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Programmatic |


Programmatic Ad Issues: The Top Problems & How to Solve Them

April 17 2018 by Ken Roberts

What’s been called a “must-have in marketers’ and media publishers’ toolkit” by Think with Google

Programmatic advertising.

There’s just one problem: It’s not a perfect science. And these imperfections result in some headaches for brands using programmatic. (Exhibit A: the industry’s crisis over ads appearing next to inappropriate content online.)

Today, some brands are wary that programmatic can create value for them. In fact, a recent survey of experienced ad buyers around the globe reveals there are three top concerns on the mind of brand advertisers in 2018.

The bad news: These are some serious problems. 

The good news: Each has a solution when you use Pathmatics.

programmatic advertising in Pathmatics

1. Ad buyers are concerned about a lack of consistent measurement.

Nearly half of all ad buyers surveyed (49%) said “lack of consistent measurement / metrics” was a leading concern. 

Many marketers lean on the automation of programmatic advertising to do the heavy lifting; after all, that’s the allure, right? 

However, to truly be effective, it’s critical to put in the hours, and measure the effectiveness of all campaigns and vendors. In the words of AdAge: “It turns out that measurement is a key enabler of improving programmatic buying—not something made irrelevant by it.” 

How Pathmatics solves the problem: With Pathmatics, you can access your programmatic data for each individual creative. This includes total spend compared to impressions, as well as top sites your ad is being served on. Not sure how to judge performance? You can compare the performance of individual creatives to your top competitors in real time.

2. Ad buyers are concerned about lack of transparency and visibility.

The second and third leading concerns, also according to the survey, are “lack of agency transparency” and “lack of visibility on third parties.” 

When working with an agency, many marketers (42%, says the survey) don’t feel they have total visibility into the strategy and planning that goes into the launch of a programmatic campaign. 

Another recent survey confirmed this sentiment: the Association of National Advertisers found that most marketers are taking “strategy and campaign direction in-house.” However, it does appear that agencies are still taking the lead on execution. 

And, related to the overall lack of visibility into third parties, marketers often don’t have insight into the data utilized to target audiences, among other technical details. It’s no wonder that 39% reported feeling concerned about this issue. 

How Pathmatics solves the problem: With Pathmatics, you don’t have to rely on a third party to decode strategy and ad placement. The brand report will provide insight into who your brand is buying from, top sites your ads are actually appearing on, share of your spend per site, as well as aforementioned metrics related to each individual ad placement.

3. Ad buyers are concerned about ad fraud.

We aren’t surprised that another 37% of ad buyers are worried ad fraud. The Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) and Ernst & Young reported that fraud costs the industry roughly $8.2 billion every year. 

And AdWeek recently stated, “More than half of paid programming impressions are probably fraudulent...” 

So why is this happening? Most fraudulent traffic is caused by non-human traffic, like clicks from bots, or vendors that are abusing the system (e.g. click farms and ad injections). For more on the various types of ad fraud, check out this post from Marketing Land

How Pathmatics solves programmatic ad issues: Many advertisers primarily use Pathmatics to hold vendors and providers accountable by auditing activity on a daily basis. You can ensure creatives are actually running on contracted sites through efficient purchase channels.

See how Pathmatics works.

About Author
Ken Roberts

Ken Roberts has been immersed in marketing and technology for over a decade, merging creative strategies with the latest technology, to bring products together with the people who need them. With degrees in Engineering, Computer Science and an MBA, Ken’s background in product management, marketing, sales, analytics and technology lends to his ability to attack product challenges on multiple levels. Ken began his career developing software solutions for medical records before transitioning to marketing. Ken focused on building marketing departments and operating in-house agencies. Ken’s experience with digital platforms, internet based marketing, lead scoring and business intelligence, and reporting, as well as a keen market understanding, are a welcome addition to Pathmatics, only matched by a leadership philosophy that encourages high creativity and ownership from his team.

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