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Programmatic Display

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Automated AI bidding

We now move beyond manual bidding and setting those bids yourselves. And indeed, we’re moving beyond even manual audiences and defining those audiences yourself. Programmatic is the next level of display advertising where we hand a lot of the reins over to machine learning.

So, for high-impact audience targeting, it is possible to use artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning algorithms to create and target high-value customer segments. They create the audiences for your business based on its observation of your business and then serve them display ads at the optimum times for the optimum price. This is called programmatic display.

It’s generally considered a premium buy and can be more expensive compared to the likes of Facebook and the Google Display Network. However, you can serve programmatic ads through DCM or other ad-serving platforms and arrangements on the likes of the Google Display Network and Facebook, and that you just can’t do through the self-serve option.

Though both Google and Facebook are developing their own self-serve programmatic options, it’s generally still reserved for the higher, more premium providers. Because everything is automatic, we generally run it through a network or media house.

Setting up targeting

So, unlike the GDN or Facebook and our mass audience buys, your targeting is set up by yourself.

  1. With programmatic, it’s generally set up based on the pixel that you’ve put on your site. It will then record the actions that you feel are most valuable on your site.
  2. Using millions of variables, it will do the heavy lifting by bringing in the robots and deciding what exactly is this audience in terms of other audiences based on your website visitors, what they do, how they interact, and how can they be developed. That’s the audience definition piece.
  3. The next stage of programmatic starts serving at the right time, because based on observations around conversion, interaction, engagement, it will serve the right ad, to the right person, at the right time.
  4. It will then also try and optimize your Ad Exchange and pay the lowest price for that CPM, for that audience, at the right time.

So it does a lot of the heavy lifting for you if you don’t have time or if it is a big premium buy that you do want to explore through your agency or your media house.

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Cathal Melinn

Cathal Melinn is a well-known digital marketing director, commercial analyst, and ecommerce specialist with over 15 years’ experience.

Cathal is a respected international conference speaker, course lecturer, and digital trainer. He specialises in driving complete understanding from students across a number of digital marketing disciplines including: paid and organic search (PPC and SEO), analytics, strategy and planning, social media, reporting, and optimisition.  Cathal works with digital professionals in over 80 countries and teaches at all levels of experience from beginner to advanced.

Alongside his training and course work, Cathal runs his own digital marketing agency and is considered an analytics and revenue generating guru - at enterprise level. He has extensive local and international experience working with top B2B and B2C brands across multiple industries.

Over his career, Cathal has worked client-Side, in digital marketing agencies and media owners with brands including HSBC, Amazon, Apple, Red Bull, Dell, Vodafone, Compare the Market, Aer Lingus, and Expedia.

He can be reached on LinkedIn here.

Data protection regulations affect almost all aspects of digital marketing. Therefore, DMI has produced a short course on GDPR for all of our students. If you wish to learn more about GDPR, you can do so here:

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    Display Advertising
    Cathal Melinn
    Skills Expert

    This module introduces the key concepts involved in display advertising. It covers the advantages of different types of display platforms and demonstrates how to set up a display advertising campaign. It also explores the key considerations for targeting and bidding in a display advertising campaign, and how to report on and optimize campaign performance.