01 Dec

Google Ads or Display & Video 360 – Which is a Better Buying Platform for You?

Google Ads or Display & Video 360?

That is the question.

Google offers marketers two excellent platforms for buying programmatic inventory, Google Ads (via the Google Display Network) and Display & Video 360 (via the Google Marketing Platform).

Despite both having equally effective programmatic capabilities for marketers looking to buy digital advertising, the two platforms are entirely different from each other based on the available features and capabilities each uniquely offers digital marketers.

To bring clarity to the uniqueness of both platforms, we will be analyzing the precise differences between Google Ads and Display & Video 360 and then identifying which buying platform, or whether both used in parallel, would perhaps be the most correct strategy for your company’s current programmatic media buying activities and goals.

 

Introduction

Google Ads (Google AdWords)

Google’s most used advertising service for marketers for search & display ads on Google and its advertising network. The Google Ads program enables businesses to set a budget for advertising and only charges when users click (CPC model) the ads.

  • Google owns the world’s largest online display advertising network. (comScore).
  • Google display campaigns reach 80% of global internet users. (Google Benchmarks and Insights).
  • Consumers exposed to display ads are, on average, 155% more likely to search for brand-and segment-specific terms. (Specific Media).
  • Businesses make an average of $2 in revenue for every $1 they spend on AdWords. (Google Economic Impact Report)
  • 72% of AdWords marketers plan to increase their PPC budgets (Search Engine Watch).This is a strong indication that those businesses were generating positive ROI, because if they were not, then they wouldn’t increase their budgets.

 

Display & Video 360 (DoubleClick Bid Manager)

  • Google’s demand-side platform (DSP) that offers agencies, trading desks, and advertisers access to the world’s most exclusive collection of display, video, native and mobile inventory available in real-time.
  • Display & Video 360 is the evolution and consolidation of DoubleClick Bid Manager, Campaign Manager, Studio, and Audience Center. It offers a single tool for planning campaigns, designing and managing creatives, organizing and applying audience data, finding and buying inventory, and measuring and optimizing campaigns.
  • Display & Video 360 also offers keyword targeting similar to Google Ads but instead of targeting specific search keywords, Display & Video 360 is about contextual keywords.

 

Key Features Comparing Google Ads to Display & Video 360

Creative Options

Google Ads

  • Text, Image, HTML5 (only available for accounts with more than $1,000 total lifetime spend and requires sending an application to Google), Dynamic Creatives and Video Ads.
  • Build and manage creatives in “Ads & Extensions.”

 

Display & Video 360

  • Image, Rich Media (with Campaign Manager), HTML5, Native, Video Ads and Dynamic Creatives (only available with Campaign Manager and a Google Merchant Center account linked to a Google Ads account).
  • Display & Video 360 features a format gallery, an area offering descriptions about each format alongside with example ads for reference.
  • Build and manage creatives with Ad Canvas, Display & Video 360’s visual editor to build and edit creatives in real time.
  • Use data-driven creatives to personalize your creative’s look and feel for different customer segments: Panorama, Cue Cards, Blank Slate.

 

Third Party Data

Google Ads

Google Ads is limited to buying only on the Google Display Network (GDN).

  • Location and language targeting
  • Keyword targeting
  • Device targeting
  • Remarketing

 

Display & Video 360

  • The ability to find the users who could be the ones most interested in your solutions and most likely to convert or purchase.
  • Display & Video 360 provides marketers access to 35 third-party data providers*, which allows you to find users that are similar to your current website visitors, i.e., the types of people who are currently searching for the products/solutions that you offer, and specific demographics or affinity segments.
  • In addition to third-party providers, marketers will also benefit from third-party verification services, which is commonly called third-party data.

 

Feel free to sign up for Display & Video 360 below or contact us if you have any questions.

Device Targeting / Reach

Google Ads GDN

  • Google Ads is limited to buying only on the Google Display Network (GDN).
  • Location and language targeting.
  • Keyword targeting.
  • Device targeting.
  • Remarketing users who have previously visited your website. 

 

Display & Video 360

  • Integrated with 90 Ad Exchanges and includes approx. 1 billion websites. Advertise across all screens -Desktop, Smartphones, Tablets, Connected TVs (Tablet, Smart TV).
  • 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. Audience frequency caps for excluding users based on the number of impressions they have been served (across media, channels, and identity spaces).
  • Data Management Platforms (DMP) integration by combining first and third-party data to enable buyers to seek out audiences who have either visited or not visited your website.
  • Audience profile analysis which allows marketers to understand the composition of your selected audience (either first-party or combined audiences) based on its overlap with all other audiences in Display & Video 360 (e.g., Google data, first and third-party segments, combined audiences, and other data sets you have access to).
  • Use your cookies and pixels to reach and monitor your target users across the Google Marketing Platform (only with linked accounts with products in the Google Marketing Platform).
  • Campaign activity features the option to create an audience based on the number of clicks, conversions, and impressions (which are based on first-party remarketing lists or lead to conversions). Once established, you can target the new audience list in multiple line items, both current and future.

