18 Nov

4 Reasons Why Blockchain Could Be the Answer to Programmatic’s Problems

There is plenty of buzz in the programmatic industry today about integrating blockchain technology into the ecosystem.

Blockchain is most often explained as a continuously expanding list of records, or blocks, connected by encryption that is stored across a distributed matrix of computers globally.  Blockchain’s distribution across a grouping of computers links together a ledger of all of the transactions that occur within a particular blockchain.  The idea behind a chain of computers is to distribute information across many computers rather than on just one, to increase security and decrease the likeliness of a hack against one machine.

New entries into a blockchain are created by data miners who are incentivized to be the first to solve complex mathematical puzzles for writing new transactions into the blockchain.  The first to solve the puzzle receives a financial reward, commonly paid in BitCoin, as a reward for their effort.

The advantage of blockchain is that it is secure and its records cannot be altered without causing all of the previous records across all of the computers in the blockchain to be modified as well. The longer the blockchain, the more secure it becomes.  Therefore, the likeliness of the chain itself being modified at all decreases due to the strength of the blockchain’s global structure across many linked computers.

Growing interest of its applicability is due in large part to its proven ability and success in serving as the public transaction ledger for managing crypto-currencies like Bitcoin, as well as potentially providing its structure and versatility for non-crypto currency use cases such as for art auctions, banking transactions, and environmental issues.

Many believe that blockchain’s potential viability in supporting the programmatic industry is rooted in its value in addressing some of the most significant weaknesses in the programmatic industry today – ad fraud, lack of transparency and diminishing profits.

Here are four reasons why blockchain is considered a valid solution for making programmatic transactions more secure, profitable and transparent for both publishers and advertisers.

Improved Security in Transactions

Blockchain can prevent ad fraud by securing financial campaign transaction with the use of 256-bit encryption, ensuring that only the ad inventory that was sought to be purchased in the end is.

The programmatic industry needs a system of checks and balances to ensure that every company involved in the campaign transaction is aware of the actions of each actor involved.

When a programmatic transaction is made a message is passed to the network to approve or disapprove the legitimacy of the deal. Programmatic ad buyers are understandably interested blockchain technology because it will enable programmatic transactions to become more transparent, and increasingly more trustworthy, especially so when transactions are undertaken with third-parties who are not directly related to the core buyer and seller.

 

 

A blockchain provides all parties an open and decentralized ledger that all parties can verify at any time.  While it is possible for nefarious actors to write lies into a blockchain, no one is incentivized to do this due to a large amount of computing power needed to solve mathematical puzzles for validating and creating new records (ledgers) in the public blockchain.

 

Greater Confidence via Transparency

The emergence of blockchain in the programmatic industry has the possibility of improving the relationship between buyers and sellers in the programmatic supply chain, in addition to sharpening industry standards and increasing security.

Publishers and advertisers alike are currently frustrated with the lack of transparency that takes place behind the scenes of an ad buy. Ad fraud is rampant in the programmatic industry and is estimated to have cost publishers $1.27b annually, and conversely, a recent report by AdLedger titled, “Blockchain & Advertising Special Report,” says ad fraud is especially rampant for advertisers, costing $19b in 2018 alone on the buy-side.

Most ad fraud commonly comes from the following three scenarios:

  • Bots – Automated programs that produce false website impressions which as a result increases the real web traffic received and the ad revenue they earn.
  • Domain spoofing – Content owners mask the real identity of their website by claiming that they are a more popular domain. Domain spoofing causes advertisers to pay for impressions that never appear on premium websites.
  • Human fraud – Click farms employ people to click on advertisements, engage with websites and fill-out forms in order deceive advertisers that the ad engagement is happening when it is not.

 

In all three scenarios outlined above, it’s clear that advertisers appear to be the ones suffering most from ad fraud. According to a 2017 study by Fraudlogix, an ad fraud solutions specialist serving global DSPs and SSPs, an evaluation of 1.3 billion random ad impressions over 30 days found that 247 million of the monitored impressions, roughly 19 percent, were found to be either fake or bot-generated. 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 number which amounts to a total loss just short of 20% of the whole digital ad spend worldwide in 2017.

 

Increased Profit Margins

Blockchain’s value comes from bringing transparency to all parties within a public transaction. As a result of this transparency, both publishers and advertisers can reach more sound evaluations about their margins and determine which vendors are providing the highest financial value relative to their cost.

