Did Viewability Just Kill The Romance Between Ad Tech And Digital Marketing?

Every CMO I talk usually shares the same view of ad tech. it's talked up in the press, and at every conference you attend a bright spark will tell you the five things you should be doing if you weren't such a luddite. It leads to endless calls and pitches from vendors, making marketers wary of picking up the phone to a Millennial who can tell them exactly where they're going wrong. 

Add to that a more worrisome overall view. This shiny new technology is starting to lose its appeal. A massive 85% of marketers still think ad tech provides ROI, but it has to be mentioned that this is down from 95% a year ago, according to the latest figures from ExchangeWire Research and OpenX. Forget differences of opinion over which vendor or software suite should be employed. Some marketers are already starting to question the whole genre, not just the name on the box. 

There is the age-old issue of brands and media buyers not being entirely sure of the quality of the sites their ads are sent off to, but the huge sticking point would appear to be the associated issue of viewability. It seems more in the media industry are wondering whether to believe viewabiilty rates that are believed to have dipped below the 50% mark. A dwindling number -- less than one in five -- find viewability levels in the mid 40% bracket to be acceptable, meaning that four in five marketers can be considered to believe that ad tech is not delivering on its promise. A growing number of marketers are stating they will only accept a viewability of 80% or more. 

Ad tech guys can breathe a sigh of relief that programmatic trading is generally trusted, but to curb a growing feeling that ad tech is not delivering required viewability levels, there is much work to be done. The tone of the research is effectively marketers still marvelling at automated buying but raising an objection that the admiration stops when their messages are sprayed to parts of web pages where nobody stands a chance of seeing them.

I have a feeling that this is going to play out a little better than some may fear. By the end of the year, the IAB UK is due to have a certification process in place for viewability vendors. It will enable brands and agencies to pick a supplier based not just on a slick pitch but on the IAB UK certifying that the actually are a trustworthy vendor. Then at least informed choices can be made on how to tackle the elephant in the room that is beginning to take the shine off the industry's whirlwind romance with ad tech.

1 comment about "Did Viewability Just Kill The Romance Between Ad Tech And Digital Marketing?".
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  1. Gary milner from The Simpler Way, September 12, 2016 at 12:02 p.m.

    Careful everyone, direct buy viewability isn't always what you think, I've seen equally bad performance their. Many use audience extension off site to make their numbers. Add in geo targeting issues where your ads may go the wrong country makes this worse. Ad tech isn't the issue it's the industry..

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