Digital Advertising in 2015: What to Expect?

December 29, 2014

It’s been a busy year for the digital ad industry and from my vantage point as CEO of Tapstone, I have seen both the publisher and the marketer perspectives shift in critical areas such as RTB, fraud prevention and measurement metrics. All factors considered, from both the buy and sell sides of the ad industry, here is what I think we can expect to see in the year to come:

1) Private Exchanges Vs. Open RTB
In 2015, results oriented brands will show an increasing preference for private exchanges, rather than open RTB exchanges through which to buy their media. Private exchanges offer greater quality of data and inventory than open RTB exchanges, because the buyer typically has direct communication with the publisher in question. As a result, there’s greater opportunity to provide accountability and predict results.

2) Ad Fraud: The War Wages On
Over the past 24 months ad and click fraud has received a lot of attention, prompting a huge level of financial investment in to fraud monitoring and protection companies and their services. This proliferation of tools will make it harder for fraudster’s to succeed but the allocation of funds must continue if we are to maintain the benefit. There is a lot of money made from ad fraud and because of that fraudsters will always be invested in cracking preventative measures. The industry must work even harder to stay ahead of them.

3) Agencies Vs. In House Media Buying Teams – who’ll win the year?
There is a constant, rapid rate of change within the digital media ecosystem. The greatest advantage goes to the brand or brands that can take advantage of new tools and technologies as they develop and typically the first testers and adopters will be agencies rather than in-house teams. In 2015, we are expecting the launch and adoption of some exciting new technologies and as a result, agencies that rapidly test, learn and roll out successful programs utilizing these new developments, will win brand budgets over in-house teams.

4) The Relevance of the Content Used On Your Website Will Be the Next Big Metric
Who does your content speak too? Is it aimed at the right audience? How long do people read the actual content on a page before leaving? Can we write different content mechanically that is designed to reach a certain demographic? Just having content alone (even great content) will die as a tool marketers will use. The relevance to a specific audience and the ability to tailor that content quickly to make it relevant to another audience will be paramount. Think of an article written by USA Today and the same article written by the New Yorker. While the information disseminated might be identical, the use of vocabulary, grammar, sentence structure etc will be totally different and appeal to a much different demo (high school grads vs PHDs). It will not matter about age brackets or income, etc. It will matter about the relevance and look and feel of the content to individual groups

5) New Content Marketing Formats Will Appear
New content marketing companies will pop up in various forms and both native ad revenues and the publishers promoting them will grow. There will be companies saying they have the best algorithm to predict what content readers want to see. Or they will have the newest looking native ad unit that increases CTR. The companies pitches will focus around balancing UX and user happiness (which the advertisers would like to be aggressive with) with ways to maximize revenues for the publishers.

Happy New Year!

– Jonathan David, Founder & CEO, Tapstone