RTBlog spoke with Charlie Fiordalis, chief digital officer of media agency Media Storm, about such issues as viewability, ad blocking and data integration.
Fiordalis said digital media will begin moving toward a viewable time spent currency so that all publishers can be compared and optimized on an even playing field. "Optimization starts with apples-to-apples comparisons. Comparing a three second view in Facebook to Snapchat, the initial load, to YouTube--15- or 30-second videos--is inherently problematic. Publishers define views differently, but media planners need to evaluate them side-by-side. Digital will move toward a simplified Viewable CPM currency (i.e. cost for each second of viewable exposure) so we can make a direct second-by-second comparisons between publishers for effective optimization."
On ad blocking: "The ad blocking wars will continue but the ultimate solution is for advertising to be less annoying and more useful. Publishers will fight back against ad blocking by preventing access to content on their sites for any person who has turned on an ad blocker." Fiordalis said that Facebook will lead the battle against ad blocking companies by escalating coding countermeasures. While he thinks both tactics will be effective, the real solution, ultimately, "is to reduce the number of online ads, increase their quality and effectiveness, and stop annoying people" with irrelevant, un-targeted messages.
Notably, he said that vertical integration will create rivals to Facebook and Google. This is hard to imagine. "At their core, Google and Facebook are vertically integrated systems combining data, media and creative. Millions of people are logged into Facebook and Google on multiple devices, visit their properties multiple times per day and are reached by tailored creative based on behaviors." He said that he expects to see more vertical integration combining data, media, and creative that will help create viable competitors to Google and Facebook. One example, he said, is Adobe’s acquisition of TubeMogul in late 2016, which points to a consolidation trend in 2017.