 

 

Private Marketplaces (PMPs) & Programmatic Guaranteed (PG)

 

Private Marketplaces (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 and ad placements their advertisements will appear on.

 

Programmatic Direct

Method for advertisers to automate direct ad buys for premium campaigns.

Programmatic direct incorporates both programmatic guaranteed deals and preferred non-guaranteed deals. 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 the traditional method of direct ad buys.

 

Google Ads

  • Limited to real-time bidding (RTB), buying ads through computer-run, real-time auctions.
  • Google Ads buyers do not have access to private auctions and direct buying opportunities.

 

Display & Video 360

  • Distinguishes itself from Google Ads by giving marketers the ability to target premium inventory available from high trafficked websites across the world via direct deals with publishers and PMPs and programmatic guaranteed buying opportunities.
  • Premium inventory is made available to every partner using Display & Video 360.
  • Buyers can also purchase a set amount of impressions to a particular website’s inventory through Display & Video 360.

 

Bidding Strategies

Google Ads

  • Automated Bidding based on marketing goals.
  • Manual Bidding for specific keywords & ad groups.
  • Bid Adjustments – Gives the user the ability to increase or decrease bids based on a set percentage.

 

Display & Video 360

Fixed Bid – Flat CPM, no automation used

  • How it Works: Use “Fixed Bidding” to have Bid Manager place the same bid on every impression inputted by the user, regardless of the impression value.

Minimize CPC/Minimize CPA – While spending budget in full, minimize action cost based on set goal

  • How it Works: Use “While spending full budget, Minimize CPC/Minimize CPA” to have Bid Manager automatically change your line item’s bid to get the best CPC or CPA performance possible, given the amount you have to spend to exhaust your budget

Meet or Beat a Goal of CPC/CPA –  Priorities Performance over Spend

  • How it Works: Use “Meet or beat goal of CPC/CPA” to have Bid Manager automatically change your line items bid to meet or beat a specific performance goal. If Bid Manager can’t both hit your performance goal and spend all of your line items budget, Bid Manager won’t spend all of your line items budget. If your line items goal is overly aggressive, your line item may not be able to spend its entire budget.

 

Display & Video 360

Viewability – Maximize the number of viewable impressions

  • How it Works: Use “Optimize for viewable CPM bid” to have Bid Manager automatically change your line item’s bid based on the probability that each available impression will be viewable.
  • For example, if you set a viewable CPM goal of $2 and an impression is 40% likely to be viewable based on Active View’s prediction model, Bid Manager’s automated bidding will bid $0.80 CPM (which is 40% of $2).

For mobile app install line item:

  • By default, it’s set to automated bidding to minimize cost per action (CPA). Because the action in this case is typically an app install, the default bid strategy is designed to minimize the cost per install (CPI).

Video Exchanges

Both Google Ads and Display & Video 360 allow marketers to purchase video ads on YouTube.

Specifically, the core difference between the two platforms is Google Ads is connected to the AdX exchange as well as any website serving video through the GDN whereas Display & Video 360’s power lies in its ability access to high-traffiked, premium websites from over 35 video exchanges.

Premium video inventory – Buy brand-safe video inventory for YouTube and TV programmatically through Google Partner Select, Display & Video 360’s premium video marketplace.

It is important to mention that Display & Video 360’s immense strength for video is a massive reason for adding Display & Video 360.  Since Google Ads is limited to the YouTube network and a smaller pool of websites offering video, Display & Video 360’s ability to offer 35 additional exchanges provides a considerable advantage for a marketer looking to launch video campaigns and would like to diversify and expand out the campaigns as far and wide as possible.

 

Feel free to sign up for Display & Video 360 below or contact us if you have any questions.

Reporting and Optimization

Both Google Ads and Display & Video 360 offer:

  • Instant Reporting – Allows you to see data immediately, instead of waiting for a report to run and then downloading the file for offline viewing. Instant Reporting is excellent for quick performance checks, ad-hoc reports, and routine analysis of standard dimensions and metrics. Instant reports can be single-use or saved for later, and also made into visualizations like bar and pie charts.
  • 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, budgets and optimization strategies to reach your specific campaign goals.
  • Display & Video 360 allows marketers to view the number of impressions, ad clicks and specific website conversions that originated from the ad campaign.

 

Google Ads

Google Ads offers marketers reports which highlight post-click performance and essential metrics about the users.

Google Ads Reports Cover: Acquisition-Behavior-Conversion (ABC) cycle:

  • User acquisition paths.
  • User behavior on site.
  • Conversion patterns.

Google Ads reports show essential metrics from both Google Ads (Clicks) and Google Analytics (Bounce Rate).

 

Display & Video 360

  • Display & Video 360’s reporting system helps you to analyze performance across Display & Video 360 and take action based on those results, including instant reporting that allows you to quickly access data within Display & Video 360 without waiting for reports to export.
  • Full reporting of more than 66 dimensions and 145 metrics for viewing the essential metrics of a campaign.
  • Manual adjustments – Going through the ads one by one and adjusting the bid.

