Google’s (Non) Announcement: 3 Possibilities for Cookie Depreciation and the Future of Post-Cookie Identifiers

Google’s (Non) Announcement: 3 Possibilities for Cookie Depreciation and the Future of Post-Cookie Identifiers

While Google’s recent press release on the deprecation of third-party cookies offered little in the way of new information, it forced the ad tech world to face the future with a bit more clarity and perspective. Google dashed any last hopes of a silver bullet with regard to unique identifiers (I now realize there was a small part of me still hoping for a browser based Ad ID), and made it clear that they would not involve themselves in any alternative, consent-based identifier framework (though it also seems that they will not obstruct such efforts). The programmatic advertising world is facing their options having heard Google’s qualifications, but for real this time.

Three core tactics present themselves as Chrome depreciates the third-party cookie.

 

1. Consent-based, Cookie-less Identifiers and Strategies

One clear path will be to use consent-based, cookie-less identifiers. Many large players in the industry are working towards these identifiers including but not limited to LiveRamp, The Trade Desk, and Lotame. These solutions seek to preserve the framework by which the Lumascape primarily transacts programmatic advertising –identity–while sourcing identity in a privacy compliant manner. While Google clarified that they will not be investing in this type of solution, these new identity products should still work, with some caveats. The size and scale of the addressable web within the scope of these new identity products remains unknown, and the big question is, what portion of the web are advertisers willing to sacrifice in order to maintain the status quo? Quite a lot, I suspect, especially upon consideration of the investments made into DMP’s, first party data, and other countless data strategies over the years.

The typical tactics of audience targeting, re-marketing, and others will continue to work in some capacity, and agencies and brands will continue to be able to communicate those identities to DSPs and down the line for execution. The scale and addressability will all just be some amount worse, as it is now compared to a year ago, and as it was a year ago compared to the year before that.

 

google chrome no cookies

 

 

2. Google’s Proposal: FLoC Buy In

Another alternative is Google’s proposed set of solutions. The Federated Learning of Cohorts (FLoC) adheres to the rigors of privacy restrictions (self-imposed or otherwise) without requiring user consent. It sounds great, but there are a few trade-offs, most of which remain murky. Google claims “that advertisers can expect to see at least 95% of the conversions per dollar spent when compared to cookie-based advertising,” but the methodology with which they came to that conclusion is not transparent. Google additionally proposed that audience creation and measurement can be accomplished using FLoC; these proposals, however, remain incomplete and subject to change. The lack of clear information and plans from Google makes FLoC difficult to plan for and invest in. No one is clear about how well it’s going to work, and how much work it will take to get it to work.

We can at least say that FLoC will be one solution among three that will make a large portion of the web semi-addressable, with “semi” being a flexible and unknown qualifier for some time. Another large portion of the web (everything but Chrome) will remain non-addressable.

 

3. Just Let All These Post-Cookie Identifiers Go

While staring down the prospects of unique identity and FLoC in the future, one must ask, is it really worth it? Have we strayed too far from the light? Are all these sacrifices and efforts worth hanging on to whatever scraps are left of addressable programmatic media?

Each will have to answer that question for themselves; however, we can say that with a combination of intelligent contextual targeting with aggressive optimization based on non-identity signals, audience targeted programmatic does not have a monopoly on digital performance marketing. In fact, in the grand scheme of targetable audiences that exist in the ecosystem now, very few can justify their price against their performance. Dynamic and algorithmic optimization that goes beyond bid modifiers using non-identity signals reign supreme in performance, and letting go of identity seems like the sustainable bet.

Furthermore, while the addressable web shrinks, the rest of it goes on sale. As buyers concentrate their bidding power on those auctions where the user is known and consented, those auctions where the user is not known will have fewer bidders and ultimately lower media cost.

In the end, the smartest strategy will be one that can make the best use of all the available tools. A programmatic media plan that can work with the addressable web in the new era and understand its limitations while also testing and applying non-identity based programs will be the winner. The best planners and executors will also have a keen understanding of how their different identity and non-identity tactics will interact with their measurement and attribution solutions.

