Challenging the Limits of Programmatic Advertising: Beyond the Screen

The world of digital advertising has never been static. Every year we’ve seen new functionality and new players entering. But 2023 has brought significant changes in the way we connect with audiences. We already knew that one of the trends this year would be Programmatic Advertising.

Over the last few months, we have witnessed its metamorphosis. Advertisers, agencies and media alike have experienced an evolution in the way they run their campaigns; Programmatic Advertising is increasingly driven by artificial intelligence (AI), figuring out how we can reach new audiences.

In this context, targeting has emerged as an invaluable resource. Advertisers are increasingly aware of the importance of being able to deliver their advertising message precisely at the most propitious time. This strategic approach translates into more efficient resource management and greater campaign effectiveness by minimising wasted impressions and maximising interaction with the target audience. Conventional screens, far from becoming obsolete, are undergoing a technology-driven renewal. They are adapting to the current needs of the market and are becoming an additional support to deliberately impact the target audience of the campaign they are displaying.

Specific segmentation is vital for the survival of this model, given that 78% of advertisers consider it to be the main benefit, according to the latest study published by IAB Spain. This targeting is not only focused on mobile devices and computers, but it is also crossing screens and venturing into new areas such as Digital Out Of Home (DOOH), Podcast or even Connected TV (CTV). For example, by the end of 2023, DOOH ad spend is expected to increase by up to 45%.

It is key to move towards more interaction with the audience as programmatic advertising is not only a display tool, but also an engagement tool. This interaction has become essential in a constantly evolving digital environment, where user attention is a valuable resource. Programmatic advertising allows advertisers to create highly interactive campaigns, using everything from chatbots to personalised ads and other forms of real-time engagement. It is essential to deliver a more engaging and relevant experience, differentiate from the noise, and build stronger audience relationships that translate into conversions.

Innovation in impact: redefining programmatic advertising

As we have discussed, targeting is vital to this model of buying strategy. It allows you to reach new audiences and tailor your message at the right time. It is an environment that has never stopped evolving and has always stood out as one of the biggest driving forces in improving the user experience. In an environment flooded with ads, the targeting approach has led to improved campaign KPIs for any advertiser that has had the opportunity to test this buying model.

Not only should we limit ourselves to audience targeting, but we can optimise advertising based on the device from which the user is being exposed, such as computers, mobiles or tablets. This impact is going beyond the boundaries of conventional, news sites or social networks. The latest trend is how advertising space in video games can be bought programmatically, benefiting the advertiser and improving the player’s experience. These ads are tailored to the interests and behaviours of gamers, which increases brand interaction and retention, ensuring that ads are non-invasive and accepted by the audience.

Changing the rules of the game: Conventional screens get a makeover

Advertisers can move their message to strategic locations, increasing the effectiveness of their campaigns and qualifying the audience being targeted. Programmatic advertising is moving into new frontiers and has expanded into areas such as DOOH, CTV and audio advertising. In these environments, precise targeting and real-time strategies (Real Time Marketing) continue to be the pillars for improving the efficiency and relevance of campaigns, providing an impact that has an impact on the engagement and recall of the campaign.

In DOOH, they are offering new opportunities to generate greater dynamism in support, outside of conventional planning. The flexibility of programmatic allows advertisers to take full advantage of the dynamics of digital ‘billboard’ ads, enabling real-time messaging to deliver messages to highly qualified audiences, giving greater relevance to the message.

This year we have seen audio being the biggest beneficiary of programmatic advertising. The flexibility and scalable personalisation capability allows advertisers to reach listeners with highly relevant messages. We are already thinking about podcasts and streaming radio, with more advanced targeting ensuring audio ads reach interested listeners, reinforcing brand awareness and minimising wasted impact.

Finally, as we approach 2024, we see that connected TV has established itself as an advertising channel to help grow the coverage that Linear TV is losing. In addition, the possibility of programmatic buying allows us to focus our efforts on those households that are really part of the consumption or service target. In 2023, we have seen Netflix enter the equation and by 2024, Disney+ and HBO Max are expected to enter the mix, further expanding the options for advertisers.


Shaping the future: shaping changing audiences

This continued growth and opportunity presented by the programmatic environment is not exempt of challenges. As we approach 2024, a new concern is on the horizon: the imminent demise of third-party cookies in browsers, led by Chrome and followed by others. According to Adform’s latest survey data, more than 60% of advertisers are not yet fully aware of the solutions available to replace this technology, posing a significant challenge for the industry.

The disappearance of third-party cookies has led the industry to find alternative solutions that do not affect the performance of their advertisers’ campaigns. Machine learning, predictive modelling and contextual targeting, among others, are already real alternatives that are being used to counteract the loss of this technology. As a result, programmatic advertising continues to adapt, providing effective solutions to campaigns:

Advanced targeting: Targeting will be a fundamental pillar of programmatic advertising. Through consumer preferences, demographics and predictive behaviour, we will be able to identify potential customers for brands.

Omnichannel: Advertisers seek to optimise every impact they make. This requires unified strategies and creative adapted to each channel, from mobile devices to DOOH or CTV screens.

New players in programmatic advertising: Current CTV consumption is evolving rapidly and with the emergence of advertising space on streaming services that have greater household penetration, there are exciting opportunities for advertisers to generate qualified impacts.

Advanced measurement: Campaign metrics will become more accurate, enabling more effective evaluation of advertising performance to make better decisions.

It is a fact that Programmatic Advertising is at an exciting and transformative moment at all levels. With the influence of Artificial Intelligence and the constant expansion of new channels, it is evolving to anticipate the needs of advertisers. This rapidly changing environment provides an opportunity to innovate and find creative and effective solutions to stand out from the constant advertising noise.

Programmatic advertising is no longer just a trend, it is driving innovation and making the difference in digital advertising, going beyond the screen and, to take advantage of the potential of this form of advertising, advertisers should focus on targeting, personalisation and interactivity, mainly.