 

Should you add DoubleClick Bid Manager?

Display & Video 360 will expand and benefit your current abilities to reach your intended audiences. You may be asking, “Why to switch things up when Google Ads is working well?”. We’re confident that if you’re asking this question, then your Google Ads campaigns are probably experiencing positive ROI at a low cost. We want to congratulate you, well done.

However, the central thesis of this eBook isn’t to try to persuade your company to ditch your Google Ads account in favor of a shiny, new Display & Video 360 account.

Instead, as a Google Certified Marketing Partner (GCMP), we would be remiss to ignore the massive benefits Google Ads yields and the success it is potentially already bringing to your company from running ads on the GDN.

We recommend that you should add Display & Video 360 and keep your Google Ads account.

The fact that you are opening a discussion about Display & Video 360 within your marketing plans, reflects the advanced nature of where your company’s digital marketing progress is in general. More specifically, if you’re looking to conquer the next digital frontier with your campaigns, Display & Video 360 is indeed the next building block after Google Ads for digital marketers aiming to take on online video advertising and higher budgets for display advertising on premium websites.

Google Ads is great for video campaigns for reaching audiences in YouTube. Though if you’re serious about running video ad campaigns, Google Display & Video 360 is immensely more suited for your goals since you can reach YouTube in addition to 96 ad exchanges which support video ad formats.

Our perspective is that advertisers should segment Display & Video 360 and Google Ads to each run specific campaigns in parallel to challenge each other and test each platform’s ability to achieve positive ROI. We believe that it is a positive approach to reach new audiences and earn better results. If your company is beginning to feel as though it needs to diversify itself into new exchanges, we can assist you in the decision to start using Display & Video 360 and combine it with Google Ads.

At Total Media, we have an abundance of experience working with premium advertisers seeking to maximize their ROI through Google Ads and Display & Video 360. If you would like to begin using Display & Video 360 and are not sure how to start or how to best use Display & Video 360, we can help you with everything along the way.

 

Feel free to sign up for Display & Video 360 below or contact us if you have any questions.

 

Brian Blondy is the Marketing Manager at Total Media.  You can contact Brian by email at brian@totalmediasolutions.com or on LinkedIn

 

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14 Aug

Advertisers Can Now Exclusively Buy from ads.txt Supported Websites

Google announced the introduction of inventory controls in its Google Marketing Platform, specifically within Display and Video 360 (formerly DoubleClick Bid Manager) allowing advertisers to selectively choose to buy from websites which exclusively support ads.txt authorized inventory and exclude themselves from buying inventory from sites not using the ads.txt file.

The recently released Display and Video 360 (formerly called DoubleClick Bid Manager), a part of the Google Marketing Platform, allows advertisers to execute ad campaigns end-to-end in one place, creating efficiency in how teams work and helping teams do more together.  For more on Display & Video 360, click here.

Ads.txt allows publishers place on their website server a .txt file which explicitly lists which companies they sell their inventory through.  The file lists partners by name, but also includes the publisher’s account ID.  This is the same ID buyers see in a bid request, which they can use as a key for campaign targeting.  Buyers use a web crawler to download all the ads.txt files and the information contained within on a regular basis and use it to target their campaigns.   This means buyers know that if they bid on request that comes from an authorized ID, it’s coming from a source the publisher trusts or has control over.

 

Photo credit: Google

 

Originally launched in Q4 2017, Ads.txt has proved to be highly adopted and successful.  According to a blog post written by Tobias Maurer, Google senior product manager, ads.txt is making a big impact on the industry.

Nearly 600,000 publishers have adopted ads.txt since October 2017, specifically, 430,000 domains have added ads.txt files to their website since February 2018.

“We’re proud to say that nearly 90 percent of our publisher partners have adopted ads.txt. What’s more, over 80 percent of the available inventory across exchanges accessed by Display & Video 360 is now authorized. Finally, as more websites continue to adopt the standard, we plan to make the ads.txt-only inventory control the default setting for Display & Video 360 by the end of 2018. said Maurer.”

 

For more information about Ads.txt:

What is Ads.txt and Why is it a Hot Topic Right Now? Read here.

A Conversation about Ads.txt with Mr. Sherzod Rizaev of MinuteMedia (Full) – Read here

Would you like to schedule a meeting to meet with us at DMEXCO?

sales@totalmediasolutions.com

 

Brian Blondy is the Marketing Manager at Total Media.  You can contact Brian by email at brian(at)totalmediasolutions.com or on LinkedIn

 

 

 

 

 

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24 Jan

A Conversation about Ads.txt with Mr. Sherzod Rizaev of MinuteMedia (Short)

A Conversation about Ads.txt with Sherzod Rizaev, Global Head of Commercial Operations at Minute Media

 

It brings us great pleasure to present a recent interview we conducted with Sherzod Rizaev, Global Head of Commerical Operations at Minute Media.  Total Media has worked as programmatic partners with Mr Rizaev and Minute Media since 2015.  Minute Media’s open platform delivers tech-driven content, advertising, and product experiences for global communities, publishers and brands. Its 5 international newsrooms and 4 video studios publish 1000 pieces of original content in 11 languages each day across its three brands (90min, 12UP and DBLTAP) as well to premium publishers and platform partners including Sports Illustrated, Univision, Oath, Time Inc, ProSieben, and EI.

