B2B Marketers Adopting Programmatic, But Seek More Than Audience Targeting

Kantar Media joint study with Connectiv finds that 63% of respondents bought B2B digital display advertising programmatically in past 12 months

New York, NY, May 23 — Kantar Media, a global leader in media intelligence, today announced a joint survey with Connectiv (the Business Information Association, a division of SIIA) that showed while business-to-business marketers are quickly adopting programmatic advertising, concerns remain around scale and inventory quality.

The study, “B2B Programmatic Media Planning and Buying,” found that on average digital media made up 48% of B2B campaigns that respondents worked on over the past 12 months. Within those campaigns, 63% of respondents said they bought digital display advertising programmatically, compared to 73% for B2C.

“B2B advertisers aren’t as far behind in programmatic adoption as some might think,” says Stephen Davis, president of Kantar Media SRDS.

While respondents cited “audience” as the most important criteria used when evaluating programmatic buying opportunities for B2B digital display advertising, the study showed that programmatic audience targeting alone isn’t sufficient for B2B buyers. 76% of respondents use both audience and site/content targeting for B2B, perhaps reflecting the long-held assumption that B2B media are still uniquely positioned to offer specialized content and difficult-to-find targets. The next highest-rated evaluation criteria included inventory quality, site content and viewability.

While 71% of respondents agreed that programmatic B2B “inventory is less expensive than buying direct from the publisher,” price was considered the second-least important evaluation criteria for B2B campaigns.

“B2B can still command premium pricing, even in a programmatic environment,” says Mike Marchesano, Managing Director of Connectiv. “Buyers acknowledge their need to pay a premium for these hard-to-reach audiences alongside B2B editorial; however, the study suggests that right now they appear to also be turning to consumer sites in order to achieve the scale they need.” Data from the study show that 66% of respondents reported using both B2B and B2C sites for B2B campaigns.

Davis concludes: “This research confirms that programmatic adoption by B2B marketers continues to grow, and marketer demand to buy targeted B2B audiences will increase as budgets move from print and online display advertising channels.”

Survey respondents included 150 media planners and buyers with responsibility for researching, recommending, planning or buying business-to-business media. Full results are available to Connectiv members or by visiting www.srds.com/connectiv.

About Kantar Media

Kantar Media is a global leader in media intelligence, providing clients with the data they need to make informed decisions on all aspects of media measurement, monitoring and selection. Part of Kantar, the data investment management arm of WPP, Kantar Media provides the most comprehensive and accurate intelligence on media consumption, performance and value.

For further information, please visit us at www.kantarmedia.com

You might also be interested in...

B2B Buyers Ready For Programmatic, But Pubs Still Catching Up
Read more
Digital Media (thumbnail)
Asking the big questions how to avoid programmatic pitfalls and protect advertiser investment
Read more