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Flyby users: How to engage and create brand enthusiasts

Adi Pinco, February 16, 2022

Key Takeaways:

  • Use differing strategies to engage flyby users and loyal visitors.
  • First impressions like site speed and UX can convert or turn off flyby users.
  • Monetize loyal users based on collected data and subscription services.
flyby, flybye users, total media solutions, brand, marketing, quick website decisions

A website visitor is a website visitor, right?


Flyby users and brand loyalists are different creatures altogether; they arrive at your site differently, have different expectations, and engage differently. While some might brush off flyby users as not worth their time, that would be a mistake. Flyby users can become loyalists, and loyalists can become brand enthusiasts with the right strategies.  

In this article, we’ll look at the differences between these two groups of users and the techniques you can employ to convert them to the next level of readership.

Strategies to convert flyby users

As the name suggests, flyby users are visitors who fly by your site. Most likely, they aren’t familiar with your site or, if they are, they have yet to find a reason to visit it without a prompt. They usually arrive from a social media post, app content, search, or another channel, scan an article, and bounce. By focusing on a few website elements and offering an optimized experience, you can convert them into loyal visitors who seek out your content.

Flyby users might read an article from start to finish, but it’s more likely they will scan the article and bounce near the page’s halfway mark unless your content really resonates with them. While you don’t know a lot about this user, you know they are interested in a specific topic and could be open to reading more about it in another article. You can demonstrate your knowledge and breadth of content on that topic by adding internal links or highlighting a related article with a mid-article campaign.

Make a good first impression (a.k.a. UX)

Although we like to think that people take their time and don’t jump to conclusions, data shows that’s not the case. Website visitors make a conscious impression about your site in just 2.6 seconds, and 94% of that impression is design-related.

Since it’s the user’s first or second time visiting your site, they must be greeted with a clean layout, great design, and a navigation menu that’s easy to find and use. A search bar can also encourage users to explore your site in a way that makes sense to them. The publishing industry has talked extensively about the need to offer a great user experience (UX), and nothing could be more important for a first-time visitor.

The need for speed

Speaking of good experiences, did you know that 53% of mobile users will leave a site if it takes longer than three seconds to load? Since mobile is increasingly becoming more dominant, slow loading pages will all but guarantee flyby users are never coming back. Luckily there are plenty of tools to check your site’s speed, including Google’s Lighthouse and GTmetrix.

How to convert loyal users into brand enthusiasts

On the opposite side of the equation are loyal users. Every publisher will define this group differently, but what all loyal users have in common is that they seek out your site organically, know how to navigate it, and know what content to expect. It’s that familiarity that you can leverage and monetize as you turn them into brand enthusiasts.

Create a data-backed content strategy

Most likely, you are already collecting first-party data (if not, you need to be!) and analyzing user behavior in a platform such as FoxMetrics, HubSpot, Amplitude, or Quantcast. Check your data to see which pieces of content attract the most readers and earn the highest time on page, an equally important metric. That will indicate the types of stories that interest your audience the most and should provide a clear path for your content strategy in the future. It’s essential to continue to create content your audience will value in your brand’s voice as that is likely an aspect that attracted your users in the first place.  

Paywall the right way 

There’s some debate as to whether paywalls are a publisher’s best friend or worst enemy. Readers will only pay for so many subscription services, so you need to choose your paywall type carefully if you implement one. Hard paywalls, like the one used by Financial Times, are the riskiest strategy, especially if you are trying to grow your audience. The New York Times is a great example of a publisher that uses a soft or metered paywall to effectively build and convert its audience while monetizing. 

Dynamic paywalls are trickier to implement but are often highly effective as they ask readers to subscribe at the moments when they are most likely to convert. That said, if you can produce compelling and valuable content that strikes a chord with your audience, it’s one of the best ways to monetize them and turn them into brand enthusiasts much the same way New York Magazine does.

Converting users is a marathon, not a sprint

Developing and growing your audience is an ongoing process that boils down to data analysis and strategy implementations, both of which should be revisited and updated routinely. The relationships you have with your readers, like all human relationships, need to be nurtured, not hurried.

Flyby users represent an opportunity for growth; loyal users represent an opportunity for monetization. Now, that’s not to say you can’t monetize flyby users, but you should look to bring them into the fold as much as possible so you can learn more about them and gain more first-party data. The more you know about your audience, the better you can serve them. And, if you can prove that your audience has specialized interests or are loyal, engaged readers, your site will be more attractive to advertisers, earning you more revenue which is a top priority.

Need help with your user acquisition strategy or monetization efforts? 

6 publisher trends that will dominate 2022

Steve Myslinski, January 19, 2022

Key takeaways:

  • Publishers will look to diversify revenue streams further with commerce and interest-based newsletters.
  • A first-party data strategy is no longer nice to have but a necessity.
  • Demand for audio content will continue to grow.
2022, publisher trends

Life and business are in flux as we enter a third year of pandemic existence. While the Omicron strain threatens the routines we were just getting back to, 2022 doesn’t have to be all doom and gloom, especially for digital publishers who are used to adapting and evolving.

This year will see the continuation of several trends that have been building steam; some were spurred into action because of the pandemic and others because of technology and consumer demands (we’re looking at you, cookie deprecation!). If necessity is the mother of invention, this is a prime time for publishers to reinvent themselves.

Below are the six trends that we predict will lead the publishing industry this year.

1. Content-commerce collaborations increase 

Even before digital consumption dominated daily life, publishers used multiple revenue streams to support their business, including ads, advertorials, and subscriptions. Although advertising still generates the most revenue, publishers are embracing new revenue streams. According to Digiday, 64% of publishers rely on direct product sales as a revenue stream, and 72% say that affiliate marketing generates a part of their earnings.

Public trust in social media is at an all-time low. Consumers are spending more time on the open web, opening the door for publishers to leverage the trust they already have with audiences to sell them products. Although reports indicate 94% of publishers use affiliate marketing, we expect to see publishers produce more content that includes product recommendations from affiliate programs they are a part of and more direct sales deals with brands.

2. Diversified monetization strategy

According to eMarketer, digital advertising will continue to grow but not at the crazy record-setting pace of 2021. The pandemic taught us that no business, publishers included, should have all their revenue-generating eggs in one basket (or two when we consider commerce trends).

For publishers that haven’t yet jumped on the newsletter train, now is the time. Newsletters can help publishers develop deeper, direct relationships with readers. While that doesn’t offer an immediate financial payoff, a dedicated readership is attractive to brands that can advertise in it or sponsor it. In fact, the Washington Post was able to amass such consistent readership and a 40% open rate with their coronavirus newsletter, Slack, Salesforce, and Goldman Sachs all became sponsors.

Subscription models will continue to make a strong showing, but some consumers report feeling fatigued will all the content available on the open web, further noting that they prefer content-specific newsletters instead.

3. Consumers want to listen, not just read

Between audiobooks and podcasts, audio has captured consumers’ attention, or ears as the case may be. Edison Research found that some 80 million Americans listened to podcasts weekly in 2021, a 20% increase from 2020. Publishers can use audio to connect with audiences at times when users want to consume content but can’t read, like when they are driving.  

Top publishers including The New Yorker, The Economist, and The Atlantic all offer readers narrated articles, not in place of written content but in addition to it. Publishers interested in this booming trend can partner with a service to create narrated content versions (like we do) or monetize their audio content through revenue-sharing agreements with audio apps such as Audm.  

4. Capitalizing on a first-party data strategy

With the demise of the cookie looming on the horizon, current privacy regulations, and consumer-initiated tracking prevention, publishers need to reassess their data collection strategies. This isn’t news, but smaller publishers have been slower to implement strategies. We expect more of these publishers to adopt a few tried and tested collection methods this year, mainly because they are quick and easy to implement.  

People are motivated by value and trade-offs. Publishers can use premium content or exclusive promotions to incentivize audiences to share at least some data like an email address. Piggybacking on that, as logins will become more commonplace, so will simplified registrations and logins. Giving users the ability to sign in quickly with a social media or Google ID will cut friction and give publishers access to more data.

5. Readers influence content production 

Competition is becoming stiffer across every industry. To create brand loyalists, businesses are becoming more customer-centric, offering products, services, and solutions that speak to customer needs. Digital publishers are also taking this approach, analyzing traffic and data to see which stories get the most clicks and using that to inform their content strategy and production. With publishers now accumulating more first-party data, making those content decisions is even easier.