We recently asked Mr Rizaev about his thoughts and experiences with Ads.txt and how Minute Media has adjusted and responded thus far to Ads.txt.

 

Why did you decide to add Ads.txt to your website?

We were convinced to add Ads.txt to our website for the following three reasons:

  • Following Google’s leadership of the initiative
  • Being able to discover who is monetising our inventory and control
  • Being able to define which other opportunities and partners are out there for us to approach directly

Have you experienced any issues implementing and setting-up Ads.txt? What has been the impact Ads.txt has had on your business thus far?

No, we have not experienced any issues with Ads.txt because we have an excellent development team that have prepared themselves and have covered the set-up and management of the Ads.txt file comprehensively.

 

Have you been approached by 3rd parties who have said that they have a previous relationship with your website yet you do not recognise who they are?

Every single day. Every day we receive a few emails from vendors that are saying, “here is our Ads.txt ID, please add it to your Ads.txt file, and you will generate $1M overnight.”  We see that particular vendors will send the same email to us every day until we either respond or make a decision about them.  In the meantime, we’re not doing anything with these emails.

 

Has the presence of Ads.txt changed your relationship with your approved partners?

One of the primary reasons we added Ads.txt was to figure out who we are working with, where is our inventory being exchanged and to identify the vendors that I recognise. Ads.txt allows me to work with my approved vendors directly, to work just with them, rather than these unknown 3rd party vendors who are reaching out to us every day.

For example let’s say that network “XYZ” has given us access to six different networks, each of their unique reseller IDs through the relationship. Now, I know that they are taking the impression and applying some tag or programmatic floor to monetise the inventory for us.  We’re already working with those partners and we have already seen the inventory on the exchanges.

Unless we have the open channels to generate revenue right now and we have agreed on the rates with them, and we have been working with them either on a pass by basis or a header or however we have previously worked with them, we won’t add them to our Ads.txt file.

 

What are your expectations/predictions for Ads.txt going forward?

It’s still yet to be seen, but I am optimistic about Ads.txt for 2018. Looking at the industry itself, the types of technologies that we want to employ, the likes of Ads.txt, and partners like Google, we believe that unique technologies that will benefit our website will arrive in the coming year.

My prediction is that Ads.txt is going to clear out the 3rd party sellers that have been gaming the system up until now. Ads.txt will force specific companies in the industry to go bust. The business sitting in the middle making money on the buying, selling and arbitrage, they will be the ones that will suffer. Though, it’s only a matter of time before third-parties find a way to trade again in different ways because the impressions are often sold many times over in exchanges.

 

Interview conducted by Brian Blondy, December 2017.

Brian Blondy is the Marketing Manager at Total Media.  You can contact Brian by email at brian@totalmediasolutions.com or on LinkedIn

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11 Jan

A Conversation about Ads.txt with Mr Sherzod Rizaev of MinuteMedia (Full)

A Conversation about Ads.txt with Sherzod Rizaev, Global Head of Commercial Operations at Minute Media

 

It brings us great pleasure to present a recent interview we conducted with Sherzod Rizaev, Global Head of Commerical Operations at Minute Media.  Total Media has worked as programmatic partners with Mr Rizaev and Minute Media since 2015.  Minute Media’s open platform delivers tech-driven content, advertising, and product experiences for global communities, publishers and brands. Its 5 international newsrooms and 4 video studios publish 1000 pieces of original content in 11 languages each day across its three brands (90min, 12UP and DBLTAP) as well to premium publishers and platform partners including Sports Illustrated, Univision, Oath, Time Inc, ProSieben, and EI.

We recently asked Mr Rizaev about his thoughts and experiences with Ads.txt and how Minute Media has adjusted and responded thus far to Ads.txt.

Why did you decide to add Ads.txt to your website?

First, the choice to add Ads.txt follows Google’s leadership and industry focus on the subject. In addition to working with Google, we also put our inventory on other multiple platforms which follow Google’s lead in the industry. Primarily, an initiative supported by Google or the IAB will always be strongly considered and most likely implemented by our team since Google is one of our website’s primary revenue generators.

Second, Ads.txt gives us a better idea of who is monetising our inventory and on which platforms. For example, if I’m working with a network and they are giving me six different network IDs files, I know for sure now how they are monetising my inventory. Through Ads.txt, I see how much unique demand these providers possess. Supporting the Ads.txt initiative is proving to be crucial for us for figuring out how our impressions are being mapped out onto the global exchanges.

Third, there are some players on our .txt file that I’ve never heard of, specifically some of the exchanges, especially on the video front. We see this as an opportunity to check all of our vendors and to leave no stone unturned at this stage since video is a primary revenue stream of ours.

