Mobile programmatic III.

Gábor Brindza

Managing Director

I’ve started this whole programmatic-themed article saga - I should admit it wasn’t planned to be so long, but so many questions had raised on the way –, because in the past years I had the illusion that everybody in the industry had gone through the same learning process, worked with the same partners, and offered the same products or solutions. But slowly the awakening came.

I had to realize that it’s absolutely a false idea, and meeting the awkward offers of different companies got me like a pinch in the arm. I’m listing here the sometimes interesting, sometimes shocking experiences I had and the thoughts arising from them. My intention with this article is no less, than to save a cautionary tale – or jaw drop – and plenty of time for the readers. As I promised this time mobile will get the spotlight, but it was necessary to go through the basics first, and see either the benefits and the shortcomings of the programmatic platform.

  1. Web and mobile programmatic aren’t the same

For a long time, I thought mobile and web work likewise, as they’re served from the same system. But it’s the same as the in the case of traditional method of web and mobile media buying, namely there are still a lot of differences between them. This issue arouses from the simple fact that most players are not really proficient – or interested? – in mobile.

The most specialist companies and the tech providers serving them concentrate on web, and only run out the ads on mobile as a duty. This approach is downright tactile on the campaigns, and that’s why – not so infrequently – badly served – I have discussed it in the previous article -, wrongly targeted and low-grade Google ads appear. In the end there are the disastrous mobile campaign results. When we see a 300×600 banner, we know mobile has pulled the short straw again.

  1. Everybody has a unique system

The automated world has irretrievably come. And on the back of the programmatic wave came the gold-diggers, who have their obviously very unique, very special system, algorithm or service that is not purchasable anywhere else. They usually use the ‘breakthrough’ and ‘proprietary‘ markers describing themselves. After at least two, but usually more conference calls when we finally get the access and can test the systems, the infantile mistakes emerge quickly.

The solution may be easy: rely on others’ recommendations, and let’s work with those tested providers. This might be the easier, but not necessarily the better way. It takes a lot of time to test all the attractive systems, and go beneath the glistening surface, but I hope that these either good or bad experiences will help us to outline what do we expect from the chosen systems.

  1. “For 10,000 dollars I will travel there and teach you”

In the past four years if we haven’t spoken to 50+ companies, then to non. Besides the problem mentioned in the above paragraph the offered products have several deficiencies. The first pitfall usually was the fixed monthly amount to be spent, starting from 5000-10000 dollars. Why were they so sure that we will spent such amounts without testing?! We never found out, because we compromised on a way lower amount, and left with disappointment, because the system didn’t even know the half we expected, especially for the original price. And then yes, they would travel from the USA to teach us the system, even before we knew if we could use it without their education or not.

  1. The system is not everything

I admit, we do not have our own development. Our big idea instead is to learn a system so deeply even its developer doesn’t know it. This may sound ridiculously, but it has happened that we knew a solution better than the provider, because we faced the difficulties arising from the usage.

It used to be trendy to chit-chat about who works with who, with which system – almost everybody worked with Turn or DC – are they in contact, or sells as their own. We don’t sell our own system, because we don’t have one.

 What we have is the knowledge, more specifically that we know our DSP and SSP servers’ system the best, and also what’s available through traditional media buying. Thus, we are capable to decide for which campaign goal, customer approach is programmatic or its feature suitable for. First it may not sound like a big deal, but we have spent the last four years to become familiar with the tiniest details. 

 

  1. Adform

We’ve established a successful cooperation with Adform as programmatic partner, because our mentalities regarding the programmatic platform are very similar. There most positive in their attitude is the way they undertake and develop the mobile segment, sometimes even better, than the web solutions, and we have never met anyone, who dared to use the word ‘brand’ in programmatic context. This is the most ideal path for us, and I encourage everyone to spend time on finding the suitable programmatic provider.

  1. How do we market?

It’s a though case. How can we go to a customer, who not just on mobile generally, but isn’t even self-confident on the web, and talk about this new world? It won’t work. Therefore, instead of selling the trendy “programmatic” campaign we draw-up product benefits. And as we formulate these product benefits we realize there’s a fine line between our traditional and automated product palette.

Yep, still weren’t much specific mobile related conclusions as I planned in the beginning, but as the finish line is just a glimpse away in the last part nothing left to talk about but the mobile aspect of programmatic.

November 4, 2016
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