We’re still in the early days of programmatic

Digital advertising is relatively young, and that means programmatic buying and selling is still in its infancy. Even for buyers who already use open RTB, automated guaranteed or private marketplaces, many are in test-driving mode. Buyers using their agency trading desk or an approved DSP are trying to determine how to improve their targeting, save money or optimize their buys for clients.

Despite the lack of clarity around programmatic “best practices,” buyers are allocating resources to these buying channels. According to AdExchanger, the majority of marketers are managing at least 20% of their ad spend programmatically. More telling though is that almost two-thirds plan to double their programmatic ad spend over the next 12 months.

The last few years have definitely seen some growing pains in the industry. In 2015, there will probably still be mistakes, broken campaigns and some fear around programmatic. But what’s important to remember is that the so-called early days of programmatic will not last long. The way the industry is evolving, programmatic will become commonplaceMagna forecasts that programmatic ad buying will reach $53 billion by 2018.

Brands and agencies must embrace the fundamentals of programmatic now as well as the different providers and capabilities. Agility, nimbleness and flexibility are key qualities for buyers in 2015. It’s time to try and test new technologies, platforms and buying methods. That may be only way to truly understand how programmatic buying fits and best works for your brand.

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