A number of publishers have been using questionnaires to gather information about what piques their audience’s interest, and we expect to see more publishers implement this tactic along with other engaging formats such as quizzes and polls. As a small example, a publisher could poll readers to determine how interested they would be in audio content before allocating a portion of their budget to creating it.

6. Continued focus on UX 

We mentioned that businesses are becoming customer-centric, and Google is no different. However, for Google, customer-centric, at least partially, equates to serving users content that delivers a great user experience (UX). 

Google will continue to ramp up its Web Vitals program, which means publishers will need to find ways to improve their sites, and those that have been slow to change will need to kick change into high gear. We expect to see some major site redesigns that improve page load times, stability, navigation, and the ad experience consumers see. We don’t know if Google will add new signals to its algorithm, but it’s best to optimize for the current signals, so should new ones be introduced, the workload is achievable. 

Looking at the year ahead

The reality is that no one can predict the future, which is both daunting and exciting. What publishers should do is prepare for knowable situations like the need for first-party data and the eventual loss of cookies. Beyond that, diversifying revenue streams with audio, newsletters, advertising and commerce can future-proof a company as much as possible. In the end, the advice is the same: test new strategies, evaluate what works, and optimize along the way.

If you have questions about how to implement any of these trends, get in touch with us.

About the author Steve Myslinski is the Senior Director of Sales for EMEA at Total Media Solutions and brings years of experience helping publishers realize their true potential for monetizing their inventory.

Starting out as an engineer in the automotive industry, before getting his MBA and joining the adtech industry, he provides a unique approach to sales with an analytical and problem solving style to addressing a publishers needs.

Find Steve on LinkedIn or reach him ">by email.

Google AdManager Update: Privacy and Messaging

Ryan Rakover, August 9, 2021

Facebook vs. Apple – Taking Challenging Steps to Achieving User Privacy – Total Media

Ryan Rakover, April 13, 2021

New on Display & Video 360 – Attribution Path Reporting

Gadi Elias, November 4, 2020

We all know the importance of attribution, it is basically what separates digital marketing from other media channels. It’s what helps us as media buyers to analyze & understand how our campaign really performed and how we should optimize our activity. Attribution tells us what about the user journey from the moment the advertisement appeared to where the user convertedTo help you enable attribution and to campaign more effectively, DV360 just rolled out new attribution modeling features, and attribution reporting options.  Below, I’m going to explain to you exactly how to use them.   

What is attribution modeling?

An attribution model is a rule or set of rules that help you determine how conversions are assigned to an interaction (impression or click) in the conversion path process.  For example, the Last Interaction Model assigns 100% credit to the last interaction that immediately precedes sales or conversions. In contrast, the First Interaction model gives 100% credit to the first interaction that initiated the conversion path. In DV360, the default Floodlight model attributes 100% of the conversion value to the user’s last click before buying or converting. If there was no click, the model assigns the value to the previous impression.  

How to use the Attribution Modeling Tool in DV360:

1st step: Create an advertiser attribution model for reporting and set the viewable impressions on the ‘Floodlight’ basic settings.

The process: 

Navigate to Advertiser > Floodlight Configuration > Attribution models or to Advertiser > Resources > Floodlight group > Basic details > Attribution > Attribution models (DV360), as seen below:

 Attribution Modeling Tool in DV360

You can choose the different attribution model as of the following options: (Last click, Last Interaction, First Interaction, Linear, Time Decay)  

2nd step: Adding the preferred attribution model to the LI settings

You can easily set up the LI’s attribution agenda and configuration so that the LI’s activity will use the associated attribution regarding the user journey and KPI’s. As seen below:  

attribution model

3rd step: Attribution reporting and performance analysis.

Use Path reports to gather insight about the path a given user took that led to a conversion. Full path reports can show the number of times a path occurred and the various events within the path. For example, let’s say that a unique user was exposed to the 1st funnel creative message and went to the landing page without leaving their personal information. When the user finally converts on the landing page, it could be after engaging with the brand 2-4 times with different messages and Call-to-Actions (C2A’s) before the actual conversion.  Thus, understanding their attribution path’s various events will enable you to determine the specific event that influenced the conversion. Afterwards, adding more funds to that path can help you generate a higher ROI and dramatically improve performance.  When counting conversions, path reports behave differently than other available offline reports. Path reports contain all attributed and unattributed conversions. All floodlight events are counted as conversions, even if they weren’t preceded by an impression or click.  How to set it up? Here is your answer.  

Attribution reporting

Best practices

Interpret the results and adjust your campaigns

When you’re evaluating your channels’ effectiveness, use attribution models to reflect your advertising goals and business models. Whichever models you use, consider testing your assumptions by experimenting.  Invest more or less in a given channel based on what the attribution models show, then recheck your results to see how it’s working. Suppose you’re using more than one attribution model. In that case, you can compare the number of conversions or the amount of revenue attributed to your channels according to the assumptions in each model.  Not sure how to execute Attribution Modelling into your activities? No problem, let’s schedule a quick call and discuss the issue.  


Gadi Elias

Programmatic Training & Strategy Expert at Total Media

Transcript – Flipping ON the Data Switch – Stories from Publishers’ Bedrooms – 10/29/20

Brian Blondy, November 3, 2020

Ben Erdos:   So, welcome everybody to our fifth virtual event. To introduce myself I’m Ben Erdos from Total Media. We’re a Google Certified Partner on both their publisher and advertising stack. And we help clients navigate and connect to digital and programmatic ecosystem. So, the aim of the event is to build a community of publishers and professionals interested in digital media, give them a place to come, hear interesting content and thoughts and to give them a forum for their questions. Today, as the title and the kind of invitation suggests, we’re going to be talking about data and the power of data.

We’re pleased to be joined by two guests who are involved in data in slightly different approaches, but they help connect their clients to the in the ecosystem to data. From a crystal perspective data has been fascinating is a fascinating topic. It’s one that’s kind of mired in a lot of complexity, and that complexity is only gotten more confusing as time has gone on and with privacy regulation, changes to cookies and people’s media habits. We’re going to come to focus a session on strategies that can help publishers get started with data or those publishers that are already involved in data, how to really improve on what they’re doing.

So, with that covered, I’m going to introduce our guests, we’ve got Chris Hogg, who is EMEA Managing Director at Lotame and we’ve got Tom Page, who’s the Business Director for UK publishers for the Audience Project.

So, the format will be we’ll go for one to one interview with each of our guests And then we’ll bring them all back. And we can have questions that you submit as we go along. And if we haven’t covered any of your questions by the end, please feel free to reach out to our team and we’ll cover them at the end. So, I’d like to bring up formally Chris, who’s representing Lotame at DMP. So, Chris is the managing director of EMEA for Lotame. So, welcome, Chris.

Christopher Hogg:   Hi, Ben, how you doing? Thanks for having us.

Ben Erdos:   Very well. And I see that you’re still you’ve got the nice background there. And you’re just off the back of a kind of a tour of your own events as well. So, thank you very much for taking the time in and joining us.

Christopher Hogg:   It’s great to be here.

Ben Erdos:   So, let’s jump in and start. Why do you see kind of capturing data as important for for publishers of all kind of all kind of scale today?

Christopher Hogg:   Yeah, I guess… And I think today, it’s all it’s been always been important. But, I think in in today, you need to fight harder for differentiation between your competitive sets. So, data is definitely one way you can do that is to really harness the audience that you have, whether that’s from trying to harness demographic data, or or drilling into your content vertical. If you’re a niche publisher, obviously, you know, that’s definitely something that should be a focus is how can you actually bring, bring that rich data to the forefront? If you’re a more general breaths or publisher covering multiple verticals, you know, it’s really about bringing that data and putting your, your audience front of mind.

Ben Erdos:   Now, that makes total sense, and what is a toolkit that you would suggest for small to midsize publishers that can can help them activate on that and achieve that?

Christopher Hogg:   Yeah, and we always look at data and identity as like a portfolio of tech, you know, so obviously, you know, a DMP is, is a great first first protocol to start managing your data. But, depending really on what the strategy is, and what you want to get out of your data, you know, if you’re looking to also build subscription based models, you’re gonna need some technology around that, maybe a CRM platform to, to work on an email, an email base. But, really, you know, you need something to harness your first party data, whether that’s data collected through your digital properties, you’re going to need a product to hance your data around email, email addresses, registration, and authentication. And that’s going to be an important piece moving forward. And then you’re also going to need, you know, technology or partnerships around how do you enrich those data sets? So, bring in a home or your first party data and then where do you look to actually get other datasets, whether that’s second or third party data, whether that’s from platforms or whether that’s from forging your own partnerships.

