Digital Advertising Update - WFA's programmatic guide for brands, Mastercard's global media chief's ad-tech tips, Google's cross-device consumer habits study for insurance brands, and more

The Drum's news editor Jessica Davies pulls together the latest news and analysis from the world of digital advertising. Follow Jess on Twitter @jessdaviesmk.

This week’s digital advertising round-up has been dominated by developments in the programmatic trading space with the WFA releasing its first guide for brands detailing how to combat previous barriers-to take up. Mastercard’s global head of Global Media, and member of the WFA’s programmatic taskforce has penned an article on what brands should focus on in the area, and VivaKi’s Marco Bertozzi writes about intrapreneurial ambition. Google has also urged car insurance brands to adapt faster to consumers' multi-device habits, and The Drum gives its top tips for Dmexco visitors.

The World Federation of Advertisers (WFA) has taken a definitive step in the programmatic arena, releasing a set of guidelines to help brands not only capitalise on the opportunities this form of trading creates, but also advising how to overcome ongoing issues such as lack of transparency and arbitrage.

The guidelines make clear reference to all areas that have previously acted as a barrier to brand take-up of programmatic, including concerns over data ownership and ad misplacement. It has released details on the different options brands can take to help them navigate the complex programmatic value chain – setting out the pros and cons of working exclusively with agency trading desks (ATDs); hybrid branded trading desks and brand trading desks (BTDs).

WFA brand guide on how to master programmatic trading

It simultaneously lifted the lid on which brands and WFA members have formed its Programmatic Taskforce, one of whom is Mastercard’s global head of Global Media Ben Jankowski. He wrote an article for The Drum citing the opportunities programmatic ad trading create while stressing the urgent need for brands to take steps which can help them overcome all previous barriers to take-up.

He wrote: “I think how our industry handles the opportunities that exist in the programmatic buying space and can’t help but worry about where we’re going. Whilst complicated, I steadfastly believe that advertisers and their partners need to solve the complicated morass that exists today.

He later went on to describe the benefits and pitfalls of the options around ATD / hybrid /.BTD methods for brands as such:

First, brands can employ an Agency Trading Desk (ATD). In this scenario, the ATD makes all investment decisions and controls most of the data and all of contracts. The benefit is that it’s easy to get started and you can find immediate benefits. However, a drawback is in general less transparency and an additional component of the ecosystem.

The second option is to create a hybrid trading desk with direct contracts agreed with the ATD, allowing advertisers improved control and visibility. Media will still be bought from within the ATD but the advertiser will have more control over vendors and improved transparency. Brands will have direct contracts with some of those in the chain but the data will be owned and mostly controlled by the advertiser.

This approach should give increased control, and improved transparency.

The final option for brands is the Brand Trading Desk, with all vendors for the programmatic stack appointed by the advertiser. There is still the option to work with the ATD but also the flexibility to move around. Data and contracts are controlled by the advertiser and they have both total visibility and control, easily able to switch between suppliers.

Google urges car insurance providers to cater better for people's cross-device habits

Meanwhile Google released a report, along with GFK and Nielsen, which examined the UK population’s cross-device behavioural habits when it comes to researching and purchasing car insurance.

The report shed light on a few major areas of concern for this industry – namely the fact that their online offerings lag behind consumers’ fast-changing consumption habits, and behind other sectors when it comes to cross-device attribution processes.

One of the biggest opportunities they must look to, aside from of course implementing better cross-device experiences and tracking, is content generation, according to the report. The rise of price-comparison sites in the car insurance space has meant consumers now extensively research providers ahead of any kind of purchase – whether it be a new one or a renewal.

Providers can no longer afford to communicate solely once a year, at the time of renewal, but make a concerted effort to create content and meet consumer questions and needs earlier in the consideration process of their online journeys, according to Google’s head of insurance Andy Mihalop.

Intrapreneurial ambition

This week has also seen Publicis-owned VivaKi’s president of Audience On Demand Marco Bertozzi discuss the subject of Intrapreneurial ambition in the programmatic trading market.

Top tips for Dmexco visitors

And finally,all those heading out to Dmexco next week The Dum’s Stephen Lepitak has outlined his top tips for those visiting the conference.

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