Q&A: Key Steps in Implementing a Programmatic Ad Business
[Sponsored]: BPA’s Scott Roulet discusses action steps and FAQs for driving new revenue through BPA’s B2B Media Exchange.
BPA has just rolled out a programmatic ad network, designed to provide access for B2B media companies to programmatic advertising dollars, and to increase leverage and scale for participants. The platform is a collective, allowing individual members who may not have the reach or resources to join forces and tap into what is the country’s fastest-growing source of advertising revenue. Here, Scott answers questions and provides context around what to do and why you should do it.
Folio: What is involved in vetting my inventory for the additional requirements to address of viewability and ad fraud human traffic?
Scott Roulet: First, BPA audits the website stats. That is followed by our brand-safety verification which uses MRC accredited technologies…including Integral Ad Science and Pixilate through our alliance with PulsePoint [BPA’s technology partner], which powers our exchange.
Folio: How do sales work on the exchange?
Roulet: There are multiple channels, but the most important sales channel is the publisher. The principal objective of our exchange is to enable B2B publishers with programmatic capabilities that connect B2B marketers with qualified media. Publishers are losing revenue from some of their largest advertisers as digital budgets shift to programmatic solutions. Our media exchange provides a solution that will recapture those budgets. In addition to the owned-and-operated inventory, publishers will leverage enhanced first-party data across the exchange as an audience extension for their customers.
PulsePoint has two teams driving demand. The DSP team focuses on promoting unique packages that can be accessed through the demand-side platform. And the agency sales team focuses on securing specific campaigns. First-party audience segments will be introduced in Q4, and that will open additional sales channels.
Folio: What kind of CPMs can we expect?
Roulet: Publisher-sold campaigns against O&O inventory are consistent with current rates and pricing models. The addition of first-party data will enable publishers to expand the reach for their endemic advertisers by targeting selected segments across the exchange. Most publishers run these audience extensions around 25% of website rate card.
Indirect business via PulsePoint channels will have publisher-controlled floor prices. Endemic advertisers looking for reach across a vertical will typically buy at slightly discounted rates for non-reserved inventory. Market demand for non-endemic advertisers is usually lower double digits and that will increase with first-party publisher data and performance against the KPIs.
Folio: How is data deployed and how is it protected?
Roulet: Buyers can deploy their first-, second- and third-party data via their DSP. In Q4, we’ll have a DMP that will capture and organize publishers’ first-party data. We’re going through the vetting process with DMP vendors now and compliance with industry standard protection is a key requirement.
Folio: Can a publisher exclude the competition from sales?
Roulet: Yes, the platform has a feature for managing block lists. However, we encourage publishers to participate with non-competitive third-pub sales that bid on inventory as part of an audience extension.
Folio: Is the network only open to BPA-audited brands?
Roulet: Publisher websites must be audited by BPA. However, print audits are not a requirement. We have a business model for website-only audited members.
Folio: Is this only for unused inventory or can we build premium opportunities?
Roulet: This is about enabling programmatic revenue for both direct and in-direct advertisers.
Folio: What is the value proposition for publishers?
Roulet: They can increase digital ad revenue with existing clients with programmatic budgets. They can gain exposure to new advertisers. They can expand reach by leveraging audience across qualified third-party media. They can improve operational efficiencies by eliminating many of the administrative functions associated with trafficking campaigns and reporting.
Folio: What is the value proposition for advertisers?
Roulet: There are many. The quality of our participating web properties meets strict standards, with industry-leading measurement tools. We offer audience verification; brand safety; screening for viewability and against non-human traffic; and also a content code of conduct. We offer improved targeting capabilities that enhance campaign performance; contextually relevant content that aligns with marketers’ brands, products or services; rich analytics and efficient operations.
Folio: How does a media company protect its CPMs across the network? What is the pricing model?
Roulet: Specialty publishers like B2B media have difficulties with open auction RTB programmatic models that thrive on large scale, commodity rates and minimal publisher control. Private exchanges or marketplaces give publishers control over pricing and advertising appearing on their sites. BPA’s exchange is private and all buyers must be granted an invitation. The direct-guarantee model allows publishers and advertisers to leverage the benefits of automation, while preserving existing rates and models. This is true of BPA’s B2B Media Exchange.
Scott Roulet joined BPA in March 2017 as Vice President, B2B Media Exchange. During his 30-year career, Scott has led digital media and business information organizations around the world. He co-founded BBN, the first large scale B2B digital ad networks. Roulet has advised leading media organizations including American City Business Journals and Kantar in areas of developing scalable solutions for advertising automation, audience data enhancement and advertising sales. Scott can be reached at SRoulet@bpaww.com.