4 Takeaways from Programmatic I/O NYC 2019

On October 15 and 16 we attended Programmatic I/O in New York and, as usual, it did not disappoint. Filled with informative sessions and amazing insight from industry leaders, we got a lot of valuable information to takeaway. We also had a lot of fun in the StackAdapt Lounge, meeting with peers and having great conversations about the industry, trends and of course, StackAdapt! I wanted to share my major takeaways from Programmatic I/O New York.

1. CTV will play a huge role in the upcoming election

We sat in on a session led by one of our supply partners, Telaria, which opened a lot of conversation around connected TV (CTV) and political advertising. With the 2020 US election fast approaching, CTV is a must to include in your campaign planning. Millennials and Gen Z’s (aka GenZennials) make up 52 Million voters (that’s 20% of the voting population!). This means you need to reach this key demographic where they spend time—and 93% of them are consuming content through connected TV (most of which are cord-nevers and cord-cutters so linear TV is not going to fly). With CTV you’re able to combine the trust of TV, with the targeting of digital. Being able to reach this target demographic, through a channel they use and trust is going to be a game-changer for your political campaign success. 

2. The relationship between programmatic creative and media is of the utmost importance

We got a lot of great takeaways from the session led by Prohaska Consulting around best practices for programmatic creative. There is a big disconnect between media and creative, which comes as a result of a lack of media execution knowledge. To best use your creatives in your campaigns, you need to know what audience segments you are targeting. This means you need to have data management in the back of your mind when you are building your ads. And to ensure the most success for your programmatic campaigns, your team needs to understand what capabilities your demand-side platform has. Creative and media work best together when you recognize the personalization options available before you launch. Having a deep understanding of the segmentation your DSP offers, and the ways in which your creative can be personalized to achieve the most success are both equally critical to success. And as always, you should always root your creative direction from any learnings from past campaigns.

3. Contextual targeting is the next big thing

Contextual targeting isn’t new, but it is gaining steam. If you don’t already, you need to consider contextual targeting in your next campaign. Driven by privacy regulations and changes in the technology landscape, the digital infrastructure that supports contextual targeting has become a lot more sophisticated There are 2 paradigms of contextual targeting:

  1. Targeting for the positive: When you use contextual targeting in this way, you target the most desirable environment to deliver your message.
  2. Avoidance and suitability: Avoidance relies on brand safety to avoid unsafe sites. Suitability is the real challenge—finding sites which complement the performance goals of your brand.

Overall, contextual targeting is best used when complimenting behavioural targeting—it’s not an either-or.

4. Brand and performance must work together

Not every B2B brand views their marketing efforts to be primarily for lead generation. Cisco’s Lori Dekker, Global Programmatic Media Lead, spoke about the importance of having a marketing function, not only to think about the customers, but the entire ecosystem that the company operates in—its employees, partners, and community. The presentation was opened by an emotional and thought-provoking video from their recent campaign “Bridge to Possible”—an initiative aimed at bettering the communities their customers live in. She brought forward the overarching idea that every company should have a role in world betterment, and that successful companies don’t start with distribution, but with building a mission-focused brand.

On a more tactical level, she emphasized the importance of letting agencies run free and be innovative in their deliverables, while also setting clear transparency frameworks around execution. Also, with an in-house media (and even creative!) teams she has demonstrated how successful B2B brands use creative to tie everything together—business goals, brand goals, and the people behind it. This message is then delivered via data and technology.

As always, we were blown away by all the information we absorbed, the insightful conversations we had and incredible people we met. I personally felt affirmed in where we are focusing our energy at StackAdapt. Even with this event just coming to a close last week, we are already gearing up for the next one in 2020—and we can’t wait.

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