Here’s a projection put into perspective: IPG Mediabrands’ Magna Global recently predicted that U.S. marketers will spend $10 billion of their TV ad budgets through programmatic channels by 2019 -- including both audience-buying and household addressable.
For comparison, the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) released its first-ever programmatic revenue report on Monday, revealing that U.S. marketers spent $10.1 billion through programmatic ad technologies this year in the digital display market.
In other words, what programmatic was to display in 2014, it will be to TV in 2019. There are some differences, sure -- $10.1 billion of digital spend in 2014 represented 52% of the display market, while $10 billion TV spend in 2019 will only represent about 17% of the television market -- but in terms of spend, we now have a benchmark (from the IAB) to compare to a projection (from IPG), and they line up perfectly.
Actually, the notion that today’s programmatic display would catch up to tomorrow’s programmatic TV at some point in the next five or so years has been around for a while. In an RTBlog last year, I wrote that what RTB was to online display advertising in 2013, programmatic would be to television in 2018. However, that comparison dealt with percentages, while this IAB-IPG link deals with hard spend numbers. Why that's important: 20% of spend in one market is not equal to 20% spend in another, but $10 billion is $10 billion both here and there.
So tuck this one away. Programmatic spend in the display market won’t hover around the $10 billion mark for much longer -- in fact, eMarketer is anticipating it to rise to $20 billion by 2016 -- but according to projections, you’ll experience déjà vu in a few years. How invested you feel in programmatic display today is how you’ll feel about programmatic TV in 2019.