As of today, an ad buy passes through several sets of go-betweens (and sometimes more than several) before it reaches the publisher and consumer. When a publisher reviews their finances about their monetized impressions, it is quite common for a publisher to only yield 30% for the impression after all of the actors involved in the programmatic food chain have taken their share.

In order to address the consequences of ad fraud, both publishers and advertisers have begun using third-party verification services for verifying ad delivery. Agencies are pushing these fees onto publishers, who as a result raise CPMs to compensate for the increase in expenses.

Third-party verification fees vary in price depending on how many products an advertiser chooses wants to use. Commonly an advertiser will choose to use a combination of tracking, anti-fraud and viewability products, which can add up to nearly $2 per CPM. Not surprisingly these expenses are passed along to publishers, who as a result are seeing less profit due to the sunk cost of doing business in the programmatic industry. For further information about third-party verification fees, AdWeek recently published an excellent in-depth discussion about these so-called ad-tech taxes, see the article here.

Blockchain’s digital ledgers will reduce some of those inefficiencies by de-intermediating the market for advertisements, radically reducing ad spend waste by exposing unnecessary third-parties from being involved in the transaction.

 

 

 

Growing Appreciation and Adoption 

The emergence of blockchain in the industry has the possibility of improving the relationship between buyers and sellers in the programmatic supply chain, thereby sharpening industry standards, increasing security and reducing unnecessary third-parties from the transaction.

In July 2018, the IAB Technology Laboratory, a non-profit research and development consortium that produces and provides standards, software, and services to drive growth of an effective and sustainable global digital media ecosystem, announced details about its Blockchain Working Group pilot program to demonstrate the applicability and value of blockchain technology for programmatic advertising.  Partnered with leaders from across the supply chain, FusionSeven, Kochava Labs, Lucidity, and MetaX, the group is striving to test and evaluate the how Blockchain can address the primary pain points in programmatic “from data discrepancies to supply chain transparency.”

Additionally, the Adledger “Blockchain & Advertising Special Report,” found that a substantial majority of ad executives believe that the future of the programmatic advertising industry will eventually be linked and secured by blockchain technologies. The report surveyed 100 senior advertising executives about blockchain and its importance in the programmatic industry. When asked whether they believe that Blockchain is the future of programmatic advertising, more than 70% of the executives responded that they either “Agree” or “Strongly Agree” with the statement.

Blockchain’s central benefit is its ability to provide transparency and accuracy in its reporting, and there is a growing sentiment among advertisers that blockchain has the power to improve the industry. “ The AdLedger report found that 31.3% of marketers think blockchain can solve the industry’s problems, while 37.7% say maybe and 13.4% say no.

Optimism about blockchain is now evolving into actual use. Toyota and its ad agency Saatchi & Saatchi recently ran a trial with Lucidity to test whether a blockchain-based technology system would yield better programmatic ad campaign performance.

Not surprisingly the campaign resulted in a 21% better performance with blockchain than without by tracking and excluding suspect websites and bot fraud from the campaign.

Beachfront, a leading ad tech provider for video publishers, has also begun integrating cryptographic and blockchain based technologies into its ad platforms to enable better targeting for ad campaigns, in addition to offering post-campaign verification for video ads across all devices (desktop, mobile, connected TVs).

Beachfront’s cryptographic and blockchain technologies create a detailed and permanent record of each campaign which allows for publishers to provide evidence of ad delivery, which audiences received the impression, as well as enabling advertisers set-up more precise targeting and optimization for their campaigns.

Blockchain’s central benefit is its ability to provide transparency and accuracy in its data, and there is a growing sentiment among advertisers that blockchain has the power to improve the industry. According to the AdLedger report, 31.3% of marketers think blockchain can solve the industry’s problems, while 37.7% say maybe and 13.4% say no.

Just over 50% think blockchain will reduce the number of intermediaries in the supply chain, with 34.8% saying maybe. More than a third, or 39.4%, agree and 32.4% strongly agree that blockchain is the future of advertising.

 

Concluding Thoughts 

The emergence of blockchain in the programmatic industry offers a compelling case for improving the relationship between buyers and sellers in the programmatic supply chain. As a result, blockchain could effectively assist in improving industry standards, increasing security and reducing unnecessary third-parties from the transaction.

Proponents of the technology may very well be correct in believing that blockchain’s viability in supporting the programmatic industry would effectively address three of the most significant weaknesses in the programmatic industry today – ad fraud, lack of transparency and diminishing profits.