Ben Erdos:   That’s, that’s a great kind of stein, it leads me on to kind of that next space. So, obviously, you’re starting collecting data, and then it’s okay, you’ve got a start and you’ve got a foundation, how do you actually enrich on that and what is the best place for publishers to start enriching that data and how would they approach that in the best way?

Christopher Hogg:   Yeah, and I guess one one thing I didn’t didn’t speak a little bit about obviously you need content management platform in today’s ecosystem. So, I think really, once you you get the foundation, the first thing to concentrate on is your first party data, make sure you get that foundation layer, make sure you can glean everything you can from from your own audience data. Once you get that you start to kind of understand, okay, where could I strengthen those data sets? Is there certain market market verticals I’m looking to attract to advertise or sponsor my properties? What types of data do I need to fulfill that? Do I have that in my data sets? Do I need to add a layer of demographic data? You know, it might be very rich in content and context and, you know, can really drive into our readers’ interest, and you know, why they come into my properties. But, maybe there’s other data sets, you know, age, gender, there’s, you know, other social demographic data, maybe there’s B2B data, for instance, you might need to harness. So, it’s really about either going out and finding those partnerships or it’s bringing in organizations that have done a lot that hard work to either aggregate that by bringing second party or third party data to the table.

Ben Erdos:   And what… I mean, do you see anything that’s from the marketing side and from the advertiser’s side that is steering that or you would really recommend kind of having that conversations with, with the buyers and with those advertisers in terms of where to what data they’re looking for and with regards to your publishers’ properties, and and their specific audiences and users?

Christopher Hogg:   Yeah, and I guess it’s what’s really driving the use case for the data requirements. It could be your own internal marketing marketing needs, you know, publishers are today are their own brands. And you know, they have advertising requirements, they want to drive traffic to their to their properties, whether that’s through search, social or display. If it’s in terms of how to attract certain market verticals to to advertise with, with your properties with your advertising piece, then that’s definitely the the sales teams and you know, speaking to their agencies, and you know, taking briefs in and understanding why you’re winning certain briefs and why you’re not winning other briefs.

Ben Erdos:   That’s really interesting. I mean, we have a lot of publishers that are either deeply involved, or starting in terms of acquiring traffic for themselves. Do you see anybody that any publishers that are doing that kind of 360 view actually getting a brief from advertisers on an audience by actually going out and cherry picking those specific audiences and bringing it through for that advertiser itself?

Christopher Hogg:   Yeah, so what a lot of our clients do, obviously, we supply them with technology to manage their first party data collection, and, and identity, how they can actually stitch the ecosystem together. But, Likewise, we also make lots of different data sets available to them to enrich their first party. So, whether that’s the [inaudible 08:04] new data exchange, or whether that’s other branded data exchanges that we partner with, or whether that’s our more exclusive second party data marketplace that we enable customers to do one on one data trades between between their organizations.

Ben Erdos:   And in the data exchanges is there any sort of types of data that you think works particularly well for, for publishers?

Christopher Hogg:   Well, you know, the low hanging fruit is obviously adding a layer of demographic data over top of the, over the top of their [inaudible 08:36] data, but but it really depends on what vertical you know, we have a lot of B2B publishers working with us. And you know, obviously they’re, they will try and dig more into into the financial, the IT data sets, they’re actually the buyers, versus, you know, we have national and local newspapers that that will look for different verticals. And, you know, whether it’s automotive buyers, or travel intenders, etc.

Ben Erdos:   That really, really makes sense. And you touched kind of before about privacy and on all of those complex things. So, is there a what kind of things you do to allay concerns in terms of the longevity of stuff like data exchanges, and sharing those datas and how to kind of, obviously in smaller organizations where the understanding is probably a little bit less and they don’t necessarily have their own privacy teams and potentially legal counsels. How do you kind of make sense of that for publishers?

Christopher Hogg:   Yeah, well, privacy, privacy first needs to be at the heart of everyone’s data strategy today. And you know, it is a quite a complex landscape, not only the legislation to think about, there’s also today we’re moving into an era of who’s the gatekeepers of the of the internet and who controls privacy around browsers and you know, cookie deletion, and the blocking of certain types of technology and ideas. So, I think you know, identities are going to become very critical across the board. If you want to have a data play online, then there needs to be investment not only in the privacy side like, but also through, you know, an identity play. We believe in a portfolio effect. So, obviously, you need your tool, like content management platform, that’s number one, you need consent. Number two, you know, authentication, if you if you’ve got aspirations of building some kind of authenticator strategy on on your inventory, then that’s another area to look at. However, you know, I think it’s very unlikely that we can expect that the internet is going to be 100% logged in. And so to layer on top of that, you need some kind of technology that’s, that’s going to manage identity through signals. We launched our own product, actually, this week, off the back of our vents, we, we call it Panorama, the Panorama ID. But, you know that there are others on the market, but you know, I think we’re gonna become a vertical really split down the middle, you’re going to have the authenticated web, you’re going to have the unauthenticated web. A little bit today, you know, the walled gardens versus the open Internet. But, I think every sort of publisher and brand will find theirself in a similar situation. We have a percentage of our traffic authenticated, we have a percentage of our traffic that we don’t know about, that is going to be difficult to hold persistence, unless you bring in some kind of product that can that can manage identity through clustering on on the unauthenticated web.

Ben Erdos:   No, that makes sense. And congratulations on the launch of on the launch of Panorama. Hope it’s successful and goes well. Do you have any take in terms of other players that are doing in a similar space that may have their own sort of more media related kind of interests, like index exchange in the trade desk, doing their own kind of identity stuff?

Christopher Hogg:   Yeah, well, I would I think and not 100% on index. But, but I think obviously the Trade Desk announced that you know very much they’re looking at the authenticated identity. And there are players on on on there’s many players, obviously, on the authenticated side. And I think on the unauthenticated side, you know, I think from a global reach, you know, we’ve got a lot of markets covered. But, there are other players like ID5 is one that springs to mind that also plays on that side of the web. And I think what we’re looking to do is, you know, create a graph of graphs. So, you know, we’re open to work with every partner, whether that is a Trade Desk, or an ID5, or a [inaudible 12:56] you know off the back of our customers how can we help them actually stitch that portfolio together, and also add a layer of layer of identity ourself across there.

Ben Erdos:   Sure, we’ve got a couple of people that have just pinged in in terms of you able to just expand a little bit for people that don’t necessarily understand what you mean by an identity play, and also hear a bit more about how Panorama kind of fits into that.

Christopher Hogg:   Yeah, absolutely. So, the way that we look at it is, you know, is clustering IDs. So, whether that’s first party cookies today, obviously, there’s still there’s still a quite large amount of third party cookies still in the market, whether that’s mobile device IDs, Google or Android, whether that’s OTT IDs, connected TV IDs, and as I mentioned before, whether that’s other IDs, you know, other industry IDs, how can we help stitch that together, but with a layer of privacy built through that. An area that we’re very much focused on is, you know, if you look at GDPR, they put the the ownership of data and consent very much on the individual, a little bit of the browser’s are actually coming in between the consumer and the publisher. There’s a little bit breaking that, that that code, and it’s kind of taken away that consent a little bit from a user to say. Okay, I do want to actually get my data to this individual publisher, because you know, I want the benefits from that I want the content, I want the customized space. At the moment what a lot of people haven’t been looking at is actually with the deletion of cookies and the frequency that the browser’s are looking to do that. And some of them are today like Firefox and Safari. That also means you’re actually removing a lot of consent signals, if it’s an unauthenticated user, if they’re not logged in. So, you go one day and say, yes, I do give consent or I retract my consent, you come back 24 hours later, and lo and behold, you’re you have to be asked that question and again, and again and again and again. So, it’s a terrible, terrible user experience. So, holding persistency also by clustering IDs and holding their consent their consent choice, persistent across those IDs, obviously, if they say no, then no data is used for our products. If they, if they say yes, then obviously we hold that. But, if they say no, we also hold the they say no, and we take all of their devices out of out of their products. So, they don’t, we don’t have to ask them or our customers don’t have to ask them every 24 hours where they give consent. Plus, also, if they turn up on a different device, that it’s also stored that that users not give consent or that users give consent.

