Dylan Temple-Heald, Director – Precision at Publicis Media, explains how programmatic can deliver and where it can still be improved, especially in the region.
How can programmatic improve a campaign’s effectiveness?
Planning. While programmatic is the ability to automate the delivery of an advertiser’s campaign, we still need to have foundations set by good planning. Having programmatic specialists involved in the planning process will ensure you are going to achieve the best results for your campaigns.
Optimization. [This can be] done either manually or through custom algorithms to automate the optimization and delivery of campaigns. Using the huge amount of data available through manual and automated reporting, we’re able to optimize campaigns to ensure the desired KPIs are achieved.
Transparency. Through programmatic, we’re able to track and measure delivery and efficacy of an advertisers campaign in real-time.
What are its pros and cons?
We could write a whole article just on this question alone! In short form:
What about its main challenges and opportunities?
The fast-paced evolution of programmatic and ad-tech in general presents both a challenge and an opportunity. The challenge is to keep up with all the emerging technology partners and each of their capabilities, [as well as] publishers developing new targeting and creative executions. But advertisers also have the opportunity to take advantage of new ways to engage with their audiences in more meaningful manners.
I also see the move forward, as an industry, without third-party cookies as both a challenge and an opportunity to develop a better way of tracking and targeting, improving on a solution that hasn’t evolved in 15 years.
How important is creative within the programmatic environment?
Audiences are constantly being targeted with messaging from all kinds of advertisers these days. The amount of advertisers all competing for a single user is huge, so it’s important that the creative being served is more engaging and is able to cut through the noise of the competition. We work with partners and tools that give us the ability to build and deliver creative solutions that will be more engaging with the audience. Most creative formats are able to run programmatically; it’s just a matter of imagination and how open the advertiser is to testing new ideas.
What is the state of programmatic in the MENA region and what is driving its growth?
Without going into too much detail, we have seen a YoY increase in programmatic investment of roughly 40% for the past three years. These are significant figures when you compare against other channels like OOH and TV.
There are a number of factors driving this growth, but the biggest and most important one is the continued education of agency teams and clients directly. Carrying out internal and external training sessions has helped to build understanding and confidence in the conversations and planning of programmatic campaigns.
Another factor driving growth is the control it gives brands when it comes to delivering campaigns, and the efficiencies that come with consolidating their display and video media buys into one place, allowing them to manage frequency and drive greater results which in turn helps increase investment.
What are the current gaps in the market and how are stakeholders addressing them?
Education. As much as we have done a good job of educating advertisers about the benefits of programmatic, there is still a greater number of brand marketing teams that don’t feel confident or comfortable with discussing programmatic or including it in their marketing strategies.
Data. MENA still lags behind when it comes to availability of third-party data. While we are getting better with scaling the amount of third-party data available, we are still a long way off compared to markets like the US or Europe when it comes to audience segments and scalability.
Product releases. There are products available in other markets we have yet to have released in MENA. We are in constant communication with global technology and publisher partners to ensure any new product developments or even existing products are being released to us in the MENA region as quickly as possible. An example of this is Programmatic OOH opportunities that are quite common in markets like the US and the UK, due to the existing infrastructure in place. Another example is addressable TV, still in its early infancy in the region.
These are just a few examples…