry, the onslaught of banners with seemingly zero targeting or contextual relevance became commonplace. So while this push to programmatic brought efficiency and reach for publishers and brands alike, it introduced a couple of major challenges for publishers and publisher sell-side platforms: ad quality control and commoditization of valuable inventory.
But this is where Celtra believes the game can be changed. It’s time to reimagine what programmatic advertising looks like across digital and bring life back to advertising.
If programmatic is the new standard in today’s digital advertising, we have an obligation to create premium advertising experiences for consumers within programmatic environments. We should no longer see standard banner placements as just the standard. It’s time to open our eyes to much bigger and more innovative programmatic strategies and create captivating experiences that will reach people.
And creative is at the center of this, of course.
We know that an advertiser has less time than ever to reach a consumer in a creative way and take market share back. This means it’s even more important to combine the benefits of programmatic (think: efficiency and reach) with quality creative advertising experiences. In a study Celtra did with Digiday in 2015 on “The State of the Industry”, we found that 92% of marketers said creative messaging is more important than ever, even within digital display ads. So imagine that number going into 2019. Out with the simple JPEG, in with the technology-enabled premium placements.
We believe that beautiful and innovative creative can be delivered in a programmatic way, without losing any of its impactful messaging — ultimately unlocking better monetization of what was once a commoditized spot on the page. Every advertiser is in the user experience business and creating quality programmatic experiences for consumers will be a huge step forward for the consumer and the industry as a whole.
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