2021 Ad-Buying Changes Ensure Placement On Safe Havens

Peer39 built and released brand-safety controls around the 4As and GARM suitability framework that give advertisers greater control over where their advertisements are placed across the internet and the type of content that appears alongside them. 

“Brands know advertising funds content, and they want to ensure their money doesn't go to bad places,” said Peer39 CEO Mario Diez. “The industry needs to ensure this happens. It's all part of the initiative for global responsible media.”

Peer39 made the technology for ad placement through controls on demand-side platforms from Amobee, MediaMath, Verizon Media, and Xandr.  

The 4As and GARM framework created a new set of contextual-advertising categories for placement, and expanded on others. Some of these categories include arms and ammunition, death and military conflict. Within each category there are various levels of risk.

The change offers brands stricter controls for ad placement across the internet on publisher sites.



In addition to stricter controls, Peer39 now publishes a monthly benchmark report — The Monthly GARM Suitability Insights — to help buyers plan and understand how the controls impact available programmatic inventory and volumes.

It's not about blocking keywords, but rather assessing risk levels across different contextual advertising categories. Buyers now have controls to identify whether to bid or not in the context of a breaking news story. 

These advanced targeting controls create a new approach. One risk category that Peer39 rolled out is "Sensitive and Socially Debated Issues."

Today, nearly 7% of Arts and Entertainment content and 12.7% of Societal content falls into this contextual bucket, and would likely be blocked by brands that don't want to associate with it amidst the focus on social justice and civil rights.

Since the content is related to entertainment coverage, it represents a hidden buying opportunity.

The definitions also serve as key settings for publishers that may have experienced over-blocking to advise their buyers when setting up their controls for placement.

Content that meets the criteria for the newly created category of Sensitive and Socially Debated issues may meet the suitability standards for some brands, but not others. Nearly 7% of Arts and Entertainment content and 12.7% of Societal content is classified this way.

In the November 2020 insight report, brands will find that a significant amount of inventory in nearly every content category falls under the classification of “crime and harmful acts.” This reveals the depth of opportunity available to brands that adopt nuanced strategies.

Here's how it works: The suitability framework leverages Peer39’s advanced semantic classification data, allowing brands to specifically choose the type of content and risk profile that suits their targeting. Buyers can set medium-risk and low-risk suitability controls.

Buyers, for example, selecting “medium risk” as their acceptable suitability setting for content related to death within the News content category will gain access to inventory that meets that suitability standard, rather than outright blocking anything related to crime and death.

In early research, this setting has opened up 18.7% more volume for a brand to buy across the News category.

The content categories subject to the suitability controls are:

  • Adult and explicit sexual content
  • Arms and ammunition
  • Crime and harmful acts to individuals, society and human rights violations
  • Death, injury or military conflict
  • Online piracy
  • Hate speech 
  • Obscenity and profanity
  • Illegal drugs, tobacco, eCigarettes, vaping
  • Spam or harmful content
  • Terrorism
  • Debated sensitive social issues such as climate control, electoral college, abortion
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