Programmatic Predictions for 2015

Last year I wrote about my five predictions for real-time bidding (RTB) in and what a year it has been! The ever-changing nature of the digital industry is heightened in the highly dynamic and fast-growing programmatic and real-time bidding (RTB) space. Programmatic buys including rich media, social, video, and the private marketplace (PMP) all saw massive growth in 2014. Publisher and advertiser attitudes have shifted and programmatic has become the darling of the digital space.

After such a massive year, what can we expect to be the most important features in the programmatic industry for 2015? My top five predictions are as follows.

1. Dynamic Creative

In 2015, all display ads should be built in HTML5 and have dynamic capabilities. Dynamic creative is essential for driving increased performance within programmatic. A few things marketers should consider for 2015:

  • Build all display ads with the ability to quickly change messaging via a dynamic feed. This will save hours of time on re-trafficking ads and allow for flexible promotional changes.
  • Dynamic remarketing is not just limited to ecommerce; any campaign can be improved when ads are adapted to users based on previous on-site behavior.
  • Audience segmentation with dynamic creative is the most powerful combination for the most relevant messaging to key audiences.
  • All ads should be built in HTML5 in order to be served across devices for maximum exposure.
  • Find a partner or in house team with both creative and technical skills in order to bridge the gap between design and functionality.

2. Attribution

Attribution has been a hot topic in 2014, and next year advertisers will be investing even more to understand the full value of their marketing activity. There is no “right” way to attribute value to different channels, but using insights gleaned from multi-channel and post-view conversion analysis is worth investing time and resource to, next year and beyond.

3. Viewability

Another 2014 buzzword, using viewability to measure the percentage of viewable ads is going to continue to be a top priority for advertisers in 2015. Demand-side platforms (DSPs) and ad serving technologies will continue to invest in making viewability a key metric, and publishers will have increased pressure to serve viewable ads. This is already a game-changer, and the greater advertisers have in to what impact viewability has on performance, the more the rest of the industry will have to change to meet their expectations.

4. Transparency

Transparency is another advertiser-led initiative that is growing in importance within the programmatic space. Historically there has widely been an approach of arbitrage within the display industry, but advertisers are becoming increasingly aware of this issue and demanding transparency from agencies and publishers. Advertisers can achieve outstanding direct response results from RTB campaigns, and have the best chance of doing so when they pay a fair and uninflated cost for inventory.

5. Audience Focus

2015 will definitely be the year that audience becomes the heart of all digital advertising. Alignment of CRM data, first-, and third-party audiences with both search and display is on the rise and becoming easier for advertisers. Brands will be investing in data management platforms (DMPs) in order to have more ownership and organisation over their data. Customer insights from display campaigns and on-site analytics will be merging more next year in order to capitalize on the much sought-after goal of reaching “the right audience, at the right time.”

Prepare for another incredible year for programmatic display in 2015…It’s the key area within digital marketing set to reach new heights.

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