OpenX Blog

Programmatic Gains Momentum in U.S. Digital Advertising

by Ronald Ramlan

The Association of National Advertisers (ANA) declared ‘programmatic’ as the marketing word of the year for 2014. Surveying its members, the association discovered that marketers had woken up to the potential of programmatic.

Does it follow that 2014 was the year of programmatic? Let’s look at the trends in digital advertising, and the driving forces behind them:

Big Picture
Online ad revenue is growing at unprecedented rates. In December 2014, the IAB and PwC reported that online ad revenue reached a historic high of $12.4 billion in Q3 2014, up 17% from Q3 2013, and was on pace to top an impressive $50 billion in 2014. What’s fueling that growth?

Nearly 90% of US digital advertising spend comes in two formats: search and display. Although search continues to represent the lion’s share, the gap has been shrinking. In its report titled “US Ad Spending – Q4 2014 Complete Forecast”, eMarketer estimates that display will overtake search beginning in 2015. One reason for that shift is programmatic, which has radically transformed display advertising over the past five years, and is now a $10.9 billion industry in the US (up 45% from 2013). Continue reading

OpenX Annual Conference: The Potential of Programmatic Sophistication

OpenX recently hosted its third annual conference, bringing together senior publishing executives and ad buyers for frank and direct discussions on the state of programmatic, as well as insight on the OpenX product road map.

OpenX CEO, Tim Cadogan opened the event on the promise and potential of programmatic sophistication. Stating that only five years ago, programmatic advertising was merely a concept. Today it’s an industry worth $7 – $8 billion. While that’s an astounding (and rare) rate of growth, it’s only the first chapter for programmatic.



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Private Marketplace Best Practices: How to Set-Up Deals that Work and Scale

Miki Rapoport, Director Product, and Eric Salsa, Business Operations

As programmatic premium takes off, many advertisers see private marketplaces (PMPs) as an ideal buying model that will deliver the audiences they shutterstock_181788290need at scale adjacent to premium, relevant content. For the most part, this is a correct assumption; PMPs do offer access to high quality and brand-safe inventory that deliver great campaign results- but just like any deal, they need to be executed effectively!

Every day we work with both buyers and sellers in PMP deals, and we’ve seen first-hand that campaign success, scalability, and operational efficiency aren’t given with PMPs; they’re targets that buyers (and sellers) must work towards. How do buyers help reach these targets? Below are some best practices we’ve witnessed for creating PMP deals that work and scale. Continue reading

OpenX Gets Pixalate’s Top Mark for Inventory Quality

On December 10, 2014, Pixalate, an independent analytics firm focused on the programmatic space, recognized OpenX Exchange with the top ranking for inventory quality. This was announced as a part of its first-ever Global Seller Trust Index, ranking the 20 top-rated sellers by inventory, viewability, fraud, masking, and engagement.

We’re pleased to share OpenX ranked first in inventory quality, second overall and among the highest in each of the five categories. According to Pixalate, the index was based upon its proprietary technology that analyzes more than 100 billion monthly impressions and delivers ratings based upon inventory quality and ad performance, along with classic reach ranking. You can read more on its methodology here.

Pixalate Continue reading

What’s a Buyer ID? And Why Is It Important?

Reed Endresen, Business Development Manager

Now that programmatic advertising is going mainstream, lots of buyers are raising questions about how it works. Chief among those questions: What’s a Buyer ID? This blog post provides everything you need to know about it.

Let’s start with the basics: What’s a Buyer ID?

Buyer ID is a unique identifier that DSPs assign to their buyers (i.e. agency trading desk, agency, brand, marketer or buyer using a DSP or bidding platform) so that those buyers can be identified in programmatic trades. The Buyer ID is a numeric or alpha numeric string that is passed in the Buyer ID field in the bid response.

Why is it important?

