What’s Impeding Better Programmatic Advertising— Are Small Companies Doing Enough

Although programmatic technology is winning hearts and generating more revenue in the US, it is something that small companies aren’t finding easy to embrace.


The 2016 Agency Survey conducted by Turn, an ad-tech company, revealed that while programmatic media buying has turned out to be a boon for bigger, well-equipped agencies, a large number of marketers working in small and mid-size companiesare yet to grasp the technology and understand how they can harness it. Having probed interviewees to find out what is making these smaller companies lag behind, the survey results throw light upon some key reasons. Here they are:

• Consistent Gap in Knowledge between Big and Small-Scaled Agencies

There lies a constant knowledge gap about programmatic advertising between the bigger and smaller companies. The assessment showed that merely 11% of the creative guys in small-scaled agencies understood the programmatic approach, while this number was recorded as high as 59% when creative people from larger agencies were surveyed.

The results are in deep contrast to the general notion that smaller agencies are agiler and are more open to innovation. Factors such as human know-how and data management help improve creatives in larger agencies.

• Younger Professionals are not Data-Savvy

Living in a data-driven world and not utilizing data can be considered nothing more than an anomaly. And today’s young creatives stand as a perfect example of such anomaly, as they do not seem to take keen interest in understandingconsumer or market data.

The survey foundthat 20% of the professionals working at junior levelswere not sure if they had ever seen any brief containing the word “programmatic”. A whopping 77% of them said that they did not require the insights provided by programmatic advertising. However, these results stood in stark contrast with what the people working at senior level positions said. About 70% seniors believe that data is absolutely vital when it comes to developing strategies.

• Majority Companies Consider Data to be Valuable

The outcome of the survey showed that most companies consider data important. Notwithstandingtheir sizes, agencies, about 67% of them say that when it comes to strategizing digital campaigns, data takes precedence over everything else. It is also amazing to note how some of the smaller agencies are sticklers for accurate data, especially location data, for their campaigns. During the survey, 65% of the creatives in smaller agencies chose data as their number-one priority compared to 56% of their counterparts in larger agencies. This kind of inconsistency found in the inferences of the survey has resulted from comparatively lesser knowledge of the programmatic approach among marketers, who give more value to something they don’t understandwell.

More impediments

Many industry experts have often complained that the lack of in-house programmatic technology limits the understanding of the approach among professionals in small and mid-sized agencies. The marketers are then reduced to act as mere middlemen between the brands and the tech suppliers, often providing uneducated guidance.

Programmatic advertising is here to stay, and the pie is scaling day-by-day! Reportssay that programmatic advertising is going to capture more than two-thirds of all digital display ads in the US in 2016. Thus, the only way to survive and excel in the new business environment is embracing the new technology with an open mind. Following is a step-by-step method that will help agencies to improve their programmatic competences:

• Organizing data and insights about the audience groups
• Designing persuasive creatives and campaigns
• Executing the campaigns with integrated technology
• Reaching out to all audience groups across all channels and ad formats
• Measuring the impact of the technology

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