Originally posted at: Global Times | November 27, 2018
Say you’re planning your winter holiday and still looking for a hotel or airline. Just as you are about to make a decision, you notice an ad that offers you the right deal at the right moment. You click it and make your reservation.
“Programmatic” advertising, which enables this sort of targeted ad, refers to the use of software, data and technology in digital advertising, as opposed to the traditional process that relies on people-to-people decisions and negotiations.
Simply put, it is a way to help advertisers get the right message at just the right moment and to the right audience. It can leverage criteria such as location, age, gender and social standing of the targeted audience, resulting in an efficient and optimized advertising campaign for brands and a more relevant and useful experience for consumers.
Though today’s netizens are far more reluctant to click on online ads, programmatic advertising can help change subconscious consumption behaviors in a mutual beneficial way for both the advertisers and the target consumers.
So says Nicolas Bidon, Global CEO of the outcome media company Xaxis, which offers managed programmatic services in 47 global markets, including North America, Europe, Asia Pacific, Latin America, the Middle East and Africa.
With more than 20 years’ experience in the intersection of data, media and technology, Bidon believes programmatic advertising is the future of online marketing. The real challenge, however, will be eliminating the complexities of all the technical integrations required to make it easier for advertisers to receive the desired outcomes from their digital media investments.
Positioning your products
As an expert in the field, Bidon sees the advantages of programmatic advertising as a forefront type of digital advertising that can effectively reach audiences, deliver cross channel performances and create the ability to innovate.
“With programmatic, we can help the consumers get the most relevant information and new choices and brands that are relevant to consumers, even if they are niche brands,” he said. “Programmatic advertising allows a lot of new brands to reach their audiences at scale, something that was impossible for challenger and new brands to do before.”
In the US and Europe, Bidon has seen a lot of direct-to-consumer brands such as new fashion and new beauty using programmatic advertising to attract a wider audience.
“In the past, if you were building a new beauty brand in France, for example, it would be impossible for you to easily reach new audiences at scale in China or the US for instance. But now with programmatic, you can easily reach global audiences at scale, and you can test and learn quickly what works and what doesn’t work, then use those insights to refine your brand positioning and also your products,” Bidon explained.
Currently, however, the adoption of programmatic advertising varies quite significantly from one country to another, but Bidon is confident that online advertising will get increasingly refined everywhere by using programmatic.
“The US and UK markets are leading in terms of adoption of programmatic, with close to 80 percent of digital media bought programmatically. In other words, almost all digital media is now programmatic in these countries,” said Bidon.
In contrast, Bidon feels that there still is space to grow in other global markets. “I think China, for example, is only around 20 percent programmatic. But if you look at Mexico, I think it is only 40 percent. I believe however that programmatic will eventually be at the kind of level we are seeing in the US and the UK everywhere around the world, so around 80 percent or so,” he said.
With the rapid development of the programmatic advertising market comes other challenges. Tech is changing fast, and the media landscape is still very fragmented, which creates potentially even more complexity in terms of a technical integration. Being able to eliminate these complexities, as well as combating issues such as fraud, are among the major challenges Bidon sees in the industry.