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The need for partnerships, walled gardens & why click through rates 'suck': 8 takeaways from the MMA Forum


By Benjamin Cher, Reporter

June 14, 2017 | 4 min read

At the recently concluded Mobile Marketing Association Forum in Singapore, the programmatic crowd was out in force.

Programmatic buying

The eight takeaways from the programmatic panel at MMA Forum Singapore

The panel, which comprised of Sanchit Sanga, chief digital officer, Mindshare Asia Pacific, Joe Nguyen, senior vice president, Asia Pacific, comScore, Kenneth Chow, commercial director, South East Asia, Adobe Advertising Cloud and Chiradeep Gupta, global media director, Unilever. sounded optimistic despite issues with programmatic ad fraud and lack of experience in some markets.

These executives told the crowd their two cents about programmatic and why they should join in the revolution.

  1. “Programmatic is a method of buying and not a media in itself, so you do not evaluate a method the same way you evaluate a media channel. Social, video, search, native, are channels in which you buy, automation or programmatic is the method for buying the same thing,” said Sanchit.

  2. “Click through rate (CTR) sucks. CTR does nothing for branding, it’s optimising towards 18 to 25 year old males who often don’t have money,” said Nguyen.

  3. “It comes back down to measurability and data collection, once we can understand and trust that we are getting in front of the right audience as an industry, we’ll find that we’re moving the needle [on programmatic] from its current place,” said Chow.

  4. “Brand safety should be table stakes, it should be the basic working end of the publisher and exchanges, agencies and advertisers to play around. Why should you only audit something that is so basic in nature, why spend money evaluating something that should be the responsibility of publishers rather than marketers,” said Sanchit.

  5. “Everything needs to perform, it’s about how you evaluate the performance. In order for programmatic to be better and efficient, but one of the biggest element of cost is tech, you end up spending so much money on tech and hampering the efficiency that programmatic is supposed to bring and that’s not going to work. If we establish that programmatic is so much better and efficient, we need to work on reducing cost element so we can make it more efficient,” said Chiradeep.

  6. “[Walled gardens] To me they’ve hoodwinked the audiences into believing that they should only be marketing through Google and Facebook. They have training courses on how to market through them, out of the millions of publishers and avenues, why do they get to decide how people should market, and decide in a way that is comfortable to them? Till very late, they did not allow third party verification on many of the metrics we talk about. To me they sway ignorant marketers and agencies into believing their method is the right method, it cannot be all good,” said Sanchit.

  7. “We do not have neutral audited inventory sources, neutral audited audience sources, that come in to evaluate every dollar that is being spent, I’m a big believer in that. The market has to work hand in hand with the likes of MMA and IAB to change the method of these guys [walled gardens] are being evaluated and become participant in that democracy,” said Sanchit.

  8. “I hope in five to 10 years we would have found a way to consolidate the industry and come up with the metrics and data that works to address these issues of reaching our audience and ensuring that our dollars, our non-working media dollars are actually working for us,” said Chow.

    Find more digital advertising news and content at the dedicated section of The Drum.

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