These three reasons combined: Google’s leadership of the initiative, finding out who is monetising our inventory, and which other opportunities and partners are out there for us to approach directly, convinced us to implement Ads.txt onto our website.

 

Have you experienced any issues implementing and setting-up Ads.txt? What has been the impact Ads.txt has had on your business?

No, we have not experienced any issues with Ads.txt because we have an excellent development team that have prepared themselves and have covered the set-up and management of the Ads.txt file comprehensively.

Have you been approached by 3rd parties who have said that they have a previous relationship with your website yet you do not recognise who they are?

Every single day. Every day we receive a few emails from vendors that are saying, “here is our Ads.txt ID, please add it to your Ads.txt file, and you will generate $1M overnight.” We see that particular vendors will send the same email to us every day until we either respond or make a decision about them. In the meantime, we’re not doing anything with these emails.

As I said earlier, one of the primary reasons we added Ads.txt was to figure out who we are working with, where is our inventory being exchanged and to identify the vendors that I recognise. Ads.txt allows me to work with my approved vendors directly, to work just with them, rather than these unknown 3rd party vendors who are reaching out to us every day.

Unless we have the open channels to generate revenue right now and we have agreed on the rates with them, and we have been working with them either on a pass by basis or a header or however we have previously worked with them, we won’t add them to our Ads.txt file.

 

Has the presence of Ads.txt changed your relationship with your approved partners?

The presence of Ads.txt has helped us to clarify who we are working with. For example let’s say that network XYZ has given us access to six different networks, each of their unique reseller IDs through the relationship. Now, I know that they are taking the impression and applying some tag or programmatic floor to monetise the inventory for us. We’re already working with those partners, and we have already seen the inventory on the exchanges.

Now I ask myself, do I need network XYZ? Yes, I believe that we have more control to decide. But that feeling currently leads to the need to conclude whether we want to work with these guys or not because we have more information in which to judge them and their activities.

In a conversation that I recently had with the IAB, a particular question kept popping up in my mind, “How many vendors are too many?” Looking forward to January 1, we are already looking to clean out a lot of the happenings within our ecosystem within our control. We primarily want to analyse our system and find the ones that we wish to have our inventory monetised by.

We have taken the perspective as we are crafting our Ads.txt list to ask ourselves, how many local partners do we need? How many global partners do we need to serve 80-100M unique visitors?

We’re sure that we are going to need a lot of partners to serve our audiences. It might be that we should have partners that are strong in specific local markets versus our global partners that are strong in our top ten markets.

 

What are your expectations/predictions for Ads.txt going forward?

It’s still yet to be seen, but I am optimistic about Ads.txt for 2018. Looking at the industry itself, the types of technologies that we want to employ, the likes of Ads.txt, and partners like Google, we believe that unique technologies that will benefit our website will arrive in the coming year.

As of today, I believe that it is still early to accurately judge the impact Ads.txt has had on our business and revenue. Though we have seen an impact from our third-party publishers that have seen a dip in their income over the last month. For us, we were ready when Ads.txt launched, and we have been fortunate to have not seen a drop in our revenue. It remains to be seen whether this stabilisation of our revenue connects to whether Ads.txt is working or whether there is no connection at all.

My prediction is that Ads.txt is going to clear out the 3rd party sellers that have been gaming the system up until now. Ads.txt will force specific companies in the industry to go bust. The business sitting in the middle making money on the buying, selling and arbitrage, they will be the ones that will suffer. Though, it’s only a matter of time before third-parties find a way to trade again in different ways because the impressions are often sold many times over in exchanges.

I think it is a positive development that the system will be cleaned for the benefit of the publisher as well as the advertiser. If Ads.txt works in clearing out the system more efficiently, I believe that it is going to add quick ad returns since our approved vendors who buy from us are responding directly to us with their creatives. In addition to the absence of the arbitrage of our inventory, I believe that Ads.txt will continue to diminish the chances for us to being misrepresented to the advertiser. In the end, we will deliver much better results for advertisers.

 

Interview conducted by Brian Blondy, December 2017.

Brian Blondy is the Marketing Manager at Total Media.  You can contact Brian by email at brian@totalmediasolutions.com or on LinkedIn

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06 Dec

Ads.txt December ’17 Updates for Publishers

Ads.txt – December News Roundup:

Today’s post is an overview of interesting and useful content we have recently read about Ads.txt.  Being that Ads.txt is a relatively new development in the programmatic industry, we thought you would appreciate a curated roundup of relevant content about Ads.txt in order to get a good overview of what Ads.txt is and how both publishers and advertisers have been adjusting to it over the final months of 2017.  If you’re interested in additional Ads.txt content, you can read our November 2017 content roundup here.

At Total Media, we have already have an abundance of experience working with premium publishers seeking to maximize their ROI with Ads.txt.  If you would like assistance with Ads.txt, we can help you with everything along the way in addition to providing you with the finest consultation. If you would like assistance with Ads.txt you can reach us here or if you would like to join Total Media’s monetization program for premium publishers click here.

