Category Archives: Digital Media

Private marketplace deals in programmatic media buying

Private marketplace deals, or PMPs for short, are inventory deals that buyers can conclude with sellers through SSPs to guarantee access for the buyers to a certain type of inventory programmatically. A few years ago, PMPs were touted as a way that could replace direct publisher sales and in many cases this has happened; for standard display banner formats, buyers often have deals set up with publishers that allows them to activate on that publisher’s inventory without having to go through the publisher’s sales people, freeing up those sales people to work on more advanced ad executions.

All the buyer and seller have to do is conclude the deal and set it up – sometimes easier said than done. The deal  can then remain available to the buyer as a doorway to that publisher’s inventory. This bring a lot of efficiency to buyers and sellers while maintaining publisher control of who is buying inventory on their properties, something that open auction buys are notoriously bad at. Continue reading Private marketplace deals in programmatic media buying

Prospecting and Remarketing in programmatic: How to make use of them [Part 2]

This is the sequel to part 1. Make sure you start with part 1 if you haven’t read it.

If part 1 of the series, we covered off the on the 2 basic types of targeting settings in a programmatic campaign –  prospecting and remarketing. We then covered off 4 targeting settings within prospecting.

In this part, we will cover off some more prospecting targeting settings.

Viewability targeting: 

Viewability targeting allows you to target your ads in such a way that allows them to be in view (on the screen) of the user when served. The MRC definition of viewability is 50% of the ad in view for a minimum of 1 second for display banners and 2 seconds for video (more on video later). This means that at least 50% of a display banner needs to be in-view on a user’s screen for at least a second for the impression to be considered view-able. Continue reading Prospecting and Remarketing in programmatic: How to make use of them [Part 2]

Prospecting and Remarketing in programmatic: How to make use of them [Part 1]

Programmatic campaigns are often divided into two main types of tactics:

  1. Prospecting: Line items that do not use 1st party data.
  2. Remarketing: Line items that use 1st party site visitor audience data

Those 2 bits combined are also known as “the funnel”. Prospecting has the broader audience with tactics that vary from geo targeting to 3rd party data, and as you go down the funnel, the audience should get smaller but more qualified and relevant. Each of those tactics aims to fulfill a goal in a programmatic campaign though. Even though the bottom part of the funnel tends to perform better, a parts of the funnel equally important. Prospecting helps you bring new customers into the funnel, prospecting helps you find relevant audiences and remarketing helps you reach users that have already engaged with your products/services.

Each part of the funnel can (and should) contain multiple line items in your DSP.

This series will cover these tactics, going down the interest funnel. Continue reading Prospecting and Remarketing in programmatic: How to make use of them [Part 1]

How to set up an efficient programmatic campaign

Every programmatic campaign is different. That’s because each campaign can have a different KPI and business goal. Regardless, there are some best practices that I find work for any programmatic campaign.

This post aims to address the phase from planning the campaign up to going live on a DSP. Optimization and reporting will get their own posts.

1.Set a goal, represented by a KPI if possible

Every marketing campaign should have a goal. That goal could be lead generation, branding, sales, traffic to a site, app installs…

If you do not have concrete goals and KPIs, you will not be able to tell if your campaign is performing. You will need both goals AND KPIs. A number of clicks alone is not enough – what do you need those clicks for? Similarely, improving brand awareness alone is not enough – How are you measuring brand awareness? Continue reading How to set up an efficient programmatic campaign

How to read custom site data from the GTM dataLayer

Google Tag Manager(GTM) has some pretty good documentation about how to implement it with Google Analytics and other Google products. However, I wanted to pass some custom site variables directly into GTM and then to feed that data into a custom HTML tag that’s sitting inside the GTM container. I figured I’d outline the solution here in simple terms for all to see.

The Data Flow

Data flow
The data flow as I envisaged it.

GTM offers a simple way to pass custom site data into its container. This is done through the dataLayer object.

The dataLayer is an array that GTM asynchronously reads. Basically, it’s a table with your data as pairs of values.

For example, you want to pass your page category and the type of visitor that’s on the site in to your dataLayer. Continue reading How to read custom site data from the GTM dataLayer

How to use a DMP – technically speaking

DMP this, DMP that
DMP trend
Searches on Google for DMP, source Google trends.

There’s a lot of talk in the market on how a DMP and data driven approach can help marketers better reach their users and how a DMP can provide a better online experience. This talk is normally quite high level though, sticking to the idealistic gains one would hope to achieve by using this tech, so I think it would be interesting to talk in more technical details about how a DMP can improve your business as an advertiser, agency or publisher. In other words, talk about how it actually works rather than just spouting corporate speak about ‘data is good and life is data is life and data and the technology and data…’ Data. What a funny sounding word, data is. Continue reading How to use a DMP – technically speaking

Why have Digital branding’s KPIs stopped evolving?

Digital marketers face an uphill struggle while trying to prove the added value of digital ads (mostly banners in this case) for branding campaigns. The big question that advertisers face these days aside from how many people have seen my ad is has my ad campaign been successful.

To gauge the success of campaigns, we’re still looking at impressions, clicks and CTRs and trying to divine the behavior of humans based on that holy trinity of abstract data.

Without getting too philosophical, I think marketers would do well to read up on cognitive dissonance and confirmation bias.

It basically means that humans are looking to confirm their held beliefs, picking information that is suitable to what they believe in.

It is too inconvenient to reconsider our held beliefs, so we indulge in justifying them rather than thinking too much about things.

Someone clicked an ad for a shampoo? Well well well. Someone’s gonna buy a shampoo tonight.

Car campaign CTR is higher than the benchmark? My god someone call the car factory. We’re going to need a new batch of Veyrons to accommodate that CTR.

It’s the easy way out.

Agencies can be forgiven for not pushing for more in depth KPIs. Sometimes, when trying to look beyond the clicks and CTRs, the client’s reaction is that somehow these two metrics are not on par and all the mumble jumble data like time on site, viewability and reach on target audience are just ways to justify “bad campaigns”

To me, this all seems a little strange. It really makes me wonder how brands investing millions in ad spend still think it’s okay to measure a campaign success by a number of clicks, the cost per click (sometimes even over blind inventory and without any brand safety!) and the CTR.

Instead of clicks, why not time on site? Why not measure recency of visits, % of new visits to the site, the source of the traffic? Why not look at the incremental reach?

Why not look at the number of returning visits from the campaign traffic?

This is a ladder because images help get the point across.

There’s actually a whole science about setting realistic goals, about how goals should be specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and time-targeted (S.M.A.R.T )

First psychology and now management theory. I guess I had better stop now.