Programmatic is ‘a method of buying media that uses real-time bidding through data and algorithms to automate delivery and provide targeting to specific audiences’. The old model of buying media was to review data from syndications of different media publishers such as TV, radio, and print, for example DMA’s, and plan out your media months in advance. The audience targeting was sometimes accurate and other times a waste of money, but in most cases, the results could not be truly analyzed as they were NOT driven by data.
The transformation from traditional media buying to digital media buying is significant. The real-time and automated process of buying media has reformed the role into a marketing strategist who focuses more on creating audience targeting models, A/B testing, and optimizing and less on buying the specific media channels. The emphasis should be on magnifying the brand and repurposing it’s content that can now be extended to ad formats across the web and other digital means. These channels can build awareness and brand recognition around first-party and third-party data from individual platforms to various ad exchanges, the ‘syndications’ of the internet.
As a result, buying and running programmatic is more of a technical challenge that requires focus around the consumer’s needs. Once the individual in your target audience gets to your website through programmatic and other targeted means, you only need to be ready to review the analytics that shows your user’s interactions and conversion path flows and consider how it matches with your intended user flow. From there you can see what needs to be improved in your website’s messaging, A/B testing various paths and offerings to continually improve performance. Then, when the visitor leaves your website, provide specific messaging through programmatic based on the the types of content they interact with on your site if they expressed interest. The cool thing is, interest can be defined by your own measurement model. In other words, you decide what interest means!
There are several elements to running programmatic that I should leave for another post.