Small and midsize businesses (SMBs) now have a substantial digital marketing opportunity at their disposal – programmatic media buying. Unfortunately, a significant number of SMB marketers are not taking advantage of this opportunity. According to a Forrester Consulting study, programmatic continues to take a backseat to tried-and-true marketing tactics with 61% of respondents implementing digital advertising tactics.
“Programmatic” ad buying can be defined as the use of automation to buy digital advertising, versus the traditional and timely processes of the past. The means in which programmatic ads are bought and sold is through a live auction, on a per-impression basis. This purchasing model provides SMBs with the means to reach their potential customers with a targeted message throughout the buying cycle, regardless of which publisher websites they are visiting.
Before the birth of programmatic media buying platforms, nearly all digital ads were only available for bulk purchase through publisher websites. SMBs, as well as all advertisers, had to buy ad inventory upfront to reach their target audience for a given campaign and often required large budgets. The challenge for SMBs was that they didn't have access to the massive resources of more major advertisers, and, therefore, felt limitations regarding scale and reach. In general, return on ad spend (RoAS) was lower, due to the lack of control over the type of inventory available for purchase, the lack of transparency, and the inability to make changes in real-time.
Now that programmatic media buying has become so widespread, it’s catching the attention of virtually all companies, regardless of size, and there are different ways of utilizing it depending on your business. For instance, although display advertising offers a nearly infinite supply of inventory, not all marketers need to flood the market to create impact. This marketing strategy enables SMBs to reach the consumers that they want to influence throughout their purchase path, including when they show purchase intent and even after they have left your website.
So why should SMBs be investing in programmatic advertising? The main reason is that SMB owners cannot rely wholly on one marketing strategy to generate large quantities of valuable traffic and sales for their business. Programmatic media buying, used in tandem with a variety of marketing strategy, can produce successful marketing campaigns.
There are approximately 28 million small businesses in the United States alone, many of whom have most likely not even scratched the surface of the value of display. There is so much value in RTB and programmatic marketing, with the added benefit of not having to commit massive amounts of dollars to particular publishers – allowing marketers to optimize and improve strategies in real time. The rise of programmatic media buying, paired with easy to use tools and platforms, have given SMBs the power to market to their potential customers on a more granule level, using multiple channels, all while maximizing ROI– thanks to better audience data and insights. With the ability to gain greater insights into an audience, comes the capacity to make better-informed decisions based on characteristics, and purchasing behavior and ultimately maximize RoAS. All one needs to know to successfully execute programmatic advertising is an audience, budget, campaign creative and familiarize themselves with an easy-to-use, self-service programmatic platform to unleash the endless possibilities.
A seasoned digital media entrepreneur, Andrew Fischer is the CEO and Co-Founder of Choozle, the leading self-service programmatic digital marketing platform which now powers media execution for over 800+ global advertisers. Prior to Choozle, Andrew co-founded and built the RGM Alliance, a premium focused online advertising network that reaches over 120 MM consumers in the US. Andrew holds a BA in Economics from Vanderbilt, and an MBA from UCLA’s Anderson School of Business. Connect with him on LinkedIn and on Twitter.