Global Head of Display, James Bourner looks at the latest developments in the world of Programmatic Display.
Native ads, it's a display ad format, but really it's a catch-all term. What we really mean by native is an ad format unit that fits seamlessly into its surroundings, or relates specifically to the content that it's being served against. Now, in Programmatic, that's always been a bit of a problem because we tend to buy over vast sets of websites, many different pages, many different apps, and we have a variety of places we're gonna serve. So unifying a native advert doesn't really go together.
However, what we do talk about in Programmatic is a particular type of native advert, which is a combination of text and imagery which can be manipulated and changed so it can fit into many more surroundings a lot more seamlessly than just a chunk of image or a typical banner ad. And that's what we typically mean when we're talking about native advertising within Programmatic Display. Of course, native advertising for the old school can be an advertorial, because that's one thing we all know and love, and that can have a journalistic element. But really, we're talking about a sort of in-feed style display, native formats.
So, one thing that's involved in Programmatic is the way that you can actually buy media, the types of deals. In previous videos we've spoken about open-exchange buying which, I think, everybody knows. We've spoken about private marketplace, which can't be about 30% of Programmatic advertising is bought through private marketplaces. Private marketplaces are fantastic. They allow more control to the buyer, they allow us to specify what we want to buy on publisher's sites, whether that's audience or placement, and Programmatic guaranteed is really an extension of that and it actually gets really close to reservation IO-based buying that, actually, we all know and love from the past.
Now, it might not be immediately obvious why you'd want to replicate an IO-buy through a demand-site platform. But, actually, there's a few things that...there's a few advantages of doing that. First and foremost is workflow, it's easier to do things in one platform if you can. But, second of all is, actually, you can start to bring some of your first-party data to the party, which means that you can still execute a reservation buy - you might still have a volume guarantee attached to that, it might have a fixed price - so all those Programmatic parts have kind of gone. But, you can suppress people that you know, your customers, or treat them slightly differently or do something like that. So you can still benefit from the media efficiencies that Programmatic is famous for.
Programmatic, as we all know, has grown ridiculously quickly over the past five, six, seven years, since we've started playing around with this new technology, this protocol for delivering adverts; not a channel, by the way. And one thing that we started to really see extend that growth is the ingestation of more and more formats like the native placements that we've spoken about. But also, you know, it's Programmatic, it means server-to-server integrations, allowing machines to talk to each other to make transactions and make data transfer more effective. And actually, what we're starting to see is more and more players coming to the market, opening up their APIs, and allowing Programmatic buying technologies to work with their data, or to work with their inventory. So we're gonna see growth through application, in that sense, we'll see growth through formats like the native ones we've mentioned.
But, the missing piece of the puzzle from a lot of Programmatic, and it's been impressed quite a lot, is the creative element. We need great creative narrative, we need great creative executions. Programmatic's a fantastic way to throw a lot of banners at a website but, really, that's not really working for us as an industry at this time. So, the new tools that we're seeing from people like DoubleClick allowing us to do better creative executions are really gonna be the fuel that keeps Programmatic's fire burning.