Mobile Programmatic Explained


Last year marked a watershed moment for mobile programmatic. In the UK the total proportion of programmatic display ad spending on mobile platforms surpassed desktop’s share for the first time reaching £1.8 billion, according to eMarketer. Moreover, eMarketer forecasts US mobile programmatic ad spending reached $9.33 billion in 2015 and account for 60.5% of total US programmatic display ad spending.

As consumers spend even more time on phones and tablets, mobile programmatic has increasingly come under the spotlight.

Advertisers are becoming ever more interested in reaching millennials through this device, but according to fresh research by the IAB UK, 44% of advertisers don’t understand how mobile programmatic actually works. This statistic came as a complete surprise to me and triggered this post.

As the amount of mobile and tablet inventory that is available to buy programmatically increases, it is a good time to dispel the misconceptions that exist around this technology.

There’s a fallacy that mobile programmatic is cheap and low quality, non-transparent and non-brand safe, but we can assure you that is absolutely not the case anymore and hasn’t been for a good few years.

In fact, as advertisers are demanding increased transparency in media buying and more control and insight into prices, inventory and tactics, it’s crucial to realise that programmatic marketing provides these benefits.

For mobile, as well as any other channels, it’s extremely important to work with a truly transparent DSP, in order to see exactly where your ads run and the price you pay for the media when buying mobile advertising programmatically. This is different from the historic ad network model where impressions were bought in bulk and non-transparent margins were often added on top of the price of media.

The industry has also made very good progress in regards to brand safety. Mobile web inventory, similar to display and video, if traded programmatically within the open exchange, is transparent to domain level and brand safety filters are applied pre-bid, offering brands a safe environment to reach their consumers.

But mobile programmatic is not just about the tech that’s available – it’s also about creativity. To build a truly successful mobile advertising campaign you shouldn’t repurpose your standard ads from other channels. Think about the size of the screen they are to be watched on and take advantage of the functionality of the device to make your user experience as engaging and interactive as possible. Companies such as Celtra can provide agencies and advertisers with a dashboard to build and ad serve engaging rich media and mobile video units. The possibilities are almost endless!

These assets can then be used across all your different programmatic mobile media buys. Completed full-view engagement rates on these units can be up to 10 times higher than what you can achieve on standard display banners which is good news for brands.

To make the most of all programmatic has to offer it’s advisable to resist from buying in silos. Instead, use an omni-channel programmatic vendor in order to get a holistic view of your consumer’s journey. The most successful brands working in programmatic use the learnings and insights from the platform to enhance their media planning and buying efficiency, as well as re-evaluating the media mix and move budgets accordingly.

2016 offers a golden opportunity to take advantage of all mobile programmatic has to offer and there is no reason to hold back.

As the amount of inventory available through this medium continues to rise, it’s a good time to get ahead of the game and strike up a lasting relationship with mobile programmatic.

First published on: Wall Blog