With programmatic advertising, the placement, buying process, and optimisation of ads is easier, faster, and more target than ever before. Gone are the days of going through the content process and then having to get in touch with publishers to enquire about the rates and availability of their limited ad space. Nowadays, programmatic advertising offers an automated solution to this manual process, saving advertisers both time and money. Now before you run off to build your programmatic advertising strategy and start serving your ads to the masses, there are some key tips to keep in mind.
When you run a programmatic advertising campaign, it’s more difficult to track exactly where, when and to whom your ads are served (not impossible, just more difficult), principally because of the sheer volume upon which programmatic advertising technology operates. As such, choosing the right partner is akin to protecting your brand’s integrity and identity. But how can you be sure about where your ads appear so that they do not appear on damaging or irrelevant sites? Great question. One technique used by certain display advertisers is to use lists that separate the kinds of content that is acceptable and unacceptable appearing in the same context as your ad. You can also decide on which websites you want to blacklist. Ad fraud is another issue that you need to be aware of in your programmatic advertising. This occurs when your paid ad never shows up, i.e. is never served at all! Is the company reputable? Have you spoken with their previous clients to ask about their experience? What about their online testimonials or reviews? Make these enquiries or risk running an unsafe programmatic advertising campaign.
Work out exactly who your audience is before you start your campaign. This is particularly pertinent in programmatic advertising, as the attributes are essentially parameters that direct where, when, to whom and how often your ads are served. Set these criteria too broadly, and you risk spending your limited budget unnecessarily. Set them too narrowly, however, and you’ll limit your audience reach, thus limiting the scope of the campaign. One technique that can help your programmatic advertising campaign along is to develop unique buyer profiles for the different segments of your audience to help you envision and define your target market and more effectively map the different groups you are trying to reach.
Don’t just launch before you have run sufficient tests for your ad! To begin with, run your ad in a more traditional fashion, such as through A/B testing, and use a limited budget. Programmatic advertising campaigns can take some time to optimise, and sometimes require significant budget to truly optimise and ensure ongoing ROI. Before you spend big, ask yourself whether or not you can afford to stick it out until your campaign is optimised. Before starting the campaign, you should have a good idea about the best way to deliver your content, what content serves your campaigns goals most effectively, and which audience segments to target with more of your programmatic budget. These test runs will help you work out where you are receiving the most consumer engagement for the product you are offering. It goes without saying, that the bulk of your budget should be invested into the strongest performing areas based on these initial tests.
Constant monitoring of your data and analytics is the only way to know which audience segments are performing best. Your analytics reveal which sites are most responsive, and thus which areas of your programmatic advertising campaign deserve additional investment, and conversely, which you can reduce your spend in. Without ongoing observation, you could miss key insights, which could impact your bottom line and overall campaign results. A lot of the time, programmatic advertising will reveal insights about your audience that you didn’t expect to see. The campaigns that perform strongest are the ones you want to invest more money into. Whether this segment “matches” your target market is largely irrelevant if, in the end, the data redefines your target market for you. Programmatic advertising is really a “rinse and repeat” process of retargeting into the strongest performing areas. After a few rounds of retargeting, the results will continue to improve and speak for themselves.
Get to know as much as you can about programmatic advertising. The more you understand about the process, the less intimidating this new(ish) form of marketing will feel, particularly if you’re yet to run a campaign using data-driven marketing approaches. This means reading articles, getting involved in webinars, and learning as much as you can about the technology behind programmatic advertising.
Want to know more? Benchmarketing’s team of ad-buying pros can walk you through the process one step at a time so that you’re confident about testing out programmatic advertising for yourself. Get in touch and learn more about how we can help.