Let’s Talk About Programmatic Frustrations

We’re going in a slightly different direction this week to give you a peek under the hood at a day in the life at a programmatic agency.

As powerful as programmatic is, there are a fair number of frustrations we deal with on a day-to-day basis. Let’s take a look:

Buyer beware: data can be oversold

When you pay for data sets, the more specific you go, the more expensive it gets. There are good reasons for that: cross-referencing, cleaning and analyzing data takes time and expertise, and more granular data has greater value. In principle, you make back the cost of the more sophisticated targeting info by getting a better return on your more targeted campaign.

That’s theory, though. In practice, some data that purports to be high quality just isn’t as good as advertised. Data providers aren’t always as transparent as we’d like about their data collection methods, which means there could be inaccuracies that they’re not disclosing. The result is lower quality of traffic and lower returns than expected.

Communication breakdowns

We work with a lot of data management platforms (DMPs) and demand-side platforms (DSPs), and every one of them has its own quirks. The language and terminology used across platforms can vary pretty widely, and that can lead to difficulties and breakdowns in communication.

Another difficulty is just that programmatic as a concept is relatively new. There’s a lot of information out there, some of which is excellent, some of which is… not so much. Add in the challenge of translating language among different sources and there’s just a lot to navigate.

On the user side, we deal with the same problem as any other advertising platform: ad clutter. Just as you see a ton of ads on any given search engine results page, you may see a bunch of programmatic ads on your favorite news website. Even with the powerful targeting options we use, cutting through that clutter is a challenge.

So how do we solve those frustrations?

As with so many things, the key to overcoming the challenges of programmatic is experience. We’ve taken the time to learn the language, sift through the information available and understand the quirks, capabilities and limitations of each tool in the programmatic toolbox. We know what to look for when evaluating the quality of a data set and how to use quality control tools to mitigate bad traffic and protect brand safety. We work with data providers that use ethical data collection practices and use key parameters to push ads toward the better exchanges.

Above all, we constantly make adjustments on the fly, recognizing when something isn’t working and updating targeting, creative and copy to get better results over time.

Wading into programmatic isn’t easy, but when you have the right partner, you see real results. You can count on us to cut through these frustrations because we deal with them every day. Contact us now to speak with a THRONE expert about your programmatic campaign.

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