This week Choozle interviewed current programmatic platform user Thayer Media to get a little more insight into why agencies are making the switch to programmatic, benefits of programmatic, and a little advice for those marketers and advertisers thinking of pulling the lever on programmatic advertising.
Choozle: What caused you to switch to programmatic advertising?
Chessie Little, Media Buyer for Thayer Media: As we were working with third party vendors utilizing audience segmentation and programmatic capabilities, we found that we were often left in a position of not knowing what contributed to a campaign’s performance. While the campaign might have been quite successful, we didn’t have the detail of why, so in turn, couldn’t showcase those insights to the client. Conversely, in the cases that something hadn’t worked as well as we had hoped (or not the same as the first time around), it was even more uncomfortable not to understand what made the campaign fall short, or what we should try differently in the future.
We also found that it was quite tedious to relay all of the compelling factors that might impact the way we would target for a particular client (and hit-or-miss if there was someone on the other end that would understand it and put it to use effectively). Those details are things we know inherently from our deep understanding of our clients, but it’s nearly impossible to communicate every relevant possibility for targeting purposes to someone not intimate with the account. Additionally, since we couldn’t see an exhaustive list of all of the targeting possibilities on the vendor’s side, we didn’t have a way to know if we’d missed something valuable, or to suggest alternate approaches.
In essence, we found that since we are the common point to the strategy and knowledge base on a client, we are the people best equipped to evaluate segmentation approaches and targeting strategies first-hand. Additionally, it gave us the ability to be much more responsive by seeing for ourselves what was working (and not) in real-time. That made optimization far more effective than waiting to respond to high-level weekly/monthly vendor reports that didn’t often give us enough detail to provide feedback that was valuable enough to truly impact campaign performance.
Choozle: What type of programmatic service are you currently using – managed or self-serve?
Chessie Little, Media Buyer for Thayer Media: We’ve been working with Choozle for about four years now. We found we moved rather quickly from using third party vendors to a self-serve option.
Choozle: Why did you choose to run programmatic this way?
Chessie Little, Media Buyer for Thayer Media: All of the same reasons listed above in question 1.
Choozle: What has been the biggest benefit of running your digital campaigns through a programmatic platform?
Chessie Little, Media Buyer for Thayer Media: The ability to know what works best for each client and each campaign we run for them, and to be able to communicate very detailed insights about the types of audiences that are responding best. We’re also able to be far more nimble in implementing new campaigns or changing course, so we’re able to be much more responsive to immediate needs.
Choozle: What has been the biggest challenge of running your digital campaigns through a programmatic platform?
Chessie Little, Media Buyer for Thayer Media: There are many factors and strategies to consider to achieve the best results for a campaign, so there is a constant education process to evolve our knowledge and expertise. Keeping up with new capabilities and best practices take a lot of commitment but it is worth it in terms of what we’re able to do for our clients.
Choozle: What is one piece of advice you would give to other agencies/advertisers who are wanting to switch to programmatic?
Chessie Little, Media Buyer for Thayer Media: Be open to taking the time to really learn the platform and the best ways to use it. Commit time and resources so you can maximize what the system can do. And then just dive in – don’t be afraid to try different approaches so your campaigns continuously evolve and improve!
Are you wanting more transparency and insight into your digital advertising campaigns? Take a look at programmatic and don’t be afraid to pull that lever.