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Anudit Vikram is a featured contributor to Programmatic Advertising: A Modern Marketer's Definitive Guide report.

Here's the complete contribution:

There are many ongoing things such as first-price auctions, header bidding, and people-based advertising which are forcing changes in the way programmatic is executed. But if we are to put a slightly different lens on changes coming about, the management of the ad supply chain and its impact on transparency and fraud are worth discussing. From a tech perspective, blockchain technology and its derivative uses are coming into play to solve for this.

Transparency will shift from a nice-to-have to a need-to-have. Marketers have hundreds – even thousands – of partners that touch their ads before they actually are displayed on a website or device. The challenge is adding transparency to the process: making sure your partners are legitimate actors and that you’re avoiding fraudulent traffic.

Common standards and a high level of partner accountability are what is going to become increasingly vital to the growth and health of this space. Mastering control of your data is a necessary first step to this process. Companies such as the Trustworthy Accountability Group are already at work on this, allowing marketers better control of their ad supply chain.

Let us look at this from the viewpoint of what it takes to implement the controls. A huge factor in having the controls is having the right data, which can allow you to define and implement the controls. With the explosion of the data economy, so much of marketing technology is dependent on data, and when that data becomes more accurate and holistic, it becomes even more valuable.

And then there is the rise of fake news and the upheaval of public trust. Brands and consumers are realizing how opaque the systems are that serve ads or provide users with information. They are also realizing how easy it is for a bad actor to carry out disruptive motions.

The good news is that the first should help fix the second. Better data helps marketers create a watertight loop, helping them run more efficient campaigns that impact business results. The advancements in technology allows us to put the data we have to the right use cases much more easily now than we could in the past.

We’ll see better transparency and reduced fraud in the future because we’re at a lucky intersection: there’s demand for a resolution and the data and technology to be able to build viable solutions.

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