David Chen
Jun 7, 2016

Publicis Media: Programmatic buying is walking into its transition

Programmatic buying in China is poised to break through its plateau and enter an exciting new phase of development, writes Publicis Media's David Chen.

Publicis Media: Programmatic buying is walking into its transition

The China market has been seeing the sustained growth of programmatic buying since 2012, albeit at a decreasing pace. Many marketers today in China are feeling that programmatic seems to have hit a plateau. But we perceived that programmatic is walking into its transition phase, with massive opportunities.

Programmatic penetrating in traditional channels

Data is the core of programmatic. If we keep on integrating data across different platforms and sources, it becomes not only a powerful engine to instruct programmatic or digital campaigns to be successful but also a great lever for overarching marketing strategy. On the other hand, what marketers need is an integrated approach to plan all marketing channels, including TV, outdoor and digital in order to follow the full cycle of the consumer journey. 

We believe programmatic is transforming to become a methodology, which can be applied in traditional channels such as TV and outdoor. In fact, as being on-the-way and at home make up over two-thirds of one’s daily life, it is equally important to analyse data for consumers when they are at home and out-of-home. 

Our recent product release enabled programmatic for smart TV (OTT), which creates a cohesive solution to target consumers and deliver tailored messages in their living rooms.

We have found smart TV can be an effective channel to bring users from awareness to consideration. What’s more, we can decipher devices and behaviour through carrier data. And it unlocks the potential of smart TV to be an approach for performance-driven campaigns. For example, a consumer put eyeliner in her shopping cart on an ecommerce site after she saw an online ad we displayed to her. But she was distracted and didn’t complete the purchase. With the OTT solution, marketers can re-engage with the consumer by displaying an ad with a QR code on the screen while she is watching TV at home after work. Scanning the QR code directs the consumer back to the ecommerce site, so it acts as a reminder to follow through on her purchase of the eyeliner. The result: a higher conversion rate due a seamless integration of marketing and commerce platform. 

And it’s not just smart TV: most traditional channels can utilise data-driven solutions and procure programmatically, opening up considerable opportunities.

Publicis Media's AOD platform allows advertisers to create, run, measure and optimise campaigns in real time

Simplify through unification

Data may be the core of the programmatic world, but previously it was fragmented. With the adoption of DMPs, marketers and advertisers are able to manage and use their data assets to tailor campaigns.

Not every brand can or even wants to adopt a DMP managing multiple data sources to empower marketing. Still, they run lots of campaigns. If advertisers cannot manage campaigns properly, there is a loss of insight.

What we did was to transform campaign-based business into platform business—we provide advertisers with a unified platform. We call this our AOD (Audience On Demand) platform. Advertisers can create, run, measure, and optimise their campaigns in real time with this platform. You can easily select the optimal solution and inventory that we recommend automatically when you create a new campaign. You can then manage it across DSPs with a standard view and optimise it according to historical campaign performance. This could produce efficiencies at scale by saving 30 percent of the hours spent on campaign operations.

Technically, this platform is ready to integrate with client’s DMP and other third-party platforms to bring a holistic view of and access to your audience. Marketers can harness their data to empower every decision with insight—not just about the right time, right audience and right place, but about how to tailor the message to interact with a specific audience. 

Programmatic in China is breaking through its plateau. And data-driven solutions could bring programmatic to all media channels. The opportunity is there to engage consumers in every scenario and craft their experiences more smartly with one unified approach.

David Chen is managing director, data, technology and innovation, Publicis Media Greater China


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