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Apparently, there’s more to Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn than advertising. Huh.

© Heurist. Pty. Ltd. 2019

What is programmatic advertising?

Welcome to the CAASie learning experience, where I choose a fun subject and explain it to you as if you were a dog, but because you were really good, they moved you up to human being status.

This quick lesson is about Programmatic Advertising.

Why? Because I made a very special little web application that could be considered a demand-side-platform for programmatic advertising, and it would be nice (for me) if more people understood what that means.

So, let’s start at the beginning…

Curious about CAASie yet?

Go on, give me a try. I’m free to use, y’know.

The online platform takes the familiar concepts of digital advertising and extends them to the outside world.

Instead of purchasing a fixed duration campaigns, advertisers will be able to bid in real-time for individual ad plays that range from 5-30 seconds.  This flexible arrangement makes billboard advertising comparable to Google Ads or Facebook (and other social media) advertising, giving small businesses the opportunity to stand toe to toe with the larger companies that traditionally dominate the scene.

Digital8 has long been one of the premier digital agencies in Brisbane; with a strong focus on return-on-investment-driven integrated marketing campaigns executed across multiple media channels. However, out-of-home has always been elusive – the traditional buying process lacked the flexibility that would allow out-of-home to accommodate the dynamic needs of a digital marketing campaign. Combined with CAASie, Digital8 can now bring their clients an entire new avenue for advertising and be on the forefront of advertising technology. This partnership with CAASie enables Digital8 to offer unrivalled omni-channel marketing campaigns for their customers, not only in Brisbane, but across an entire global marketplace of out-of-home media. 

Moreover, the CAASie team encourage new advertisers to take advantage of Digital8’s wealth of digital advertising experience and expertise in strategy, planning and management of cross-platform campaigns. 

CAASie aims to bolster the advertising efforts of local small and growing businesses by making out-of-home more accessible and more flexible. Combining digital marketing with out-of-home enables these businesses to create brand awareness and associations that will drive their all-important click-through rates.”  says Taryn Syratt – Director and Project Lead at CAASie.

Digital8 are incredibly excited to team up with CAASie, the technology that they are using is incredibly innovative and we are so excited to be able to provide our clients with more well rounded and comprehensive marketing campaigns. OOH Advertising has always worked hand in hand with digital marketing to further legitimise a companies campaign and can boost brand awareness significantly. With the help of CAASie, we will be able to boost our clients into the stratosphere” Liam Fogarty – Inbound Marketing Strategist at Digital8

For more information please contact 

Taryn Syratt 
Director and Project Lead
[email protected]

Curious about CAASie yet?

Go on, give me a try. I’m free to use, y’know.

What is programmatic advertising?

The word programmatic simply means relating to or having a program. So programmatic advertising is, well, advertising that is performed using a program.

That’s disappointing isn’t it? This extremely complicated, innovative tech terminology boiled down to “it’s in the name”. Well I’m sorry to disappoint but it really is this simple:

Programmatic advertising is the process of buying and selling ad inventory using a computer program or algorithm. 

If you are comfortable with the word “algorithm”, you can skip on right ahead to “How does it work?”. But for those who find the word a little bit intimidating I’ll start with how programmatic advertising is used.

So, how is it used?

Scaling everything right back to bare minimum, when purchasing advertising space, you have a seller and a buyer.

Fun example time!

Yellow Polka Dot, the swimwear Magazine, wants to sell their ad inventory – e.g. a full-page ad at the front of the magazine. Their sales team would reach out to consumers who might be interested.

On the other side, Itsy Bitsy, with their cute new bikini range, might be looking for avenues to get their product to market. Their marketing team will do a dance with Yellow Polka Dot’s sales team to find out what is available and form an agreement.

Lucky for both parties, there was both supply and demand.

Unfortunately, sellers are often left with remnant inventory – spaces they are unable to fill. Even though Yellow Polka Dot heavily discount their remnant inventory, it isn’t always enough to fill up every slot.

Having seen the gap in the market, some charming new companies began to aggregate and offer the unsold or remnant inventory to media consumers – like Itsy Bitsy’s marketing team. What this did, aside from increasing Yellow Polka Dot’s sales, was make it easier for Itsy Bitsy to find specific media and target the right audiences at the right time.

Programmatic advertising does exactly that. It enables the buyer to use one platform to find, target, and purchase ad inventory.

Although it is still used in conjunction with a traditional sales team, programmatic advertising is no longer used exclusively for the purpose of selling the remnant inventory and, in some cases, it may be the primary sales tool. Welcome to the digital age, am I right?

So now that you know how it is used, let’s dig into how it works.

How does it work?

Where traditional advertising has a buyer and a seller, programmatic advertising has a demand-side platform and a supply-side platform.

Three is my favourite number, so I’ll break the process into three parts:

  1. A supply-side platform connects to the seller. It communicates to a demand-side platform that the seller has ad inventory available.
  2. The demand-side platform connects to the buyer. It listens to the supply-side platform and allows the buyer to purchase the inventory.
  3. The demand-side platform communicates the purchase of inventory back to the supply-side platform which, in turn, informs the seller.

Although it may seem like a long-winded process, it is entirely automated and can be almost instantaneous.
The seller will typically have another program (a content management system) that ensures an ad is displayed at the right time. Thankfully, the buyer doesn’t need to carry out any additional steps – simply make a payment as if purchasing any other product online.

Unless you want to deep dive into the technology and types of algorithms available, that’s about all you really need to know. I’ll let you choose whether to remember it as three simple steps or exactly 69 words.

One other important feature is the application of real time bidding. Let’s have a super speedy look at that.

How does real-time bidding fit in?

You’ll recognise real-time bidding from platforms such as Google’s Ad Words, and a bunch of other digital advertising.

It’s a relatively straight-forward concept:

Ad slots are set up to be auctioned off to the highest bidder.
As the name suggests, the bidding happens in real time, meaning that the highest bidder at any given point in time will win.
In most cases, you are given the ability to choose your demographic, location, time of day, or all of the above. It gives you flexibility in who sees your ad and how much of your campaign budget is put towards it.

Because programmatic advertising is virtually instant, real-time bidding can be applied to just about any digital media, including billboards and other out-of-home displays.

It’s a popular option because it’s a win-win situation for everyone.

Sellers get increased reach and become more accessible to everyday consumers. They can fill up their vacancies or even prioritise bidding to maximise their profits.

Buyers gain a lot of flexibility with regards to their campaign budgets and don’t need to commit to minimum length contracts. They also have more control over the audience that sees their ads and can more easily maximise their return on investment. All-in-all, it can be a much more affordable option if you want to run highly targeted, short or sporadic campaigns.

Quick access for buyer and easy sales for sellers are already a good enough reason to go programmatic, but if you add real-time bidding to the mix it’s even more enticing.

Let's wrap it up.

Learning point no. 1:  Programmatic advertising is buying and selling ad space using a computer program.

Learning point no. 2:  It works because the inventory is all stuffed into one place to be bought and sold with ease.

Learning point no.3:  The “program” in programmatic comes from algorithms (or magic) behind what is referred to as a demand-side platform (for buyers) and supply-side platform (for sellers). The platforms talk to each other to facilitate sales.

Learning point no. 4:  Real-time bidding takes programmatic advertising from “That makes sense” to a “huh, that’s a kind of cool”, and if used correctly can benefit every party involved.