Ben Erdos:   That’s so so it is cross device, and from a user perspective, just because it kind of fascinates me, does is the user able to see heck out his own consent in terms of what platform what sites you may have given consent to and what cohorts he may be into or not yet?

Christopher Hogg:   Well, we as a business, obviously, as a business we have, we have tools for customers to come and see what membership they are, what information we hold about. And that’s one of the GDPR requirements, but also our individual customers, you know, that they build their own their own one on one area within our products. And they also have tools, you know, for for people to come and say, hey publisher A, hat do you know about me? Hey publisher B, what do you know about me within that within that close first party data environment as well.

Ben Erdos:    So so really, I mean, a lot of a lot of this has give the power of that to the publisher to build up their consent and build up their pool of users, they understand it and are able to then pass that through to the to the advertisers on the buyers side. But, a lot of the one of the challenges is often agencies and brands don’t necessarily trust publishers with first party data. Do you have any sort of thoughts in terms of how publishers can help build that trust?

Christopher Hogg:   Yeah, I’m not sure I’ve heard agencies say they don’t trust publishers. But, I guess it’s about transparency. It’s about walking, walking through your, your buyers, and your agencies and the brands, you know, your collection methodology, how you’re getting that data, what the properties are contributing to those data sets, know whether the data is declared or demonstrated whether it’s inferred, what bits of data are modeled, giving up model modeling sort of strategies as well. You know, there’s different ways to bring data and not all first party data is created equal, you know, not all data is created equal. So, it’s really digging in how you come to those, those those basically those answers.

Ben Erdos:   I think that’s also one of the advantages of working with a trusted DMP, like yourselves, or a company like the audit has trust in the ecosystem, you can leverage that trust in terms of the relationship with the advertisers.

Christopher Hogg:   Yeah, 100%. And, you know, one, one area that obviously we focus on is we’re known by the publishers, we have publisher clients, but we also have agency and marketer clients. So, there is a familiarity with our with our products and our technology, I guess, then it’s down to our customers to add that layer of uniqueness over the top of it and, you know, further drive into how have they created their data set, too, using these using these technologies and solutions.

Ben Erdos:   That makes sense. So, yeah, I think, in what do you see as the kind of the future obviously touched on cookies going away and that’s going to be a challenging probably transition period. But, where do you see it kind of going through that and beyond?

Christopher Hogg:   Yeah, I think every day we open the trade press there’s, there’s something new going on at the moment. So, I think it’s hard to predict too far into the future. And I guess the whole identity piece is relatively, relatively nascent, but but also, it’s organic, it’s growing. You know, we’ve been building our own identity products for about 18 months now. So, and we’re not finished, you know, there’s still more we want to do with our own products. And I think it’s going to be another interesting another interesting year as we go into as we go into the new year.

Ben Erdos:   No, I’m pretty sure it will be. Thanks, Chris, that was that was great. If you can stick around and join us for any questions at the end, that will be really good. Want to remind everybody that the session is going to be recorded, and we’ll upload the video to our YouTube channel. And we’ll send it out to the invitation list as well and we’re also live on Facebook if anybody needs to join there. So, I think Tom’s ready now and we’re looking forward to hear from Tom who’s the the works for the Audience Project as the Business Development Director for UK.

Tom Page:   Hi, there. How’s it going?

Ben Erdos:   Hey, Tom, how you doing?

Tom Page:   Good stuff. Yeah.

Ben Erdos:   And thank you very much for joining us tonight. I understand this is kind of your reprieve from two weeks of lockdown of isolation.

Tom Page:   Yeah, unfortunately, it’s not outside. So, it’s not quite the reprieve it could be. But, yeah, tomorrow, tomorrow’s the day.

Ben Erdos:   We have a nice plant in the background for you for some green.

Tom Page:   Yeah, that’s alright. Yeah, I’ll take that.

Ben Erdos:   Great stuff. Firstly, I mean, how do you feel the publishers are addressing or do you feel that publishers are addressing data correctly currently?

Tom Page:   I mean, you know, in some ways, it’s not for me to say, but it’s really up to every publisher kind of what they think is best for their business. I think what we can say is that most of our publishers fit into two camps, as it were, one and a kind of one stop shop for all audiences. An agency comes to them and they say, yep, we can build you that. No ways, we’ve got 180 different audiences to choose from, etc, etc. Or they’re there, they exist in maybe a vertical or a niche, and they specialize in a certain kind of audience. I don’t think either of those are correct, or incorrect as the case may be. But, it really depends on who your clients are or who your [inaudible 21:10] or what kind of contact you’ve got content, you’ve got to kind of decide which is the correct the correct strategy for you. I think, probably on the flip side, what I will say is that I, my personal view is that the the over reliance on third party audiences has gone on for too long. And that doesn’t mean I’m not just talking about the buy side here, I’m talking about, you know, publishers using them as well. I’ve got a history as a publisher, and we massively relied on third party audiences for all of our data execution. And that was three or four years ago. And it’s, it’s still the same a lot the publishers I run into. And I think the problem with third party audiences really is one that you know, first of all, it erodes margin. And then secondly, quite often, they don’t scale very well. But, most of all, you know, Audience Project is also an audience measurement company. So, we’ve got our kind of skin in the game here, but but it’s a total black box. None of those publishers know how those audiences were created, and what went into them and how old they are. And if you get clients asking that those difficult questions, it can be hard for publishers to answer.

Ben Erdos:   And you feel that, from your experience, both from the audience [inaudible 22:33] and previously, at Publishers, that advertisers query those query those audiences by deeply at the end when they start to consolidate their monthly campaigns?

Tom Page:   I would love to say all the time. Because because we would have 100% of the the sell side market, but no, there’s not… There’s that’s definitely getting better. And, you know, us being in market in the UK has massively changed that way. We work on the on the on the sell side with the likes of McDonald’s, GSK, Confused, to do audience measurement. But, there isn’t enough of a kind of audience and data inquisition from both the buy side and the sell side. It’s not just a publisher problem.

Ben Erdos:   No, that that makes sense. So, I mean, obviously, you’re working with publishers, and you go out and meet publishers that aren’t necessarily executing on data, or they may have an issue with the data that they’re executing on with their, with their bias. What do you find are the biggest misconceptions that publishers have with data?

Tom Page:   I think the biggest probably that, you know, first party data is is ludicrously either expensive or difficult to create. And that absolutely can be the case, but it doesn’t have to be the case. And obviously, I’m coming from an Audience Project perspective, and we’ve tried to make our product as affordable as possible. And also as simple as possible, because creating data can be difficult, you know, deploying tags, you know, making assumptions and putting people in certain target audiences. But, the way that we were set up is, is to basically make it so that, you know, your sales team with very little training or your ad ops team can be deploying and creating data segments, you know, in a very short amount of time. All our data collection is done through a survey. So, you just deploy a question on your survey, and then off the back of that you can create target audiences. And I also think that, you know, creating a data strategy in and creating a in terms of difficulty it’s actually quite a, you know, maybe I’m a bit of a geek for that and ad tech geek for saying this. But, but I think it’s quite a creative part of the job in a in an industry, or at least my part of the industry that doesn’t have a lot of creative aspects to it. I mean, I’ve spent most of my year knee deep in DPAs Thanks to GDPR. So, you know, helping publishers work on a data data strategy is a really is a really, you know, kind of it should be a fun part of the job and you can, once you’ve deployed it, you can see the kind of fruits, your labor and see what’s working, see what’s not. AB test this different stuff, see how your clients respond. It’s, it’s, it’s, it can be a real really interesting evolutionary process. And it’s part of the job that I really enjoy kind of working with my publisher clients on.

Ben Erdos:    So, that’s, that’s kind of good for the next question. So, obviously, you talked about the tech side of things and the investment doesn’t necessarily need to be huge financially, but what kind of steps and what kind of internal resources does a publisher need to be able to execute on a on a data strategy properly?