 

Ads.txt – AppNexus Launches an Ads.txt Validator

AppNexus, one of the world’s leading demand platforms, launched a tool designed to assist publishers to ensure that their Ads.txt file has been configured correctly.

On the page, users can either will enter their URL or domain or upload their Ads.txt file directly.

Once finished, the AppNexus Ads.txt validator will check for:

  • Data, comments and variable declaration line
  • A recognizable exchange URL
  • Valid relationship types
  • Valid variable names

The validator doesn’t check for:

  • Valid Publisher IDs – For AppNexus this should be a three or four digit number
  • Vadility of certificate authority IDs
  • Variable values

You can view the Ads.txt Validator here – http://adstxt.adnxs.com/

 

Google Reports Ad Revenue is Increasing for Publishers Using Ads.txt

With Ads.txt continuing to be adopted by the world’s largest publishers, Google bullishly expects that Ads.txt will boost revenue for publishers whom have added the file onto their websites.

First reported by The Wall Street Journal on November 30, Google revealed that the average price of ad space purchased via their ad-buying systems has increased throughout November, a change the company attributes to increased advertiser confidence of the inventory after widespread industry adoption of Ads.txt.  As of early December 2017, nearly 50% of the world’s top 2,000 websites have already added Ads.txt onto their websites.

Since Nov. 8, Google has been actively preventing advertisers from purchasing unauthorized ad impressions on its DSPs which have been identified by Ads.txt. As a result, Google believes that they have significantly reduced the amount of counterfeit inventory in its systems.  As more unauthorized inventory is cleaned from its systems and more publishers adopt Ads.txt, Google believes that advertisers should not only increase their confidence in the inventory, but also their budgets for their next ad campaigns.

“We would expect prices to increase once we started to cut out unauthorised inventory,” said Pooja Kapoor, Google’s Head of Global Strategy and Programmatic to The Wall Street Journal.

According to Google, more than 50% of ad space available for purchase through DoubleClick Bid Manager now comes from publishers using Ads.txt to prevent unauthorized selling of impressions. Powered by the ability to filter out unauthorized inventory, Google believes that increased industry confidence in its DSP makes the inventory more premium and inheritantly more valuable.

“Advertisers and agencies may need to pay a little bit more. But if they don’t vote with their dollars then unauthorized selling will continue,” Ms. Kapoor noted.

 

 

Brian Blondy is the Marketing Manager at Total Media.  You can contact Brian by email at brian@totalmediasolutions.com or on LinkedIn

 

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16 Oct

What is Ads.txt and Why is it a Hot Topic Right Now?

Intro to Ads.txt

Developed through the IAB Tech Lab project, ads.txt (Authorized Digital Sellers), is a tool created for publishers to allow for a public declaration of the companies approved to sell their digital inventory.

The IAB states on their website that the purpose of the tool is to “increase transparency in the programmatic advertising ecosystem.” Ads.txt aims to give publishers control over the end-to-end distribution of their inventory. The tool strives to eliminate counterfeit inventory (display, video and mobile ad units) from being sold across the ecosystem.

As more and more publishers adopt the Ads.txt tool, interested buyers will be in a position to evaluate requests being sent to their buying platform from websites, which in turn aims to raise confidence that the inventory they are seeking to purchase is 100% authentic and non-fraudulent.

At Total Media, we have already have an abundance of experience working with premium publishers seeking to maximize their ROI with Ads.txt.  If you would like assistance with Ads.txt, we can help you with everything along the way in addition to providing you with the finest premium monetization available for publishers.

Click here to register for Total Media’s Ads.txt safe monetization program for premium publishers.

 

How Does Ads.txt Work?

According to a recent article published by Ad Ops Insider, the process in which Ads.txt increases transparency and brand safety works like this:

Publishers put a file on their server that says exactly which companies they sell their inventory through.  The file lists partners by name, but also includes the publisher’s account ID.  This is the same ID buyers see in a bid request, which they can use as a key for campaign targeting.

Buyers use a web crawler to download all the ads.txt files and the information contained within on a regular basis and use it to target their campaigns.   This means buyers know that if they bid on request that comes from an authorized ID, it’s coming from a source the publisher trusts or has control over.  

 

Why is Ads.txt Important?

The emergence of Ads.txt marks a milestone in the industry and provides empowerment to publishers to take back control of who represents their inventory and brand.

 

Who is Using Ads.txt

According to the recent article published Ad Ops Insider, adoption of Ads.txt by publishers is growing quickly in 2017.

Through a self-created web crawler in Python, Kneen was able to deduce from a pool of 1,930 domains from the top 10,000 websites ranked on Alexa that approx. 13% of these publishers ranked in the top 10,000 websites listed on Alexa globally are publishing a Ads.txt file, including ESPN.com, WashingtonPost.com and CNN.com.

Kneen breaks down the types of publishers that are publishing files and their most common partners (Google is tops, unsurprisingly), and makes recommendations for how to improve on the Ads.txt concept.

