Programmatic advertising involves real-time bidding on advertising inventory to help with targeted ads. This trend has grown into a major element in today’s advertising sphere. Publishers face increasing demands to make things easy and efficient for advertisers. Buyers of advertising inventory have come to rely on open marketplaces to find what they need. The problem with this is that publishers are left wondering how to leverage their private marketplaces (PMPs). In this article, I explore the solutions that different publishers are trying out to get advertisers to buy more from them.
An expert in the publishing field coined the term demand-path optimisation to explain the approach that some publishers are taking to make inventory purchase efficient. Any player in the programmatic advertising market has heard of supply-path optimisation. It’s a term that covers the different techniques that advertisers use to identify the most cost-effective ways of buying inventory. The popularity of this concept is what has given rise to demand-path optimisation. Think of it as the opposite of supply-path optimisation. Put simply, it identifies the best means for a publisher to attract buyers.
This undertaking urges publishers to prove that they are worth more than just the inventory they sell. Not so long ago, publishers were able to showcase how important they were to the supply-chain optimisation by providing PMPs. Private marketplaces made it possible for advertisers to get programmatic ads without worrying about fraud or poor quality inventory. However, this changed with the advent of ad verification vendors who help with some of these concerns. Now, advertisers can purchase inventory from the open marketplace and get the same high quality.
How Publishers are Positioning PMPs Better
According to an ad agency executive, a big portion of inventory buying process relies more on the open exchange than PMPs because clients are focusing more on performance-based campaigns. Publishers don’t mind advertisers getting purchasing inventory from the open marketplace, because it still generates revenue. Nonetheless, publishers are doing everything they can to present PMPs as better options. Take AccuWeather, for instance. The publisher offers advertisers the same inventory in the open and private marketplaces. However, if you get the inventory from the PMP, AccuWeather incorporates its first-party data, meaning that advertisements experience improved performance because they only run after specific conditions are met. One advantage that this has is that you can control ads for higher viewability. The idea is to have buyers consider the plus side of first-party data.
Leaf Group has win-rate curves for its advertisers. The publisher makes the purchasing process less complicated by directing programmatic bids for buyers. With this feature, advertisers have a higher chance of securing inventory at the Leaf Group PMP. The graphs contain information about the clearing prices against win rates, which project the impressions at particular bid prices. With this data, advertisers have an idea of what to expect and can use that to break down different odds, depending on the scenario. Something else that Leaf Group is doing to promote its PMPs is to identify the most efficient buying paths. The publisher leverages the data that it has access to such as revenue shares and first-party data.
Better Inventory Access and Monitoring
Another way that publishers are highlighting the need for PMPs is by improving access to inventory. Private marketplaces give advertisers a director connection to the vendor. It is why PMPs are valuable. Buyers have the opportunity to see what goes on behind the curtain. A publisher can easily show an advertiser the primary SSPs used and explain the best way to get inventory. Transparency by publishers about their programmatic supply was limited in the past, mainly due to the contracts with SPPs. However, publishers, advertisers and agencies joined forces to demand better transparency from ad tech vendors.
Tracking what advertisers buy is a smart strategy that is helping publishers boost their offerings and efficiency. Some publishers tell their sellers to watch what type of inventory advertisers are getting at the open marketplace and the prices they pay. This information goes a long way when a publisher is looking to upsell to an advertiser. When you know the ad formats that an advertiser is buying, the content type and the budget, it will be easier to create a PMP pitch for that buyer. By advertisers spending more on the open market, it doesn’t mean that a publisher has lost.
In whatever they do to create more buzz for PMPs, publishers should never neglect buyer monitoring. It’s the easiest way for publishers to ensure that they are not losing advertisers. It may seem like an obvious measure, but some publishers set up private marketplaces and then forget about them. A publisher might take a while to notice that the advertisers on its PMP are inactive, and when they do, it might be too late. As a publisher, you can schedule regular monitoring to guarantee that everything is going on as required.