Though for blockchain to be considered a viable measurement and validation tool, it needs to be universally adopted by both sides of the programmatic ecosystem as a recognized standard. Perhaps a critical mass of adopters will emerge in 2019 and create a new status quo for how the industry self-regulates itself.

Where things stand today, it easy to see why blockchain is considered a valid solution for making programmatic transactions more secure, profitable and transparent for both publishers and advertisers.

There is plenty of buzz in the advertising industry about integrating blockchain technology into the ecosystem, and we are expecting the conversation about the technology to grow louder and the integration of the technology to begin to scale in 2019.

 

 

 

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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04 Sep

Meet with us at our DMEXCO exhibition booth – Hall 8, E32

Save time to meet with us at our DMEXCO exhibition booth (Hall 8, E32), Sept. 12-13, 2018

 

This year we are excited to be taking meetings about EBDA, the next great technology in the programmatic industry for publishers.  In addition, we will also be presenting our full spectrum of dynamic solutions (platform accessmediaservicesanalytics) for publishers and advertisers.  Scroll down for our DMEXCO overview so you know which meeting to book.

Whether you are looking to earn more revenue for your website or you want to reach new audiences with your digital campaigns, we are certified and trusted by Google for over fifteen years to provide you with the highest standard of technology, service and excellence. Let us know how we can assist you.

If you would like to set up a meeting for DMEXCO you can contact us here.

 

EBDA is now available for publishers in Google Ad Manager 360!

Exchange Bidding Dynamic Allocation (EBDA) is a dynamic revenue earning strategy in Google Ad Manager which enables exchanges and SSPs to bid on a publisher’s inventory within a unified auction.  EBDA is an excellent strategy for publishers to accelerate growth and increase monthly revenue.
  • Increased global competition and demand for your inventory.
  • Reduced load latency and complexity for partner tags.
  • Simplified and timely monthly payment for all revenue earned.
  • The next great technology in the programmatic industry for publishers.

Publisher Solutions We’re Presenting at DMEXCO

Google Ad Manager 360 (with EBDA)
The ultimate platform to manage your ad business and grow your revenue.

Total Media’s Video Platform
Advanced outstream video advertising solutions.

Monetization & Optimization 
Setup, optimization, and maintenance of your ad revenue.

Set-up a Meeting – Contact us here.

Advertiser Solutions We’re Presenting at DMEXCO

Display & Video 360 
End-to-end campaign management as a part of the Google Marketing Platform.

Video Marketplace

A curated pool of programmatic inventory sources for maximizing your campaigns.

Set-up a Meeting – Contact us here.

 

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22 Aug

The Power of Outstream – Mobile Interstitial

 

Mobile View

This format is a mobile format, in order to view properly please enter using your mobile phone. Alternatively you can use the developer toolbar in Chrome by pressing Ctrl + F12 and clicking on the mobile icon as per the below.


 

Outstream for Publishers

Unlike pre-roll, mid-roll, and post-roll formats, outstream is not dependent on existing video content. All types of publishers can increase monetization opportunities with video outstream because it allows publishers to enjoy revenue from video without having to face the complexities or demands of producing video content while at the same time ensuring an excellent user experience on the site.

Mobile Interstitial – Ideal for Smartphones

A top fixed slider is designed to open up when there is demand, in the top center area of the user’s screen, and remains anchored there when the user scrolls. The player will close when the ad completes. In addition, there is an option for the user to close the ad.

Total Media’s outstream tags are connected to buyers from hundreds of dynamic demand sources. Any publisher can use outstream within their content as a means of creating website monetization on desktop and mobile.

Implementation of outstream onto a webpage is simple- webmasters simply need to add a universal, simple tag which will take a small footprint onto the web page.

Click Here to View Our Outstream InRead Demo

 

 

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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28 Jun

The Power of Outstream – Mobile Top Fixed Sticky

 

Mobile View

This format is a mobile format, in order to view properly please enter using your mobile phone. Alternatively you can use the developer toolbar in Chrome by pressing Ctrl + F12 and clicking on the mobile icon as per the below.

 

Outstream for Publishers

Unlike pre-roll, mid-roll, and post-roll formats, outstream is not dependent on existing video content. All types of publishers can increase monetization opportunities with video outstream because it allows publishers to enjoy revenue from video without having to face the complexities or demands of producing video content while at the same time ensuring an excellent user experience on the site.