 

Why You Should Know About Ads.Txt

The fight against fraud in the ecosystem appears be heating up as publisher adoption of the tool is increasing. Though only time will time how the ecosystem will look once both the Sell and Buy side integrate it into their products and processes.

Potential interim pitfalls include:

  • Drop in revenues for Publishers
  • Reduced reach for Advertisers

 

Other Useful Links:   

Where Can I Find Out More? https://iabtechlab.com/ads-txt/

How to Add to Your Website https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pMPC3XK2LO0

IAB Explanation: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qW3AYYO9yYc

Ads.txt Overview by AdOps Insider – http://www.adopsinsider.com/ad-exchanges/ads-txt-adoption/

 

Brian Blondy is the Marketing Manager at Total Media.  You can contact Brian by email at brian@totalmediasolutions.com or on LinkedIn

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24 Aug

What You Need to Know About Remarketing

Photo credit – Justin Brooke

What is Remarketing?

Remarketing is a type of digital advertising which allows marketers to present an advertisement to web users whom have previously engaged with either the desktop or mobile version of their website.  Remarketing is a tactic that is useful for keeping individuals in your business’ “loyalty loop” or for reaching new customers who are further along in the sales funnel. As a tactic, remarketing is generally used for “direct response” campaigns, where your goal is to bring visitors to your website to convert or to continue to stay engaged with your brand.

The basic idea behind remarketing is to reach out to users who already know your brand or products and, for that reason, potentially have much higher chances of converting on your website. Remarketing is all about targeting the user over several, specific occasions, thereby personalizing the messaging more and more over the interactions in order to encourage the user to move along the conversion funnel to complete the conversion.

Here’s how remarketing usually works:

  1. Someone visits your website
  2. The remarketing code you have installed on your website places a “cookie” in that person’s browser
  3. You show ads to that person as they browse other websites and social media platforms aiming to motivate them to complete a form, purchase or another visit

How Can I Begin Remarketing My Website Visitors?  

Remarketing works by placing cookies on your website visitors machine (desktop, mobile, tablet) when they meet your criteria. Their cookie ID is added to your remarketing list. You can have multiple lists with a range of different criteria. For example, you may wish to target visitors that viewed a particular page or section on your website but didn’t make a purchase or complete and registration form.  There are a number of advertising controls available to use, including the period of time that a cookie ID stays on your remarketing list and impression caps on how many ads per day are shown to an unique user.

In order to conduct a remarketing campaign, a website owner/marketer is required to build a list of users/visitors who have previously visited their website.  This user list is constructed by inserting a remarketing pixel across all of the pages of a website (or just specific ones of your choosing) in order to identify the visitors that can be targeted at a later opportunity.

Technically, this remarketing pixel is a small, invisible piece of code ( 1×1 pixel image) that allows your marketing team to keep track of how many users have visited your website or have seen your advertisement. With each user that visits your webpage or sees your advertisement, each is given your cookie and is subsequently added to the remarketing list.

The pixels allow you to begin to achieve an understanding of your customer’s actions on your website. Empowered with this information, you now have the option to run a simple new set of ads promoting a new/different products or create a remarketing funnel for people who have visited specific pages on your website and retarget them with ads.

Core Benefits of Remarketing:

  • Present a range of calls-to-action messages which are aimed to motivate a return visit to your website (flash sales, discounts, added benefits)
  • Act as a reminder to purchase an item they previously showed interest in
  • Serve as a call-to-action to return to complete a transaction for goods or services
  • Offer potentially interested users with a relevant and appealing offer
  • Reach customers who have already demonstrated interest in your business a reminder about the goods/services you offer
  • Create customized advertisements about your website/business
  • Create dynamic pricing strategies based on behavior
  • Achieve better ROI by converting more paying customers or registered users through better engagement
  • Fulfill more of your digital marketing goals

How to Implement Pixels

The easiest way for marketers to begin using pixels is to begin using Google Tag Manager (GTM).  In case you are unaware, GTM is a tag creation platform which allows to create and launch pixels in addition to the ability to track many different metrics across Google Analytics and Google AdWords.

Once your website has been configured to pass information to the pixel, these pixels can be fired in numerous ways, but most commonly they are triggered by passing through shopping cart sales transactions and website visits.  All of the aforementioned actions can be tracked in order to gain a wider scope of the sales funnel and to reach users that have taken a specific action on the website.

If you are interested in learning how to use Google Tag Manager (GTM) to implement a pixel, click here – https://visual-meta.com/tech-corner/switching-to-google-tag-manager-to-handle-marketing-pixels.html

All pixels can be used for counting visits to a website and adding browsers to remarketing lists. However, pixels can also be used for passing custom variables that you can use to build custom audiences.

 

How Custom Variables Work

Custom variables are key-values that can be used to track virtually any type of data that you collect about your users, such as ticket purchases for particular genres of movies, geos of shipped purchases, or the gender of the user. For example, you create a pixel to count the number of users who arrive at a thank you page after they register with your website.

