How to be programmatically awesome

Blog Posts 09 Mar, 2018

Digital Marketers are increasingly adopting an omnichannel advertising approach to engage with their audiences, with the aim to, hopefully, drive better results.

In recent years, Programmatic has been key to transform Marketing leaders’ minds who have started embracing a data-driven approach to make more informed media buying decisions. Programmatic is not just a (not so) new, more efficient and more targeted way to reach the right audiences at scale but its audience-centric approach should be sitting at the heart of any brand’s digital strategy. It’s worth bearing in mind that all digital channels are nowadays ‘programmatic’ as opposed to ‘manual’, including Social Media and Search. Did you really think Display was the only RTB thing around here?

The progression is unstoppable, with a forecasted Programmatic ad spending of 90% of all digital spending by 2019 in the UK, it seems to be a no brainer to think that other, more traditional media, will follow shortly (TV and Radio mainly).

Display and Video 360, Google’s demand side platform (DSP) offers agencies, Trading Desks, and advertisers access to the world’s most exclusive collection of display, video, native and mobile inventory available in real-time.

Top 4 factors that make Display and Video 360 a top-notch DSP

1. Advanced Audience Targeting

Yes, we all know Google’s audience data is great. Google uses a 100% Deterministic approach when it comes to cross-device user recognition and gathers anonymised user behaviour from multiple sources such as Gmail, Google Maps, Google Play, YouTube and your Search history amongst other things. The good news is that this data is available to all advertisers for free (as long as you pay the license to use the platform of course!) but don’t forget about your most powerful weapon, your own 1st party Data.

Want to get the most out of your data? Keep reading.

Implement floodlight activity pixels on your website to track conversions and events and create audience lists based on your most valuable customers. Combine it with Google Audiences to make your own Look Alike audiences for both Remarketing and Negative Remarketing.

Import Audiences from your Google Ads lists, YouTube Channel and Analytics 360 into Display and Video 360. Make more sophisticated re-marketing lists based on users who have clicked on your PPC ads, seen/liked your TrueView ads or subscribed to your brand’s videos on YouTube. Additionally, thanks to its native integration with Analytics 360, create powerful audience lists based on user behaviour happening within your website and specific events and metrics, such as time on site, viewed pages, bounce rate, etc.

2. Access to Premium Inventory and Video Exchanges

What about Reach? Display and Video 360 has access to more than 100 Ad Exchanges and includes approx. 1 billion websites. You can gain access to PMPs, an invitation-only RTB auction where one publisher or a group of select publishers invite specific buyers to bid on inventory. Also, buy through Programmatic Direct which differs from real-time bidding in that it is a guaranteed-buy rather than an auction like RTB. Publishers and advertisers are adopting programmatic direct because it allows for premium purchases to be conducted programmatically rather than through the traditional method of direct ad buys. Google is constantly monitoring the quality of these websites and over the years they have blacklisted thousands of URLs thanks to its built-in pre-bid and post-bid verification tools.

Another cool thing about Display and Video 360 is that is the only DSP in the market able to buy TrueView inventory (TrueView in-stream, discovery ads and bumpers ads), which means full access to YouTube audiences. We are also starting to see more and more full-episode TV programmatically in Display and Video 360 from across the web.

3. The integrations within Google Marketing Platform

More on data, we just love it. If you worked with the platform when it was known as DoubleClick, you will have noticed the amount of data that is constantly being gathered about your campaign.

So, what is the real benefit of Google Marketing Platform?

The answer is simple: Data belonging to a single unified ecosystem.

We have already talked briefly about the potential of creating audiences in Analytics 360, the tool allows you to create more than 250 different variables so you can create very sophisticated audience lists. These can get created and pushed to Display and Video 360 in only a matter of hours and thereafter they are refreshed in real time.

And let’s not forget about Attribution. A holistic, cross-channel view of what’s driving your marketing performance is key to understanding how to value each customer touchpoint.

The Attribution model in Display and Video 360 is based on the last event registered, which means it is based on information coming from Display only, and is not considering the other digital channels that are not tracked. Analytics 360 algorithmically gives credit to different channels (for example, maybe your paid ads might end up being more valuable in certain conversion path). You can even create your own custom attribution models based on this, where you can assign more credit to what you feel might be a more valuable channel.

In summary, it is possible to follow the user’s path after seeing an ad, hasn’t clicked on it but has visited your website using other channels. Without the integrations within Google Marketing Platform, this click would be credited to SEO, but with it, it is associated to the banner. Therefore, the value of those impressions is closer to reality.

4. Transparency & Brand Safety

Run campaigns in a fully transparent manner, know exactly who you are targeting and how much it costs (am I using 3rd party data from an external DMP or my free-of-charge 1st party or Google Audiences data), know exactly where your ads are running and how much you are paying for your campaign.

The business model operates on a self-service approach so you have full control of your Programmatic campaigns. Google Marketing Platform comes packed with built-in industry-leading fraud protection, Verification and Viewability tools (Active View). You can have control and filter at keyword, page and site level but if you need to have an additional layer of control you can easily plug in 3rd party Brand Safety and Verification tools such as DoubleVerify, MOAT or Integral Ad Science.

If you want to learn the ins and outs of Display and Video 360 and the rest of the tools comprising the Google Marketing Platform, check out our range of Google Marketing Platform courses.

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