Top Fixed Sticky – Ideal for Mobile

A top fixed slider is designed to open up when there is demand, in the top center area of the user’s screen, and remains anchored there when the user scrolls. The player will close when the ad completes. In addition, there is an option for the user to close the ad.

Total Media’s outstream tags are connected to buyers from hundreds of dynamic demand sources. Any publisher can use outstream within their content as a means of creating website monetization on desktop and mobile.

Implementation of outstream onto a webpage is simple- webmasters simply need to add a universal, simple tag which will take a small footprint onto the web page.

Click Here to View Our Outstream InRead Demo

 

 

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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29 Apr

Programmatic Video, with a touch of history

 

An Overview

Once upon a time, programmatic video advertising was not an obvious choice for publishers wishing to monetize their inventory. The word programmatic, the use of software to purchase digital advertising, was met with blank stares and questionable motives. Thankfully, as the industry began to realize that manually negotiating, serving ads, banner tracking was too much for the ad networks to handle, it was essential to find an automatic solution.

To be fair, the digital marketing industry has historically been able to “keep up” with the complex and ever-growing web. It’s been a tango, to the say the least, with the first banner ad in 1994 on Hotwired creating the need for ad servers which in turn birthed the demand for ad networks. These ad networks were able to hold down the fort but the web kept growing and growing and eventually things got out of hand again – insert, Google. Thanks to AdWords and AdSense, the web could be trusted again.

Then, in 2007, Apple launched the iPhone and Google followed shortly with Android OS which completely changed the game. The web grew exponentially along with the audience. Manual ad serving was now out the question, for most publishers, as it was becoming increasingly difficult and, needless to say, unprofitable to pace the industry. Using computers and algorithms to make ad serving more efficient means that programmatic advertising is not just the future, it’s already the present.

 

Present Day

This brings us back to video ads served programmatically, an obvious choice now for publishers worldwide who wish to optimize yield. The reality is that serving ads programmatically enables data-rich, targetable, and scalable inventory trading.  Advertisers can buy across thousands of sites, focusing only on your target audience and are not limited to existing users only, but new ones as well. Programmatic advertising is CPM based, meaning that you for the actual impression, not per click on the website.

 

Publishers have a few options when it comes to programmatic video:

  • Creating their own unique video content and featuring it through their embedded player – this option allows publishers to offer this content to direct advertisers for premium prices as well as to programmatic buyers
  • Subscribing to an online video library and choosing content verticals which are most related to their content, or featuring YouTube type video content
  • Allowing 3rd parties to embed their own player and content to be featured on a site with their own monetization.

 

What automatic, data-enriched ad serving has proven quite certainly is that time is money, and publishers and advertisers are adopting programmatic ad serving at a rate that would make RTB run for the hills.

Total Media has a wide variety of video ad tools for our clients and we would love to share them with you. Click here for more information about our video platform for publishers, an all in one solution (player, marketplace, and dashboard) with multiple video formats to responsively show video advertisements on your website.

 

Talia Chudacoff is a Senior Account Manager at Total Media.  You can contact Talia by email at talia(at)mediatraderz(dot)com or on LinkedIn

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23 Apr

The Power of Outstream – Sticky

Outstream for Publishers

Unlike pre-roll, mid-roll, and post-roll formats, outstream is not dependent on existing video content. All types of publishers can increase monetization opportunities with video outstream because it allows publishers to enjoy revenue from video without having to face the complexities or demands of producing video content while at the same time ensuring an excellent user experience on the site.

Sticky Video Monetization – Ideal for Desktop

A sticky ad is designed to open up when there is demand, in the bottom right-hand side the screen, and is anchored there when the user scrolls. The player will close when the ad completes. In addition, there is an option for the user to close the ad.

Total Media’s outstream tags are connected to buyers from hundreds of dynamic demand sources. Any publisher can use outstream within their content as a means of creating website monetization on desktop and mobile.

Implementation of outstream onto a webpage is simple- webmasters simply need to add a universal, simple tag which will take a small footprint onto the web page.

Click Here to View Our Outstream InRead Demo

 

 

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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23 Apr

Inside of Outstream, Taking a Closer Look at InRead

Outstream for Publishers

Unlike pre-roll, mid-roll, and post-roll formats, outstream is not dependent on existing video content. All types of publishers can increase monetization opportunities with video outstream because it allows publishers to enjoy revenue from video without having to face the complexities or demands of producing video content while at the same time ensuring an excellent user experience on the site.

