Over the past five years I have had a lot of conversations with people about programmatic. I’m often surprised to learn that even many seasoned marketers have dismissed programmatic due to real or perceived obstacles. The reasoning for ignoring this incredibly effective opportunity generally fall into one of three buckets:
1. WE DON’T DO DISPLAY ADS.
There is a common misconception about programmatic just being a new way to buy display ads. The reality? Programmatic is so much more than display.
Programmatic does give you access to display ads on desktop and mobile devices. However, it also gives you access to native, video, and emerging formats such as connected TV, digital audio, and digital out of home. By accessing these diverse channels, programmatic gives you access to virtually every internet connected consumer in the United States to run data-driven digital campaigns to.
2. WE ARE OKAY WITH OUR CURRENT MARKETING MIX.
Marketers that buy directly from platforms such as Google AdWords or Facebook Business Manager and run retention programs via email are missing out on a big opportunity. Email, Facebook, and Google are fantastic platforms, but also limiting in their own ways. For example:
Meta is a great way to reach a large audience with robust targeting data. However, Facebook only reaches about 65% of the connected audience in the United States. People spend 70%+ of their connected time outside of social media. Programmatic is the most efficient way to reach people when they are not on social media as well as reaching those who aren’t on social media period.
Google AdWords provides access to its search engine, YouTube video, and Gmail native ads. You also get access to a wider display, native, and video network. While this seems robust, it pales in comparison to what programmatic offers. Emerging formats such as connected TV, digital out of home, and digital audio aren’t offered in AdWords. Further, programmatic provides full control over placements, access to a massive 3rd party data marketplace, and omni-channel controls that maximize efficiency across all of the available channels.
Email is a fantastic tool and it is something that should be a part of every marketing mix. That said, deliverability continues to get harder and open rates for most marketers continues to slide. In short, it’s getting harder to get a share of voice within consumer inboxes. Email alone isn’t enough to run successful retention or acquisition campaigns.
While email, Google, and Facebook are great ways for small businesses to do digital on a budget, it’s not nearly robust enough for serious digital marketers.
3. WE WOULD LOVE TO TRY PROGRAMMATIC, BUT WE DON’T HAVE THE RESOURCES (BOTH HUMAN AND FINANCIAL) TO RUN IT.
Yes, programmatic can be expensive. Most DSPs (Demand Side Platforms) require minimum spend commitments well into the six figures per year. If you require their assistance to setup and manage your campaigns (which most companies will because programmatic is very complex), 50% or more of your spend could be going to fees. That is a difficult pill to swallow.
If you are an agency or a brand that would love to get into programmatic, but do not have the internal resources or budget to do so, Population Science can help. We specialize in helping small to medium-sized organizations get into programmatic with personalized strategies, flexible minimums and a commitment to making programmatic accessible.
WHERE DO I START?
With all of the tactics and channels available in the programmatic space, you can run up a very large media bill pretty easily. For those of you looking to dip your toe in the water, here are a few places I suggest getting started:
Retargeting: Everyone retargets. Most people use Google Display Network, AdRoll, or Criteo for this. These are great platforms, but they are very limited in leveraging your retargeting data for prospecting campaigns (at least in a transparent way). Programmatic has all of the retargeting capabilities of these platforms plus much more.
Prospecting: Take the learnings from your website visitors, even with a smaller data set, and reapply that to an omni-channel prospecting campaign. We can model people that convert on your site with other browsers to find people who are currently in-market for your product or service. We can even leverage 3rd party data sources to further hone in on your target audience.
Connected TV: Connected TV is a channel that every marketer should be in on. It combines the impact of TV advertising with the targeting and tracking capabilities of digital ads. More than 80% of internet users currently stream at least some of their video content and this number is rapidly growing.
Ready to explore programmatic for your 2024 marketing? We’re here to help.
Whether you’re an agency with clients who could benefit from programmatic strategy or a business looking to reach new prospects and reengage customers in exciting ways, we’d love to chat about your needs and put together a plan for success.
Contact us today and let’s talk!