Tom Page:   Well, I’ll say, in terms of so I’ve been, I’ve been talking to publishers about data for over two years now. And, and I guess one thing that I’ve seen is that historically a lot of a lot of people bought into kind of DMPs, data management platforms, from the kind of from a kind of top brass level within a within a within a publisher group. And often that decision wasn’t really ratified with the people on the frontlines, or the sale, didn’t get the, you know, the programmatic was just given to a programmatic team, because they might know something about data. So, I think first of all, it’s all about getting buy in on, you know, what the strategy is, what you’re actually going to do with it. And the people that are actually going to make money out of this platform for you. So, your so get your sales teams involved, get your programmatic teams involved, you know, talk to people within your don’t just kind of C suite the entire process, and then hand it off at the at the end. Bring everyone from the bottom of the organization to the top of the organization in and, you know, talk to everyone and get everyone’s opinion on on the kind of, you know, what your what your what your strategy is going to be and how you’re going to make this kind of platform work with you, work for you. But, I think the three questions that we always get publishers to ask are really kind of what audiences am I going to build that actually help the clients reach the audiences that they want to reach? What audiences kind of, can I build that are going to bring in revenue from new clients? Because obviously, that’s a massive advantage, you know. And what other kind of overall potential costs? And I think, again, this goes back to my first point, not just financial, but also in time training, and what’s the potential ROI off the back of it? And, and, you know, I think, again, a lot of a lot of the time it historically, people haven’t given DMPS or haven’t spent haven’t they’ve spent the money on a DMP. But, they haven’t spent the money on training their staff or haven’t spent giving the staff the the time as it that they need to, to actually maintain and build audience segments.

Ben Erdos:   And obviously, I mean, a lot of what you meant, when you said, it makes sense in terms of bringing in the operations people and the salespeople and the media teams into those conversations from a pre sales perspective and a sign off perspective to make sure that everything goes go smoothly and is executed properly. Obviously, there’s a lot of resources and people involved in that. But, a lot of publishers don’t necessarily can’t necessarily afford dedicated data teams or data scientists to be able to manage those audiences and to build up those audiences and to really report on the value of [inaudible 28:40] audiences. How do you approach that in terms of helping those kind of publishers?

Tom Page:   Well, if you’re asking questions to turn this into a audience project sales pitch, then you’ve just got 10 out of 10 there. But no, I mean, I know, we the way like I said, the way the Audience Project is set up is that it’s designed not to kind of, you know, I mean, it really is as simple as asking a question within a survey, and then almost two or three clicks and you’ve got an audience. So, you don’t need to have a you know, a degree in computer background in computer programming and have worked at three DMPs, as long as you can ask questions that, that, that make sense to you to the people answering them and divide groups of people into you know, reds and the blues or football fans and rugby fans then you can build audiences, it doesn’t have to be difficult. And, but at the same time, you can you can get really stuck into the weeds of it and start combining audiences and looking at precision levels of audiences versus other audiences. So, really, definitely with our clients as well, you can make it as a… they, some of them have made it very, very complicated and very, very granular. And some of them have just put together some audiences that they know that their clients have been asking for, and they haven’t been able to deliver up until now.

Ben Erdos:   That makes sense. And do you have any advice on like smaller publishers, tiny publishers or niche publishers need to build up an audience strategy, or let’s say programmatic first or only programmatic publishers need to think about audience and then how do they go about it?

Tom Page:   Well, I think this is a really interesting question. And you can’t answer that question without kind of what’s looking at what’s happening in the wider industry about third party cookies. So, you know, when we a lot of what happens on the buy side, and the campaigns that are executed on the open market at the moment that the data layer there is being applied at kind of a DSP level, and they’re activating against socio demographic audiences. And in some ways, smaller publishers, and particularly niche publishers are going to be protected from any change in what happens with third party cookies because, you know, maybe people are buying on their platform, or their their inventory are buying because there’s a certain type of content that they want to be around. And they know that they can go to that, that that particular channel and get it. But, on the other side of the coin, publishers who might be smaller publishers who who might be more generalized than than maybe like a, for instance, or like a mountain biking site, maybe you’ve got like a small local news site. I think that you’re going to see some some quite significant changes on your in your open market programmatic. And, absolutely, it’s definitely going to be valuable to be able to activate either either niche or more generalized socio demographic audiences and take advantage of the fact that agencies can’t just jump on whatever DSP they they they prefer, and just add in a load of third party data, and the rest is history.

Ben Erdos:   And then it kind of brings on to the next point is like, do you see anybody currently executing really effectively and profitably with their first party data in in a programmatic way, whether that be preferred deals, or the open auction? Because that’s always where the complexity comes, where the buyers are used to and trained to buy on their own data.

Tom Page:   Yeah, so the open market first party data is something that’s, you know, I think it’s where we’re talking about the cutting edge of what’s possible here. And, you know, I think we can probably talk about what I guess the the kind of best example of this would be, what kind of ITV are doing with their, their buying tool that let’s you buy ITV inventory straight from ITV’s own DSP. And that’s a really good example of them still owning the first party data, but opening up to, to the kind of open market. But, I’m a really, really big fan of what Immediate Media have done over the last few years. They’ve, they’ve gone from being heavily reliant on third party audiences, to being first party exclusive. And we played a massive part in that. And we’ve worked with them really closely. And, and their revenue has absolutely gone through the roof. And they’ve, what they’ve done, I think, that makes them stand out to me is that they’ve done a really, really good job of training their salespeople in how to talk about data, and then deploying them to agencies and ensuring that the agencies understand how the data targeting works, how the data is being created, and exactly what they can and can’t do. And and I think that they that, you know, that that what they’ve done there with their sales team, and the education piece that they’ve done is really important. And I think a lot of publishers would would, would kind of benefit from that.

Ben Erdos:   So, really your recommendation is those publishers that are driving or that have direct sales to make sure that data is a part of every kind of RFP or kind of every answer to the brief and that kind of stuff to be just conversing with the agency sales teams and brand sales teams to really understand, okay, who are you looking to buy and how can our properties help you connect that?

Tom Page:   Yeah, I mean, that, you know, we’ve all I used to work at a publisher and we on every single RFP it’s like, oh, can I can I reach rugby players who have travelled to Venice in the last year? And they also I also want them to be ads ABC as well. Thanks very much. So so, being able to really educate your buyers on on okay, this is possible. This isn’t possible. And Immediate Media, the other thing they’ve done is a lot a lot around audience profiling. So, they’ve said an audience, so they’ve an agency might come to them and say I want to, I want to reach these traveling Venice loving rugby players, and they’ve been able to build, they’ve been able to profile and build in and talk to the agency and go, like, who are you actually trying to reach? Or who the who is the profile of the actual profile of the people you’re trying to reach? And that back and forth between publisher and agency well, that’s where you can get that kind of dialogue going. And everyone’s on the same page when it comes to like data creation and how you’re using data together, that’s when the kind of I feel like the magic happens.

Ben Erdos:   But I mean, obviously, that kind of puts it back into like, it’s it’s a process and to to have those conversations, and then it’s the question of how do you trickle that up and have those conversations at scale when you’re potentially talking about more faces buys in terms of the platform for platform exchanges or preferred deals and programmatic.

Tom Page:   Yeah, sorry? Well, I’m not sure what your actual question was there.

Ben Erdos:   I think it was more of a statement. But, yeah, exactly. So, the other thing that I would just say is kind of kind of wrap things up is where the looking forward where you see next year and throughout in terms of quick wins that you potentially could have for a date to player and also kind of long term…

Tom Page:   Yeah, I mean, you know, I think we’ve got to, we’re outside of kind of the big boys, we’re all kind of running around. It’s kind of a continuous game of cat and mouse between, you know, the kind of regulatory environment that we have to operate in and also, you know, the available technology. And I think at the moment, you know, there’s so much change with regards to privacy, which is something you talked to Chris a lot about earlier. What are the kind of ramifications? What’s going on in the wider industry? And like I say, I think, you know, the biggest opportunity over the next year for me, if you know, talk, if I had, if I had 100 publishers in front of me, I’d say, you know, without looking at your individual business, it’s this ability to continue to target socio demographic audiences, because that’s something that’s just going to be you know, if that if it happened tomorrow, it would be an absolute disaster for well, the buy side and the sell side, but just just about everyone and vendors, too, you know. But, there’s definitely going to be a lot of a lot of buy siders caught short with regards to getting their campaigns away. And, and you know, you can’t just turn around to someone you’ve been working with for the last 10 years and tell him to buy man 1634 and then go, Oh, yeah, by the way, we’re just going to buy everything on context now, because it’s just as good. And if it is just as good, then that last 10 years of advice might not seem so good all of a sudden. So, I think for me, the biggest opportunity that publishers got in the next year is to generate your own first party data, it’s not hard, you’ve got to remember those third party audiences are going to be going and make sure that you can have a conversation with your clients and your agencies and talk honestly about what you can and can’t do in the world of data. And then secondly, just ensure you’ve got you know, the basic socio demographic audiences available for activation. Because there’s going to be people that are going to be looking for new avenues to execute campaigns against.