Prior to Buyer IDs, sellers had little insight into the agencies and trading desks that purchase inventory on behalf of their brands. A Buyer ID provides OpenX with additional transparency by identifying who the buyers are. We can then use that data to establish a direct relationship with the agency or brand in order to educate them on a range of issues, including inventory quality, scale, and ways to optimize their bid strategies. We can also work with them to create strategic deals that are executed via the buyer’s DSP. Continue reading

Cross-Screen Marketing for the Holiday Season

Rachel Powney, Marketing Director EMEA

online_spending_01_07_13The second week of October 2014 saw the launch of IAB UK Digital Upfronts and the topic on everyone’s minds: cross-screen marketing. The issue is even more urgent now that Christmas is fast approaching; we all know that consumers will simultaneously use their computers, mobiles and tablets to make their purchasing decisions.

Of course, cross-screen marketing is bigger than just the holiday season. According to Internet guru Mary Meeker, mobile is the main source of growth in Internet usage. That changes a lot of things for marketers. Smart connected devices – along with advanced screen technologies – means our long-held notions of where, when and how publishers and advertisers can engage with consumers no longer applies. We’ve already witnessed an explosion in the number of smart connected devices (in the home, the car and those we can wear) arrive, and more will come as a result of the Internet of Things. Continue reading

5 Steps for Fail Proof Ads

By Benjamin Johnson, Product Manager and Caleb Sotelo, Software Engineer at OpenX

shutterstock_231401386 (1)A complete ad server outage is rare, which is why the DFP outage of a few weeks ago generated such widespread coverage. These days, most advertising technology platforms are SaaS (Software as a Service), so there is always a chance of an outage due to problems with servers.

However highly unlikely an event, it’s always best to be prepared. OpenX and other leading ad servers provide tools to allow publishers to ensure a best possible user experience, even in the midst of an unlikely event.

Below is our Top Five best practices for implementing ads during a server situation so that content still loads quickly, your user experience remains unaffected, and, crucially, that enables you to take immediate steps to mitigate any potential revenue loss.

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The Case for Pushing the Envelope in Ad Creatives

By Rachel Powney, Marketing Director EMEA

They say that necessity is the mother of all invention. The New York Times, is a case in point. Faced with long-term financial challenges, the Times staked its future on its website to attract advertising revenue:

“We hope and believe the website — whether by selling ads or by selling subscriptions — will make money. The long-range future of the New York Times and of quality journalism depends on that”     -Bill Keller, “Talk to the Newsroom,” April 10, 2006

TNativeAdvertisinghe Times has embraced a variety of creative advertising, including native, to do the job. On 19 November 2014, the publisher pushed the envelope again when it ran its first print native ad; Shell was the brand.

This was not your average Advertorial. The scheme was designed to grab the reader’s attention. It was eight pages long, with a top sheet of opaque vellum. And the ad was enhanced by “augmented reality, so that people using the Blippar app can initiate a video by holding their phone over the page.”

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URL Masking –The Lesser Known Fraud Plaguing Automated Ad Buying Marketplaces

Recently, Advertising Age published a story on URL masking, a new scourge plaguing the digital advertising industry. URL masking is when publishers misrepresent their URLs to inventory buyers, often to trick them into buying impressions on sites with illicit or stolen content. Technically, humans see these ads however OpenX still considers it to be ad fraud. The article quotes John Murphy, Head of Market Quality at OpenX, who explains some of OpenX’s strategies for combatting URL masking. One thing is certain: OpenX is taking action, John’s team fights URL masking with a crawler that monitors sites that are not qualified for the OpenX Exchange. It flags sites where the crawler sees an OpenX tag, indicating that the company placed an ad there nonetheless.

Read the full story here.


OpenX’s Jason Fairchild Explains How Various Demand Classes Can Be Merged Into One Complete Auction

How do you merge all demand classes – particularly real-time bidding and network demand – into one big cohesive auction? OpenX’s co-founder and CRO, Jason Fairchild, takes to the white board to explain OpenX’s Demand Fusion™ in full detail.

In this brief video on ExchangeWire, Jason explains why the OpenX approach to a supply-side platform is truly unique in the industry. He illustrates how traditional SSPs work, and then compares it to the OpenX SSP and the inner workings of Demand Fusion.

Demand Fusion, as Jason points out, solves the historical problem of the wildly divergent business models used by ad networks and real-time bidders. These models prevent publishers from getting the best possible prices for their inventory because it artificially segregates competition.

If you’re interested understanding how publishers can bundle various demands sources but running low on time, make sure to watch this short video.