InMobi and MMA recently hosted an Industry roundtable titled “Programmatic on Mobile: Ready, Wait or Rethink” in Singapore where a select group of 40 leaders across different sections of the advertising ecosystem were invited. Through insightful conversations, leaders from Rubicon, Mindshare, OMD and Standard Chartered reviewed the readiness of the APAC region to embrace programmatic.
The broad consensus was that the industry is still evolving and only a handful of progressive advertisers have really embraced programmatic as the predominant mode of mobile media management. Even these progressive advertisers along with their agencies had an uphill climb in terms of technology partner selection to power their programmatic platforms and talent pool to operationalize it.
If you want to start in Mobile Programmatic and don’t know where you stand, we recommend a 4 step program to conquer it.
1. Mobile Programmatic does not equal to buying cheaply
Conversations on programmatic start with the wrong objective in mind - ‘can I get some cheap traffic’, ‘do you have xyz premium site on your exchange’. People incorrectly assume that cheaper media is equal to programmatic efficiency. Programmatic efficiency comes from creating a true program for end-to-end success. The cost efficiency in programmatic comes from the reduction in cycle time to: think of a campaign, brief the agency, create a media plan, create the mocks and then go live. This process can take over 4 months normally. For our most progressive partner, even during the peak season of Ramadhan in Indonesia, we were able to reduce this cycle time to half using programmatic
2. Don’t bring your desktop mindset to mobile programmatic: be truly mobile capable
Mobile is different. One needs to transition from the easy to implement, widely available cookie based desktop world to the device identifier based mobile world. Most DSPs have been created for desktop and have then been adapted for mobile. Hence most mobile programmatic initiatives tend to scratch the surface by implementing a largely mobile web initiative or buying from open exchange. Real mobile capabilities include:
- Buying across all formats – banners, full screen, mobile video in its various forms – 15 to 30 sec, vertical vs horizontal, interactive and 360 and lastly native. Native on mobile provides access to non duplicated in-app inventory and up to 4X performance when compared to normal banners
- Buying true audiences on PMPs – there is a wide variety of audiences available on mobile programmatic. Through PMPs, clients have access to first party data targeting based on advanced multidimensional data signals as well as 100% viewability of impressions
- A strong emphasis being directed towards brand protection, real time checks ensuring validity of impressions and clicks and big data trend analysis detecting spoofing at all levels, all make programmatic a safe option for marketers
- Have your DMPs and other verification support mobile in a seamless manner
3. Invest to learn: mobile intelligence that drives advertising effectiveness
Over a period of time, by investing more resources in understanding why certain media or certain creatives or certain forms of targeting work better under different circumstances, there will be intelligence built by planners and buyers on how to plan for media effectiveness. For instance, creatives that use location and contextual targeting have 38% more engagement than banners and a dwell time of more than 10 seconds. InMobi recently ran a programmatic campaign in the Middle East where the advertiser tested over 40 combinations of creatives and audiences to determine what should be their mobile execution plan for the future. Programmatic can help advertisers run creative tests at scale or even brand effectiveness studies.
4. Create advertising agility and scale via always on buying and faster responsiveness
Learnings from step 1, 2 and 3, can help advertisers create a ‘digitally automated playground’ to follow their audience. Embedding mobile programmatic into the larger marketing automation domain where campaign data CRM or purchase data co-exist has its advantages. Advertisers can break away from the illiquidity that prevails by thinking of campaigns and embed mobile programmatic into their customer segmentation models to optimize for marketing objectives that have direct linkage to sales and brand metrics thus driving mobile ROI.
Clearly creating a program for success entails various elements. From thinking audience-first to maximizing reach through diversified ad format, constant optimization for results is truly at the heart of programmatic.