Staff Writer
Jun 28, 2018

Japan’s whirlwind adoption of programmatic

With digital advertising on the upswing and more resources than ever being put towards data-driven marketing, programmatic is making its mark on Japan.

The Programmatic Summit 2017, the 2018 iteration is set to expand on the inaugural event's insights.
The Programmatic Summit 2017, the 2018 iteration is set to expand on the inaugural event's insights.
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The explosion of programmatic advertising in Japan is undeniable. Last year, 37 percent of revenue from digital advertising was generated from programmatic. In 2018, that split is set to grow to 42 percent, and by 2022, it’s estimated that 62 percent of revenue will be attributed to programmatic. The drastic tipping of the digital scale towards programmatic might come as a surprise, but with US$11,353,000 of total revenue in the digital advertising market expected in 2018 (the fourth-highest globally), the time to jump aboard is now.

Key ingredients for growth

Several factors have aided Japan in becoming a hotbed for programmatic growth. For one, according to a PwC study, the media market as a whole is set to balloon to US$170 billion by 2020.

Locally, the importance of accountability has always been key for marketing in Japan, and programmatic’s ability to offer simple, visible ROI meshes well with this push for transparency. The country’s enthusiasm towards new innovation has also opened the door for the medium.

When it comes to advertising channels, TV and mobile should serve as promising avenues for programmatic growth in Japan, especially if the US market serves as any indicator. Mobile internet in particular has grown at a steady pace, with an estimated 60 percent penetration rate in 2018 set to climb even further in the years ahead, and 40 percent of total revenue in digital advertising expected to be generated through mobile in 2022.

The Olympic Games in 2020 should serve as another massive spark for advertising in the country. The Olympics have long served as the brand grandstand for entering new markets and strengthening reputation, and if the upward trend of programmatic spend continues, it’s not difficult to imagine the impact the event will have.

In a testament to the country’s prime environment for growth in the sector, several burgeoning programmatic companies have entered Japan’s market. The Trade Desk, one of the first players to expand operations there, will be holding the second annual Programmatic Summit on 10 July to explore Japan’s local growth, as well as transparency, brand safety, cross-industry collaboration and data-driven media buying, among other topics.

The event serves as both a primer for brand marketers seeking a better understanding of programmatic and the current state of play, and a deep-dive into more advanced elements of programmatic. For those interested in attending, seats are still available.

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