Ben Erdos:   I think those are really good tips. And thank you very much. So, what we’ll do is we’ll bring Chris back up to answer any questions that we may have from the audience as well. And I’m sure you guys have questions for each other, I think. So do we have any any questions from the audience so far, Brian?

Brian:   Not at this moment.

Ben Erdos:   Okay, I think Tom, you mentioned you you had something you wanted to ask Chris.

Tom Page:   Oh, God, did I? What was it now?

Ben Erdos:   Putting you on the spot there, but…

Tom Page:   I actually can’t remember what the question was, if I’m honest. Actually, the one thing we’ve Chris and I have actually got a lot of, or a number of clients in common.

Christopher Hogg:   Yeah.

Tom Page:   But, I guess, you know, Audience Project is we specialize in, in audience measurement and audience precision. And how many conversations with your kind of clients do you have about, you know, audiences being accurate or not accurate or precision and things like that? I mean, does that does that… Is that even a question that comes up or not? Or am I just living in a kind of little bubble where audience measurement is really important and everyone else just is not?

Christopher Hogg:   No, it does, it does come up. And obviously, it also depends on what data sets we’re looking at, you know, us as an organization, we’ve done a lot around, you know, scoring, scoring data that we actually bring bring for our customers to purchase. So, we, you know, we, we have, we have a bit of a heritage in there. And we do speak to a lot of our customers around how can they do the same kind of verification across some of their own audience sets to be able to present to buyers in almost like accreditation, a, you know, don’t just trust us these these audiences are, what we what what we’re saying they are. And so we have a lot of though, those conversations, definitely definitely with our customers. And, you know, we work with publishers from all types of experience, you know, publishers that are new to DMP, publishers that that have had DMP for seven, eight years now. And I think, as a publisher goes through that, that kind of DMP life cycle, you know, publishers that have had a product for a lot longer, they’re they’re now not just sitting in front of the UI, and, you know, selecting pieces of data, whether it’s first second, or third party, you know, using an interface is there, they have data engineers and data scientists, and they’re in scoring data. They bring in panel based data in and so so I think it really depends on obviously, one the resource, but also where that where that publisher is on their journey.

Tom Page:   You mentioned as well, subscriptions, and I guess, like, you know, we are doing some stuff in this subscription kind of world, but we’re not, you know, specialist in, you know, subscriber growth or anything like that. There’s a number of companies that do specialize in that. And like, where do you where does kind of Lotame see themselves fitting in on this, this kind of, in this world where publishers are focusing on, you know, getting not just getting login, which is obviously an identity piece, but but also driving revenue that’s not just from advertising?

Christopher Hogg:   Yeah, that’s a great question. And, as you mentioned, early on, look back back in the day DMPs were brought on and put in the programmatic team, and it was all about the programmatic advertising and private marketplace. I would say today, you know, data management platforms, you know, are running across multiple strategies, multiple business units now. And subscription base is one of them. So, you know, there’s multiple areas that we we help our customers in it, one is putting the right message in front of the right customer to get them to subscribe. And, you know, that’s just old fashioned advertising with data. But also… Sorry.

Tom Page:   No, no, carry on.

Christopher Hogg:   I thought you was gonna say something.

Tom Page:   I was gonna say at the right time, cuz you forgot that. I was like, come on, you’ve got two thirds of the way there.

Christopher Hogg:   Dammit! And, and, and then, you know, for more advanced, what we’re now doing is, you know, what, what does a good subscriber, what does the perfect subscriber looks like? So, you know, it’s taking those data around the people that have subscribed and trying to model that out across the rest of their inventory to actually, you know, put the right messages again, you know, in front front of people that are going to be more receptive to subscription based models. And, and then I guess, lastly, you know, subscriptions now, it’s going to play a big part in identity and authentication. So, how do we help our customers plug that into their, into their identity graphs to actually further improve and improve their own identity algorithms that we’re running across their products?

Tom Page:   Yeah, that makes sense.

Ben Erdos:   Sounds good. I mean, for both of you, I guess a question from the audience is what do you see the mistakes that most people most publishers make when they’re working with a DMP in terms of their audiences?

Christopher Hogg:   I would say not resourcing it. Probably the big, you know, the biggest one, as Tom mentioned earlier, it needs it needs clever people. It needs people in front of in front of the data and you know, have a strategy.

Tom Page:   Yeah, exactly. I would exactly mirror that it’s, it’s always it’s honestly, the the amount of conversations I’ve had, where I’ve talked to a client and they’ve said yeah, we’re looking at you know, changing DMPs or we had a DMP, but we decided that actually, you know, we weren’t really making much money on it. And in 90% of the the, the the cases it was down to under resourcing that the company had invested a lot of money and you know, like buying a DMP. And then and then either giving it to someone who didn’t have time to run it or, or or not giving it to kind of anyone at all really. And it just kind of drifted around and then someone went, oh, what’s this X amount per month going out? Why are we Why are we spending that money on that? We’re not making any money out of it. So, absolutely, under resourcing is, is almost always the most common mistake when it comes to to data management.

Ben Erdos:   And then in terms of the scale of segments, do you see any kind of publishers making mistakes there in terms of making segments that are big enough or too small or too vague? You see anything around sort of the management of those kind of segments?

Christopher Hogg:   Yeah, I would say so. Look, a segment’s got to be big enough to make it interesting for an agency or brand to want to run [inaudible 45:54] against it. So, so that there is an element, you know, the, the the granular that you go, potentially, you know, it’s not gonna it’s not gonna have the impact for the advertiser. But, then perhaps, perhaps, you know, this is when other data sets come into play, like second and third. I guess one, one thing I would slightly disagree to what Tom mentioned earlier, I don’t think third party data is going to go away. I think it’s it’s a mistake to actually group third party cookies equally translates third party data, third party data is available across multiple sources and multiple IDs. So, I think, you know, it’s not going to be a switch overnight, when group Google kill third party cookies? Is there going to be maybe a tightening of that data? I think so. But, I think you know, that there’s still other data sets than first party data that can help you build scale and enrich the, the core offering.

Tom Page:   Well, I mean, one of the things that we did and and publishers have access to when, when they work with us is that when you build an audience, you always get a precision level for that audience. So, you know exactly what the scale is and then what the precision level for that scale is. And you can increase the precision level at the cost of scale. And you can decrease the precision level at the cost of, of, I suppose, if you decrease it, your scale obviously will go up. So, that’s, so we kind of put publishers in control of that, and make sure that, you know, they know what they’re doing there. And, and so, you know, no one’s if you’re, if you’re, and I think this really goes back to talking to an agency and having an open, honest dialogue about, like, what’s possible, and what’s not, instead of just, you know, answering an RFP and pretending you can do something. And, you know, we’ve all been in, we’ve all had RFPs that come over with ludicrous target audiences. And I think it’s better to go back and go, look, there’s only, you know, 21 [inaudible 48:00] in the country, and, and only six of them are online. And we’re running a football website. So, you know, you’ve got to be a be a bit, I think, I think the important thing here is that people are having an open dialogue about what what they can do and can’t do with data and precision levels, and an accuracy of all of the data has been activated.

Ben Erdos:   And you have a rule of thumb, I guess, for both of you and then an additional question for do you have a rule of thumb, in terms of what the minimum scale is of an audience to be really interesting? And then for Tom, what do you think the minimum accuracy is that you would recommend to publishers to toggle that down to?

Tom Page:   I’ll go first. And so yeah, I mean, realistically, it depends on the publisher, because for 1000 pounds, and you know, 10,000 impressions might be a big deal for one publisher. And it might be a not a big deal for another publisher, depending on that publisher’s scale. Before I talk about accuracy, it’s important to note that you know, what, everything we do is based on even a precision when it comes to data or an affinity. So, we’re not selling audiences that are 100% accurate. No one is, that’s the fact, right? But, maybe not everyone has cottoned on to that yet. And that’s why we’re in the audience measurement game, because it’s a big opportunity, right? So, all our audiences sold on an affinity and affinity is basically an index. So, you’re saying if your, if your affinity is 200, you’re saying, if you spend spam with me, and we run against this target audience, you’re going to hit twice as many people as you would without any targeting attached to it, okay? Makes complete sense. So, obviously, a minimum affinity that you that you should be targeting is more than 100 because otherwise there’s no point in using data targeting and you can price that you know, in a way that you know, makes sense. So, when you got the affinity scales, you should be pricing it higher and when you go down the affinity scales, you should be placing it.. You should be kind of pricing it lower.

