While automated advertising has been the focus of all marketers for several years now, many of them still don’t take advantage of the opportunities it offers. And that’s because we don’t know what’s really hidden behind these so-called “smart” ads.
Programmatic advertising relies on the use of various technologies, in this case artificial intelligence and machine learning, in order to buy and sell digital advertising space (online, on mobile, social networks, etc.), through a real-time auction system. This ultimately makes it possible to deliver more effective advertisements to the right audiences based on different data, in particular, the buying habits of Internet users.
Thus, advertising space is sold via a real-time bidding (RTB) system on automated electronic platforms. Thanks to this system, which takes user data into account, advertisers can decide which ads they want to broadcast by priority, audience, when and where. This clearly allows them to reach their goals effectively.
This technology combines “big data” and “algorithms” to achieve maximum efficiency. What is not possible in other operations that require individual tariff negotiations with website operators. A manual process that takes a lot of time and does not allow for accurate targeting.
Programmatic advertising is of great interest today for all companies that want to invest in online advertising (desktop or mobile) and for media agencies that manage online marketing for their clients. Since it is now possible to define exact targeting criteria and decide which ad the user will see, when and where, the impact of this smart and personalized ad is much greater than that of other methods.
What are the targeting methods?
In fact, programmatic advertising exploits various methods of targeting advertisers. Here are the most important ones:
This is to serve ads based on the semantic context of the website. Thus, business service providers may decide to publish their advertisements only on IT media sites. Same for a clothing brand that could choose not to appear on the website of a fashion magazine, for example.
This time it’s about serving ads based on specific keywords. For example, an online store of smartphone accessories and spare parts can provide a list of keywords corresponding to this topic. This list is then matched to the content of the site to provide the best possible link to ad delivery.
- behavioral targeting
It’s about showing ads, not based on context or keyword list, but based on user cookies. Thus, if the user has already visited the smartphone parts store, he will be able to receive an advertisement, even if he reads an article on a site dealing with sports news. All user behavior data is collected through cookies.
- Targeting by geolocation
This relates to accessing users based on their geographic location. A technology that can be very interesting for local companies, because their ads appear only among users who are in a certain geographic area (city, region, etc.). It may also be useful for global brands, or some online services, to display ads specific to a language and adapt them to audiences in a particular country.
For what advantages and what is the return on investment?
The main challenge for e-merchants today is the complexity of the buying process for Internet users, who access their sites through many channels (search engines, screens, social networks, etc.) and then leave, only to come back later with another terminal (phone smartphone, tablet, etc) or never come back. Programmatic advertising specifically makes it possible to reduce distribution losses and is a response to the volatility of Internet users, since it makes it possible to broadcast personalized advertising to the user on the site he consults, regardless of the channel he uses. In terms of return on investment, it has several main advantages, as it makes it possible to improve targeting thanks to the data collected on various distribution channels and increase the effectiveness of advertising campaigns, while reducing costs compared to traditional methods.
What are the future prospects?
Marketers’ enthusiasm for automated advertising and the growth outlook for this market prove it: Automation is the solution to better target and convert your audience at scale. The fact remains that the coming years should be characterized by new regulatory challenges, in particular the Digital Service Act (DSA) proposed by the European Commission which will not be without impact on targeted advertising, and will certainly force a reinterpretation of existing texts (the General Data Protection Regulation and the Electronic Privacy Directive in particular particular). To this should also be added new national texts that could affect advertising investments, particularly those of advertisers in certain sectors already involved in the digital sphere.