Between 2019 and 2018, the digital advertising market in Vietnam grew by 300% according to studies by eMarketer and Statista, prompting a move by WPP to grow its programmatic media and technology platform in the country. With nearly a third of digital advertising media purchased through programmatic channels, Xaxis acquired talent with a foundation in digital natives.
To grow revenue and attract new customers, Lua Tran was appointed as a director at Xaxis Vietnam in mid-2019, tasked with driving operational excellence through strategic prioritization and accountability. As the pioneer of the first mobile content service in Vietnam, Tran grew a multi-million dollar business within five years, before leading client development at agencies under the Dentsu Aegis Network, Publicis Groupe, and WPP.
Tran told Branding In Asia that Xaxis is managing campaigns with private marketplace deals across demand-side platforms, adding that there is no 100% fool-proof defense against the risks of brand safety.
“Xaxis prioritizes direct programmatic deals with publishers through our Trusted Marketplace (TMP),” said Tran. “This avoids the open ad exchange layer and ensures we have complete control over where ads are running. When Xaxis contracts directly with a publisher, we agree on terms which protect our advertisers from ad copyright infringement, deceptive practices and delivery of viruses/spyware/malware.”
She said that investments are safeguarded against content classified as being packed with violence, profanity, racism, sexism, religion, gambling, pornography, abortion, or any other subject matter that would bring disrepute to the advertiser’s brand. Despite its insistence of being an artificial intelligence-driven technology company, Xaxis only deals with ad exchange sellers on a human level and with those shortlisted & vetted by the internal DSPs. For ad exchanges that are obscure, Xaxis has pledged to avoid them at all costs, manually.
“We proactively blacklist websites to make sure exposure to detrimental context and content is further mitigated,” she said. “As an additional layer of defense, advertisers can also work with us on whitelisting sites that are acceptable to include for their ad placements.”
For customers interested to display advertising against user-generated content on platforms such as TikTok, YouTube, Twitch, and DailyMotion, Tran said that advertisers can choose to exclude the content category from the DSP during the campaign set up phase.
“We work closely with its partners to implement 3rd party verification on all our client campaigns and are in negotiations with social media holdouts such as Facebook and Twitter to allow likewise,” she said, adding that partnerships with MOAT, Integral Ad Science, and Double Verify improve detection and optimization.
Tran suggests that advertisers and agencies should blanket avoid categories that conflict with the goods and services being advertised, adding that they can also add a filter to avoid competing brands. Keyword blocking can manually assist advertisers in doing so as well.
“Sometimes depending on the context, an advertiser might not be able to avoid a category in its entirety,” she said. “What it can do is to work out a list of keywords with its media agency that would be an added filter. For example, if it is in the airline industry, it would avoid keywords such as ‘crash’, ‘accidents’, ‘blast’ etc.”