Christopher Hogg:   Super interesting, you know, and it’s a conversation we have quite a lot this. And it sounds a bit baffling when you first mentioned it, an audience can be very accurate, but not but not perform. An audience can perform very well or not be very accurate. And it’s a strange concept. But, I think when when businesses really start to dig into, you know, and start to bring on data scientists and data engineers, and, you know, they’re looking at how audiences are benching and stuff against, against whether it’s industry benchmarks, etc, and campaign information it becomes a very different kind of lens on on data. So, yeah, 100% agree that accuracy and scale is it’s different to everyone. And you can’t really put a benchmark on it, because the circumstances of why you’re building a segment to, what you’re building segment, where you’re running the segment, who for is very different.

Tom Page:   Yeah, I’ve always wanted to make a segment of people that click and then profile them. And I bet my bottom dollar it would be either people over the age of 60, or people that use apps with big pop ups, or people with quite fat fingers. Yeah, exactly. Yeah, I reckon that that’d be the profile. One of those three profiles would be profiling 90% of the high performing clickers.

Ben Erdos:   Absolutely. I guess, do you see any sort of differences with the way that the different markets work in terms of let’s say, you just compared to UK, or EMEA in general? Do you see any sort of specific data trends that are different?

Tom Page:   Well, I’m very UK focus. So, I’ll be honest, I can’t really answer that question. Well, I could but it would be mostly a lie, so.

Ben Erdos:   Fair enough.

Christopher Hogg:   Do I see a difference? I’d like to say, I’d like to say I do. And I know every sort of… every country thinks, you know, the market is very unique to the market. I think the honest question, the honest answer to the question is, at some point most markets get to the same place, they’re just a different part time on the on the journey in terms of how adopted certain techniques are or how adopted certain platforms are. You know, I guess there’s always, you know, there’s always a local influence. But, you know, the, the advertising ecosystem, certainly around programmatic, you know, is very similar, wherever it is.

Ben Erdos:   No, that sounds good. And I think I’ve just opened it up to see if you guys have any sort of Final thoughts, or, or pearls of wisdom that you want to impart on to the, to the guests this evening.

Tom Page:   Really for me–oh carry on, Chris. Go on. Really for me I was just, I was just, I was just gonna say, you know, I think that as an industry, we will be better off, like I said earlier, talking a bit more about, you know, the accuracy of the realistic accuracy of data, and how we can use it effectively. And, you know, for the buy side can learn how to plan campaigns more effectively. And, and they would actually get what they asked for, instead of pretending that they got what they asked for. And these, the kind of sell side would have, you know, wouldn’t have those, you know, Friday afternoon conversation, where you’re scrambling around trying to match up, like weird data sets to make what the agency actually asked for?

Ben Erdos:   That makes sense. Chris, how about yourself?

Christopher Hogg:   Yeah, I would just say, around the whole cookie, and the browsers and stuff is, you know, my advice to publishers moving into the future is to, is to have a tool set at hand, not not to, not to put all eggs in one basket, and really speak to the demand side of the market to see what they’re they’re looking for. I think there’s some very good points, you know. Context alone, you know, brands are still going to want demographics and stuff and whether you’re working with the likes of the likes, the likes of Tom, you know, building those as first party data sets, or wherever you’re looking to get them, you know. I would have a tool set of stuff that you can turn on, you know, as an as and when you need to continue to do your business on it and interrupted by by cookie deletion.

Ben Erdos:   That’s great. Thank you very much, Chris. And thank you, Tom, for both joining us today. It’s been a great, great conversation. I think the publishers and everybody, guests listening have learned a lot. And thank you to the guests for joining and the team for having set it up. So, as I said, we’ll put a transcript and the recording on our on our blog and also on our YouTube channel. And if you’ve got any questions that we didn’t cover, please feel free feel free to reach out to the team. Any suggestions for speakers or topics. We’re happy to hear those,q too. Thanks very much and have a great weekend everybody.

Tom Page:   Cheers. Thank you. Thanks, guys.

Christopher Hogg:   Thanks a lot. Cheers.

Ben Erdos:   Bye, guys.

Introduction to DoubleClick Bid Manager (DBM)

Brian Blondy, October 13, 2020

If you’re a company or agency looking to expand and strengthen your digital marketing activities, DoubleClick Bid Manager (DBM), the world’s premier Demand Side Platform (DSP) available for marketers, is an excellent option to set your sights on.

DBM offers media buyers the view into the world’s premium inventory for programmatic media buying across all channels and formats.

In this post, we will be discussing DBM, each of its core benefits for marketers and how DBM simplifies programmatic ad buying and later, ad campaign evaluation.


What is DoubleClick Bid Manager?

DoubleClick Bid Manager (DBM) is Google’s demand side platform (DSP) that offers agencies, trading desks, and advertisers access to the world’s most exclusive collection of display, video, and mobile inventory available in real-time.

Often called the most premium solution in a marketers programmatic advertising portfolio, DBM ensures media buyers the best opportunity to reach the highest level of bidding, targeting and optimization available for launching programmatic ad campaigns.

Advertisers have the ability to organize and align all of their programmatic buying options within DBM,

What are DoubleClick Bid Manager’s Core Features for Marketers?


  • Integrated with inventory from more than 100 Ad Exchanges and approx..1 billion websites
  • Advertise across all screens (Desktop, Mobile, Tablet)
  • Elite Bidding Technology – manage multiple bidding strategies
  • Advanced Targeting capabilities – Locate and target your current and desired customers based on specific demographics, interests and their purchase intent by using Google’s data.
  • Ability to reach people on your existing remarketing list.


Buying Options

  • All-in-one Solution – Marketers can choose from a variety of options for buying programmatically including programmatic guaranteed, direct deals and open exchange.
  • DoubleClick Bid Manager’s interface allows marketers to plan, seek and purchase premium media within the platform interface.
  • Premium video inventory – Buy brand-safe video inventory for YouTube and TV programmatically through Google Partner Select, DBM’s premium video marketplace.
  • Simplified Buying Process – DoubleClick Bid Manager allows marketers to build, execute and measure campaigns across desktop, mobile and video all within DBM.

Reporting and Optimization

  • Full reporting of more than 35 dimensions and 50 metrics for viewing the essential metrics of a campaign.
  • Funnel Analytics Measurement – Deep dive into all of your real-time analytics data to investigate whether your campaigns are reaching the right audiences and converting into leads.
  • Precise Campaign Management – Develop and manage your campaigns using Google’s advanced algorithms to adjust and optimize your bids to reach your specific campaign goals.
  • DBM allows marketers to view the number of impression, ad clicks and specific website conversions that originated from the ad campaign

Unified Platform with DoubleClick

  • Use your cookies and floodlights to reach and monitor your target users in DoubleClick
  • Data created from DBM can be used and monitored throughout DoubleClick


  • Google’s DoubleClick Verification provides fraud protection for advertisers


Be a part of the world’s most premium solution for delivering your message. DBM will give you the best opportunity to reach the highest level of bidding, targeting and optimization available for your programmatic ad campaigns.

As an official DoubleClick Certified Marketing Partner (DCMP), Total Media has a rich history of working on DoubleClick platforms with different integration options. We have been an official value added partner of DoubleClick by Google since year 2009 and a partner of DoubleClick for 11 years, specializing in both buy side and sell side platforms.

If your company is searching for the leading programmatic opportunities, we would be happy to provide you with more information about how you can begin using DoubleClick Bid Manager.

What are RTB, Private and Programmatic Direct Marketplaces?

Brian Blondy, October 13, 2020


As the methods how buyers and sellers exchange programmatic inventory and campaign budgets continues to evolve and improve, it is vital to continue to stay up to date on the frequent changes currently taking place in the programmatic industry so your company can maximize its involvement and success. Today, we wanted to quickly run-down the most common methods in which advertisers are purchasing media programmatically and then we’ll zero in on a very dynamic method currently growing in importance for premium advertisers, Programmatic Direct.

What are RTB, Private and Programmatic Direct Marketplaces?

Real-time Bidding (RTB) – Buying ads through computer-run, real-time auctions.  The buyer/advertiser only knows the category, not the actual website, that the ads will appear on.