InRead Video Monetization

InRead is a type of outstream video format that is designed to open up when there is demand and expands to show between text. Publishers have the option to choose whether the player will pause if the player becomes less than 50% viewable or the player can continue in the bottom right-hand corner of the page in a minimized size.  In both cases, the video player will close upon the completion of the advertisement.

Total Media’s outstream tags are connected to buyers from hundreds of dynamic demand sources. Any publisher can use outstream within their content as a means of creating website monetization on desktop and mobile.

Implementation of outstream onto a webpage is simple – webmasters simply need to add a universal, simple tag which will take a small footprint onto the web page.

Click Here to View Our Outstream Sticky Demo

 

 

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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13 Feb

The Best SSP for Publishers

February is an excellent time to begin asking whether the SSPs connected to your ad units have the potential to earn you the maximum yield for every impression you serve. Collectively we can point to dozens of name brand SSPs that provide sufficient monetization and fill rates for publishers.

Our experience working with publishers worldwide tells us that Q4 traditionally features larger budgets and more activity in comparison to Q1, a  typically calmer quarter yielding less revenue and advertiser campaigns. Q2 is approaching and with it comes new monetization opportunities.

The use of the word working relates less to how much revenue you earned from your ad units in Q1 but instead serves as a means for evaluating the fill rates and eCPM performance of each of your ad units. This concept also relates to your critical evaluation of the quality of ads, response rates and service provided by the platform(s).

But let’s talk about what’s really important which SSP will perform the best for you and make you the most revenue for every impression! if your website has more than 5M monthly visitors and you’re not earning significant income, you should be ready to make the necessary changes

We have spent the past year researching the best programmatic supply source providers (SSPs), analyzing countless ads arriving from various sources, and interviewing our clients regarding their revenue performance.

One thing remained clear throughout: DoubleClick Ad Exchange (AdX) is the best SSP for achieving superior monetization results for your website in 2018.

AdX is the World’s Best SSP for Publishers in 2018

 

 

This year we made DoubleClick Ad Exchange (AdX) our top choice for SSP. Owned and operated by Google, AdX outperforms the competition by connecting publishers into the world’s largest exchange of global inventory.  AdX is Google’s exclusive programmatic platform featuring Real-Time Bidding (RTB) technology for premium websites to be paired with premium advertisers.

AdX pairs buyers and sellers across the industry and works with premium publishers and advertisers in the world’s largest real-time programmatic RTB bidding exchange. The AdX marketplace is connected to ad networks, agencies, and third-party demand-side platforms and powered by advertiser demand, conducted via live auction for the ad units.

If you have more than 5M visitors visiting your website per month, then you should strongly consider switching over to AdX. Publishers featuring ad units monetized by AdX expose themselves to the world’s most premium advertisers who are eager to spend significant advertising budgets on widely trafficked sites. Just this difference alone between membership in AdX equates to a substantial financial gain for the publisher who qualifies and begins using AdX.

AdX comes with AdWords buyers baked in which brings together the best of both of these worlds into one package. As a result, your website’s premium demand is amplified by the continued competitive presence of AdWords demand in the connected ad units.

Also, AdX reaches its full potential when it is enabled to compete with other networks via Google’s ad serving platform – DoubleClick for Publishers (DFP). By utilizing DFP (either Small Business or Premium), publishers can rotate between ad networks for their ad units, also, to directly selling ad space to advertisers, while always striving for 100% fill rates through the real-time competition since added competition for ad units drives the CPMs higher.

AdX vs. AdSense – Which one is right for you?

5 Ways to Boost Your Website Monetization

8 Ways to Avoid Termination of Your DoubleClick AdX Account

With a multitude of demand sources in competition for more of your website’s ad units, more bidders are involved for more ad units and the stridently pushing higher the price of the winning bids for your ad units. In the end, there’s no comparison; publishers make significantly more money by having AdX paired with DFP on their website.

Ultimately, if you’re a publisher who is aiming to maximize your advertising revenue and your website has over 5M visitors per month, then graduating to AdX should be your goal.

  • Sell your ad space to the highest-paying buyers in real-time
  • Increase revenues from premium and remnant inventory
  • Detailed reports on all of your inventory
  • Industry leading response times
  • Realize higher margins
  • Unmatched brand safety for publishers (and advertisers)

 

If you would like to join AdX and potentially make more money from your traffic, we can assist your website to maximize its potential with DoubleClick AdX.  Contact us today to get started!

 

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 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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