Why Programmatic Media Buying is Effective for Marketers

Posted on August 1, 2019 by Media Culture

Developing a strong digital media strategy is essential for successful marketers.

With the popularity of digital platforms such as social media and over-the-top (OTT) streaming digital media, digital marketing is all but essential if one wishes to effectively reach the target demographic for the brands that they are advertising. Digital marketing can be significantly different than traditional linear marketing, however, so it is important to not simply attempt to recreate traditional advertising strategies for the digital world.

Instead of choosing advertising opportunities based on the reach of the platform, digital media allows marketers to focus on the specific audiences that are reached. This means that marketers can use programmatic media buying to target only those demographics that are most likely to show interest in a brand. This provides a level of control over advertising campaigns that once would have been thought impossible.

What is programmatic media buying?

Digital media platforms allow for the dynamic insertion of advertisements without the ads being embedded in the media stream itself.

Unlike traditional linear marketing where ads are placed in a limited number of advertising slots that are broadcast to all viewers, digital platforms allow for the insertion of different ads for different devices or viewers. This is how digital marketers are able to target viewers by demographic; the ads only appear to consumers who fall within the chosen demographics, while others receive ads for other brands that they match the target demographic for.

This concept of digital insertion is a key component of programmatic media buying. Software algorithms automate the buying and placement of advertising space alongside media that the target demographic is viewing.

The transactions occur in real time, with the algorithms instantly matching the ad inventory with viewers that fall within the target; the immediate nature of the transactions allow for automated ad optimization and a greater level of control over when, where and how advertisements for the brand are displayed.

Effectiveness of programmatic advertising

The amount of control given to marketers and the ability to make corrections to digital media campaigns are key features of programmatic media buying. This allows marketers to fine-tune their desired demographics and improve the overall effectiveness of ad campaigns as viewership and interaction data becomes available.

As a result, there is often reduced waste from advertising spending because a greater amount of the campaign is being displayed for the very consumers who are interested in the marketed brand. The fine-tuned demographic data also informs future digital marketing plans, making them more effective and efficient from the start.

This ability to optimize and fine tune campaigns as they run significantly increases the value of ads placed with digital media. Ads placed on digital platforms cost more than more traditional linear ads, and may actually cost two to three times as much per thousand views as equivalent linear ads.

Demographic targeting and the ease of modifying running campaigns based on effectiveness result in a much greater return on investment, however. The cost required to reach a set number of viewers within a target demographic can actually be significantly lower than linear advertising, as pay-for-reach ads are viewed by a significantly higher number of viewers who fall outside of the desired demographic.

Programmatic digital marketing

Programmatic advertising is one of the most powerful tools available to the digital marketer.

Targeting demographics programmatically across social media platforms or OTT devices creates brand familiarity among the target viewers and can have a notable impact on sales. For those just entering the realm of digital marketing, learning how to effectively control marketing campaigns through programmatic media buying is an important skill that will have a very real payoff down the line.

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