Private Marketplace (PMP) – An invitation only RTB auction where one publisher or a group of select publishers invite specific buyers to bid on inventory. The buyer/advertiser knows precisely which sites their advertisements will appear on.

Programmatic Direct – Method for advertisers to automate direct ad buys for set campaigns.  Programmatic direct incorporates both guaranteed and non-guaranteed contacts. Programmatic direct differs from real-time bidding in that it is a guaranteed-buy rather than an auction like RTB.  Publishers and advertisers are adopting programmatic direct because it allows for premium purchases to be conducted programmatically rather than through a direct ad buy.


Programmatic Direct Continues to Grow in Importance for Premium Advertisers

Programmatic direct allows for priority access to premium inventory for advertisers which previously has only been available through a direct relationship with the publisher.  Whereas this was once known as a method for unloading leftover remnant traffic, much has changed since that was true in 2015-2016.  Today, advertisers that were previously skeptical to begin using programmatic buying due to its lack of one-on-one relationship with the publisher, can now safely buy premium inventory in an automated manner.

Most commonly, the method in which a programmatic direct transaction takes place is when advertisers and publishers negiotiate deals beforehand with a fixed CPM and then the actual execution of the deal happens programmatically.

Google is bullishly predicting that in the near future, “The majority of advertisers and publishers will choose to conserve resources and streamline the sales process by conducting direct deals programmatically.”  Clearly, both advertisers and publishers stand to gain huge benefits from the programmatic direct relationship and .

Programmatic Direct’s Core Benefits


  • Early access to premium inventory
  • Ability to use data to target campaigns with precision
  • Real-time optimization with analytics
  • Ability to segment target audiences
  • Ensure brand-safety by targeting specific websites and apps


  • Create new partnership with advertisers for premium inventory
  • Brand safe advertisers to work with
  • New opportunities for selling premium ad units
  • Minimize unsold premium inventory and move more premium inventory more easily
  • Increase content exposure at the audience segment level Target premium audiences beyond the publisher site (audience extension)
  • Optimize content to grow high value audiences
  • Systematically sell paid subscriptions leveraging programmatic marketing
  • Demand maximum CPM rates for narrowly defined target audiences

At Total Media, we have an abundance of experience working with both premium advertisers and large publishers to maximize their results using programmatic direct.  If you would like to begin using programmatic direct on either the buy-side or the sell-side and are not sure how to begin, we can help! Contact us today!

You Should Be Interested Programmatic Direct Marketplaces

Brian Blondy, October 13, 2020


As the methods how buyers and sellers exchange programmatic inventory and campaign budgets continues to evolve and improve, it is vital to continue to stay up to date on the frequent changes currently taking place in the programmatic industry so your company can maximize its involvement and success.

Specifically, programmatic direct is a highly effective method for advertisers to automate their direct ad buys for set campaigns.

Programmatic direct incorporates both guaranteed and non-guaranteed contacts. Programmatic direct differs from real-time bidding in that it is a guaranteed buy rather than an auction like RTB.  Publishers and advertisers are adopting programmatic direct because it allows for premium purchases to be conducted programmatically rather than through a direct ad buy.

Programmatic Direct Continues to Advance in Importance

Programmatic direct allows for priority access to premium inventory for advertisers which previously has only been available through a direct relationship with the publisher.  Whereas Programmatic Direct was once known as a method for unloading leftover remnant traffic, much has changed since that was true in 2015.

Speaking about Programmatic Direct, Google bullishly is predicting that in the near future, “the majority of advertisers and publishers will choose to conserve resources and streamline the sales process by conducting direct deals programmatically.” https://www.doubleclickbygoogle.com/articles/the-state-of-programmatic-direct/

Clearly, the benefits for using Programmatic Direct are strong on both the buy-side and the sell-side.

Core Benefits for Advertisers

  • Early access to premium inventory
  • Ability to use data to target campaigns with precision
  • Real-time optimization with analytics
  • Ability to segment target audiences

Core Benefits for Publishers

  • Create new partnership with advertisers for premium inventory
  • Brand safe advertisers to work with
  • New opportunities for selling premium ad units
  • Minimize unsold premium inventory and move more premium inventory more easily
  • Increase content exposure at the audience segment level Target premium audiences beyond the publisher site (audience extension)
  • Optimize content to grow high value audiences
  • Systematically sell paid subscriptions leveraging programmatic marketing
  • Demand maximum CPM rates for narrowly defined target audiences


One of the most powerful effects of optimizing sales with premium programmatic (or programmatic direct) is the ability to grow the total amount of revenue a publisher can generate.

To optimize premium programmatic, ensure brand safety and avoid price erosion, publishers need to keep their antennas up for better solutions.

They need to provide more granular audience targeting on premium ad inventory. They need to work with trusted partners to increase the value of their data and user and ensure their inventory yields maximum ad revenue.

At Total Media we welcome the opportunity to explore strategies for growing publisher revenues. 

Google Blocked 1.7 Billion Ads in 2016

Brian Blondy, October 13, 2020

In 2016, Google aggressively policed its ad ecosystem, DoubleClick AdX, by identifying and blocking 1.7 billion ads that violated its advertiser policies.

Google has sought to clear any and all ads which demonstrated intent to deliberately deceive users, contained malware or redirected users to 3rd party app stores.  The blocking of nearly two billion ads effectively doubled the amount of flagged violations Google handed out compared in comparison to 2015.

Published in the self-published report outlining its push to purge non-compliant ads from AdX, Google publically disclosed that they have stopped 80 million deceptive ads, 112 million malware ads and 68 million ads for unapproved pharmaceuticals.  In addition, 7 million ads attempted to outsmart Google’s detection system and 23,000 mobile advertisements used redirects to a third-party app store.

Ben Erdos, VP Platforms & Services at Total Media, commented that bad creatives have far reaching effects throughout the internet beyond breaking Google’s rules for the ecosystem.

“Maladvertising is a threat to users because it erodes faith in the advertisement itself and it is a threat to the user’s technology, their identity, and their hardware. Specifically, it can download spamware, ransomware, and malware. Such occurrences create enormous risk throughout to the lowest scale to users, in addition to draining bandwidth, and data plans later on.”

In the fight to maintain a standard of ad quality, Google has had to adapt and constantly improve its ability to identify malicious advertising which often goes undetected by Google due to geo-targeting, dayparting and network targeting. 

As gatekeeper of its own buy-side and sell-side platforms, Google stands to benefit from aggressively pursuing non-compliant advertisements on the buy-side to maintain publisher confidence that the delivered ads are of the highest quality.

Yanir Yudovich, Director of Business Development and Programmatic at Total Media, commented that despite Google’s best efforts to combat bad advertisements, the industry operates in a tag based world and that any nefarious party can manipulate the AdX auditing systems and rotate in bad adverts within already approved adverts and manipulate the ad rotation.

“Ad fraud happens when Google’s automatic auditing process eventually approves acceptable advertisements for AdX and then an advertiser decides to add in new third-party tags on their own ad server into the already approved creatives.  As long as we live in a tag based world, I cannot see how this phenomenon will change,” said Yudovich.

Yudovich went on to say that as long as Google allows third party tags in their ecosystem, Google remains vulnerable to advertisements that do not fulfil their strict requirements.

“I don’t see this vulnerability changing unless Google will decide to run a stricter ad approval process over more time intervals (e.g., more per day) to discover recent changes to advertisers submission.  If this would happen, there is no doubt that the number of bad advertisements being stopped could be higher than 1.7B.”

Google’s interest to push advertisers to adhere to their policies within the AdX ecosystem provides publishers and advertisers a high level of certainty and trust that the ecosystem is solid and a safe environment for all.

Though the reality is that the chances of stopping more fraudulent advertisements would amount to an extraordinary amount of additional measures and resources throughout the auditing process for Google, whom are already doing an exceptional effort as compared to their industry counterparts.

Publishers need not worry if they see a bad advertisement published on their website. 

As a first step, a publisher can send an ad’s click-through URL to the AdChoices program in order to work with the website’s official Google contact to report and address the issue.  In our experience, once a bad advertisement is reported, Google will take swift action to take down the advertisement.

Additionally, a bad advertisement is most often flagged through an SSP rather than from publishers themselves reporting a malicious advertisement.  As per usual, AdX will stop the bad ad before it is published or is running for a significant amount of time.