Display Advertising- – What’s Next? VisualDNA at Figaro Digital

Yesterday I was fortunate enough to speak at Figaro Digital’s Display Advertising Seminar at London’s Hospital Club, on how innovation in advertising is changing the market.

It’s an area that’s undergone dramatic change in the last 5 years as the web has matured and in particular over the last 3 years with the rise of real-time bidding, primarily in the UK and US. We expect this change to accelerate in the next 12 months.

A big part of what VisualDNA does is provide data that allows advertisers to reach very specific audiences. The data market is growing fast and has many providers: mass and niche. But what makes us different is the lengths we go to understand people: rather than guess what a person might buy by crunching reams of second-hand big data, we build a rich picture of who they are, and why they do what they do, by asking them first-hand through an online personality quiz.

We are able to successfully scale these rich profiles across our vast publisher network, 150m cookied users globally – which puts us in the unique position of being able to help advertisers reach large number of consumers on an emotive level, not just demographics or inferred purchase intent.

During my talk I touched on three big things driving change in display advertising:

1. RTB platforms are innovating upmarket
Having started out with a focus on buying remnant inventory cheaply and at scale, the media buying platforms are innovating themselves upmarket. It’s possible now to seamlessly manage entire campaigns through these platforms and put data-driven advertising at the heart of a campaign. They are grabbing a bigger share of the display-ad pie, and making the process more sophisticated: great for data providers such as ourselves.

2. Brands are looking beyond demographics
Media companies recognise that consumers can no longer be conveniently bundled into old-school demographic groups – which is why creative agencies develop sophisticated segmenations based on who people are (emotionally) and why they behave in the way they do at any given time. But yet most media buying is about guessing which demographics and vertical segments match emotional profiles. This is changing – VisualDNA is already innovating here with emotive segmentations but we can expect newer solutions as the market moves to meet brands’ desire to move beyond demographics.

3. Data is the media buyers’ secret weapon
When all that matters to trading desks is performance vs CPMs, it’s tempting to dismiss data and buy on price alone. Used well, data is worth the money and delivers results for clients – but can be confusing or daunting if you don’t know how to use it.

But if targeting the 10% most likely to convert makes that segment 10 times more valuable, it’s easily worth paying twice the price and buyers are getting better at optimising their campaigns. With more buyers working out how to use data, demand will filter up the chain – motivating agencies to be even more innovative in their creative. Data is the media buyer’s secret weapon — but only if you take the time and resource into testing.

Want to see more? You can view our Prezi here.

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