Adding Context to Omnichannel Advertising

Published on August 19, 2020
blog, insights, podcast

In This Episode, We Discuss:

  • How recent events, especially the COVID-19 pandemic, have had a profound impact on the customer journey.
  • The future of ID targeting for our industry after big moves by Google and Apple.
  • Why an omnichannel approach to reaching customers is more important than ever.
  • How contextual advertising will evolve for newer “text-less” programmatic channels such as audio and video.
  • The data, media, tools, and tactics needed to ensure the relevance of advertising. 
  • How contextual and gaming will work together to spark new approaches, and the measurement challenges in in-game advertising.
  • What’s exciting us about tech and digital for the next few years.

Show Highlights

The complex content of brand safety

“What the pandemic did was really highlight that the need for brand suitability went beyond just blocking things around coronavirus.” 
― Derek Wise

Cecile agrees, stressing the value of a balanced approach.

“I think every marketer recognizes the importance of making sure that those publishers providing that quality journalism get the funding that they need through ads, while at the same time, markets also need to balance the need for brand safety and suitability.”
Cecile Blanc

Derek asserts that advertisers will benefit from a more nuanced approach to brand safety --  and that tremendous progress has been made in our ability to execute that.
He gives gives examples of legitimate words and subjects — such as “gay” and “lesbian” and conversations about ethnicities — being blocked as part of some brands’ misguided efforts to avoid controversial content. 
Instead, Derek advises limiting reliance on keywords in favor of richer levels of contextual understanding.

“We have people that block the word 'shot' all the time. What they really meant to block is things around death and injury and firearms-related content. They accidentally ended up blocking anything around football, basketball, golf, pharmaceutical research.”
― Derek Wise

Omnichannel is everywhere in 2020

“Consumption variables have changed pretty significantly,” Wise says, discussing the COVID-19 pandemic’s impact on the consumer journey. “The types of industries that were spending and what the targeting was around changed fairly dramatically.”
Derek and Cecile agree that omnichannel strategies can enable advertisers to adapt to the quickly evolving customer journey, making them more essential -- and effective -- now than ever.

“Being able to really measure the effectiveness of your campaign across all the channels is what we’re starting to see really drive change in behavior from an advertiser’s perspective.”
Derek Wise

Contextual goes beyond text

Cecile and Derek also discuss some of the newer technologies and tactics that have enabled contextual targeting to become a powerful tool for advertisers -- even for “text-less” media like video and audio.

“The goal is to bring it all together into a seamless, multicontextual offering where it really doesn’t matter what the media is.”
― Derek Wise

Measuring the growth of gaming

In-game advertising a relatively nascent format that comes with fresh challenges for advertisers.

Cecile’s Global Solutions Team at Xaxis is helping spearhead initiatives to advance the capabilities of in-game advertising. She asked Derek, who has has experience in both game development and in in-game advertising, about how it factors into the ad game today. 

One of the challenges, Derek notes, is cultivating a consistent consensus on measurement standards. He recognizes the value of the standard taxonomy defined by the IAB, but says we still have some ground to cover in fully defining the value of things, like “what is valid and viewable in a 3D racecar game when the sign is flying by.”  Because, understandably “there are lots of brands and agencies that are very, very particular about what's valid and viewable and counting those impressions.”

Cecile agrees, noting the similarities to another dynamic format: “Thinking about foot traffic a bit like we're doing with digital out of home (DOOH). So what is the angle that it's going to be seeing? How long is it going to be in view?”

Cécile Blanc leads the Global Solutions and Innovation team at Xaxis. She focuses on building and deploying business development initiatives to grow and diversify Xaxis revenues, opening new programmatic channels such as DOOH and rolling out innovative offerings to attract new clients.  She launched the Xcellerate program in 2017 to identify, incubate and deploy innovative solutions globally.

Derek Wise is Chief Product Officer at Oracle Data Cloud, where he leads product management for a full stack of solutions inclusive of Audiences, Contextual Intelligence, and Measurement. He is a technologist at heart with a passion for people and process management.

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