As part of the registration process, your users enter information about themselves, such as what state they live in, whether they are male or female, and whether they would like to receive promotional emails with special offers. By sending this information to the Floodlight tag (DoubleClick pixels) as the values for a set of custom variables, you enable reporting on each of these variables.

With custom variables, you can define additional segments to apply to targeting specific visitors with particular characteristics. Segmentation enables us to understand who are our customers and how different groups of people behave on the website; this information is extremely valuable in order to provide a richer and more relevant experience to customers.

Additionally, you can use custom variables to build custom audiences. This can be useful for planning, remarketing, and reporting based on various segments of larger audiences.

By using DoubleClick custom variables, you can create reporting data that is tailored to your unique business needs, helping you to understand your conversions in greater detail.  To use custom variables, your website must be technically capable of passing information into a Floodlight tag (DoubleClick pixels) dynamically.

You can include custom variables in any of your pixels. İn DoubleClick You can create up to 100 custom variables per pixel. You can also add friendly names to make these key-values easier to understand in reports.

There are lots of creative ways that you can use custom variables:

  • Location: Pass the area code, the shipping or billing postal code, the region, etc.
  • Travel and vacation: Pass the number of nights booked for hotels, participation in a rewards program, route or fare details for travel, etc.
  • Products: Pass the SKU, product name, sales tax amount, shipping amount, etc.

 

Conclusion

Remarketing is an incredibly effective method for engaging visitors of your website. The ability to retarget website users whom have showed intent to purchase items, interest to convert on your landing pages or simply represent the right demographics or metrics for a potential long-term visitor to your site, is a highly powerful tool in a marketer’s arsenal to motivate a return visit.  Never before has it been so easy to use remarketing for branding and sales purposes.

If you have any questions about remarketing or would like to discuss how we can assist you and your company to begin using remarketing within your digital advertising activities, please feel free to contact us and we would be more than happy to assist you in meeting your digital goals.

 

Brian Blondy is the Marketing Manager at Total Media.  You can contact Brian by email at brian@totalmediasolutions.com or on LinkedIn

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05 Jul

DoubleClick Bid Manager 101

Introduction

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.  As we will discuss below, 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?

Targeting

  • 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

 

Verification

  • Google’s DoubleClick Verification provides fraud protection for advertisers

 

 

Conclusion

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.

 

 

Brian Blondy is the Marketing Manager at Total Media.  You can contact Brian by email at brian(at)totalmediasolutions(dot)com or on LinkedIn

 

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12 Jun

New Study Shows Vast Majority of Ad Fraud Caused by Small Percentage of Publishers

According to an early 2017 study conducted by Fraudlogix, an ad fraud solutions specialist catering to global DSPs and SSPs, an evaluation of 1.3 billion random ad impressions during a 30 day period uncovered that 247 million of the monitored impressions, roughly 19 percent, were found to be either fake or bot generated. 

Fraudlogix’ global analysis study focused on the activity of 59,000 publishers over a 30 day evaluation in April 2017.

In particular, 514 publishers (0.9%) were found to be responsible for more than 50% of all of the fraudulent activities documented during the study.

Fortunately for advertisers, the fake impressions were discovered not to be spread across the internet, but rather, clustered within a small group of publishers whom are uniquely accountable for the majority of fraudulent activity currently monitored in the study.

Going further, roughly 2,000 publishers (3.0%) of the same pool were generating more than two-thirds (68%) of all of the ad fraud found. 

Fraudlogix found that the publishers whom were participating in ad fraud were buying bot-generated traffic in order to generate falsified impressions for advertisers.

Fraudlogix still believes that the ad industry as a whole is honest and is providing clean ad traffic.

Despite the optimism, figures released in March 2017 point to ad fraud costing advertisers $16.4 billion in wasted ad spend globally during the current calendar year, a figure which amounts to a total loss just short of 20% of the total digital ad spend worldwide in 2017.  

Lesson of the day is to be careful what you buy!

 

Total Media Offers Consulting for Advertisers

As an advertiser you need to maximize your return on investment across all media channels. That’s where Total Media comes in: We harness multiple technologies, skills and languages, with over a decade of advertising technology experience to deliver optimal results for our customers. Our expertise in programmatic technologies and platforms will maximize your advertising campaigns.

Total Media prides itself on enabling organizations to take their business to the next level with meaningful marketing that aligns customer’s advertising strategy and their content with measurable, reliable and results-driven marketing.

We have an abundance of experience working with both premium advertisers and publishers with highly-trafficked websites seeking to maximize their ROI through 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 you along the way. Feel free to contact us here for further consultation.

 

 

Brian Blondy is the Marketing Manager at Total Media.  You can contact Brian by email at brian(at)totalmediasolutions(dot)com or on LinkedIn

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10 Dec

What You Need to Know About Preferred Deals and Private Auctions

The programmatic industry has fundamentally changed the way publishers and advertisers interact with each other and how they buy and sell premium media online. In the not-so-distant past, publishers and advertisers used to communicate directly and negotiated placements and CPM for premium ad placements amongst themselves.

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