Marketers are cracking the code of making advertising creative and programmatic work together to target consumers, according to Nick Welch, UK business development director at ADmantX, a first-party data provider for programmatic advertising. eMarketer’s Sean Creamer spoke with Welch about how it is done.
eMarketer: How did marketers design creative in the past to cover as many consumers as possible?
Nick Welch: Creative can be very prescriptive, but that’s how it’s always been. The advertisers have done their own research and analysis, building [a model for] what they believe the customer looks like. It’s a very generic approach to targeting an audience. This generic understanding of what their audience looks like could actually in reality be very different from what the actual consumer looks like.
eMarketer: How has programmatic advertising and targeting changed this?
Welch: Programmatic enables creative to be highly personal, targeting a user based on their interests and based on their intent. What we’re trying to do is to empower marketers to make decisions based on the insight they glean from the users in real time.
Brand creative benefits from actionable targeting data, which helps marketers to understand what the real audience looks. It allows practitioners to see what consumers like and what their interests are, which could then enable marketers to tailor a number of different messages.
eMarketer: Can you give me an example of creative and programmatic working together?
Welch: Sky Italia in Italy is a good example of creative meshing with programmatic. Sky Italia didn’t have a good understanding of who their audience was for their entertainment channels, family channels and sports channels. They wanted to get an idea of the people who were most likely to subscribe to those channels. By employing the first-party data process, that helped inform who they should send creative to in order to drive subscriptions.
eMarketer: How does cross-platform advertising play into programmatic and creative?
Welch: We’re starting to understand the role devices play in a consumer’s everyday life. Consumers can be on social media via mobile, whilst working on their desktop. I think we’re just at a point now where consumers have more than one device, but the desktop still has a role.
We keep talking about when’s it going to be this “year of mobile,” but that’s not the right mindset. Mobile has its place and it’s just another screen, and the more data you have about that user who’s using that screen the better.
eMarketer: What do marketers need to keep in mind as advertising becomes increasingly cross-platform?
Welch: I have multiple media channels I’m engaging with on a daily basis, and I think marketers need to understand when I’m using my mobile and how I want to be advertised to on that platform. They have to understand why I’m using my mobile vs. my desktop. It’s important for marketers to take a step back from the data as well and think about it on an emotional level.
We always used to talk about mindsets of mobile. It’s more of a snacking media, and I [still think] that to this day. I still snack on mobile. However, there are some media channels which are very good at pressing media to your mobile. Desktop is a lean-in consumer experience, whereas I think mobile is you’re filling time.