Brands Plan For More Programmatic Spend, But Agency Trust Issues Still Lurk

Three-fourths of brand marketers plan to increase their programmatic budgets this year, citing an increase in sales, the ability to personalize ads and the ability to use CRM data as three key reasons why.

The data comes from Infectious Media, a programmatic-focused ad agency. While inquiries regarding the method and how the survey was conducted were not immediately answered, Infectious Media says it surveyed 200 digital marketers from brands on programmatic advertising in general. Topics covered included spend plans and challenges faced.

Nearly two-thirds (65%) of respondents said a lack of transparency is the main barrier to even more programmatic spend.

“Although marketers plan to put more investment into programmatic, it’s clear transparency is still an issue,” stated Martin Kelly, CEO and co-founder of Infectious Media.

Other barriers include the complexity of the ecosystem (cited by 55% of respondents), a lack of “appropriate” measurements (50%) and a lack of trust in agency relationships (45%).

The latter issue -- agency trust -- has been a hotly debated topic in 2015.

Pivotal Research Senior Analyst Brian Wieser even recently urged investors to exit the advertising sector based on the “emerging concerns among marketers around different forms of agency rebates in the United States.” After the advice, the stock of several large holding companies slid for several days.

A study released last week by the Association of National Advertisers suggests that the issue of shaky agency-brand relationships is not going away any time soon.

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