 

arthur hainline bidtellect

Arthur Hainline is the VP of Product at Bidtellect

What is Bid Shading? Behind the Platform

What is Bid Shading? Behind the Platform

Bid shading is a campaign capability that can save advertisers money. Here’s what it means and how it works.

What is Bid Shading?

First, some background: Second price auctions incentivized bidding at the price of the value. First price auctions incentivize bidding at the lowest price that will win the auction, or the price of the value – whichever is lower. First price auctions now make up the majority of programmatic auctions. 

Bid shading reduces the bid price to save money on first price auctions (first price sealed-bid auctions/blind auctions). And because of the scale of programmatic first price auctions, Bidtellect is in a position to have a good sense of what the lowest winning price of a slice of inventory is. 

How Does It Work

Bidtellect already helps our advertisers understand what the value of any slice of inventory is worth to their optimization goals, but now we can help our advertisers make that second part of the decision: What is the lowest price we can bid and still win?

Below is what a typical Win Rate vs. Bid Price curve looks like. There’s some range of bid prices where Bidtellect won’t do anything because the bid price really impacts the win rate. But take this example: If you value a slice of inventory much higher than $6, you’re really just throwing away inventory because your win rate doesn’t increase substantially. Let’s say you value the slice of inventory at $10 based on your optimization goals. With bid shading turned on, we will take a $10 bid and we’ll reduce it down to $6 and save you that $4 without impacting the outcome of the auction.

Win Rate vs. Bid Price curve BID SHADING

What Are the Benefits?

Bidtellect has the best optimization to determine price to value for each auction according to our 14 optimization goals and multiple goals

Layering our new bid shading technology will increase performance, save money, and maximize advertiser’s value.

Bid Shading Fees

Bidtellect will charge 20% of SAVINGS found by bid shading

If our bid shading did not find savings, you will not be charged

Example: If the bid price before bid shading was $5, and Bidtellect’s bid shading reduced the price to $4, the advertiser will be charged $0.20 as the bid shading fee

Bidtellect Releases Generation 5.0 of Native DSP: These Are the Exact Updates

Bidtellect Releases Generation 5.0 of Native DSP: These Are the Exact Updates

This week, Bidtellect announced Generation 5.0 of its nDSP (Native Demand Side Platform). The latest generation is a culmination of at least two years of advancements that further differentiate Bidtellect from other Native and omni-channel DSPs in the industry, creating one of the most performance-driven, client-first, and brand- and privacy-safe platforms in the space.

The move to Generation 5.0 has been overseen by Chief Technology Officer, Michael Conway: “I take pride in the fact that we have defined a new level of performance within our platform that has outperformed our competitors in almost every KPI and metric when compared through head-to-head tests by our clients.”

Generation 5.0 is comprised of advancements in three main categories: Insights & Optimization, Usability, and Privacy. 

Here’s the breakdown:

Insights & Optimization: Improve Decision-Making from Placement-Level to High-Level Strategy

Bidtellect’s optimization capabilities through its IntellibidTM suite of technologies are a key component to earning maximum ROI for advertisers and informing strategic campaign decisions.To further support optimization goals and offer deeper insights for its clients, Bidtellect has released several new transparency and advanced analytics features. 

  • Pacing Visibility: Better pacing insight in the DSP 
  • CPCV10 CPCV10-New-Flat CPCV (10 seconds): A brand new bid type in the DSP, Cost per Completed 10 second View. Only pay when 10 seconds of video has completed 
  • Geo Reporting: Geo Reporting with visualization in the DSP 
  • Report Builder: Build custom reports and schedule email delivery from within the DSP 
  • PageURL Reporting
  • Native DCO (Dynamic Creative Optimization): improvements
  • Multiple Conversion Events for Optimization 
  • eCPC Optimization Goal Type: A brand new optimization goal whose objective is to achieve the least expensive cost per click for a campaign 

 

Usability: Client-First Ease of Use

In addition to optimization performance driven from placement level granularity and decision-making power, Bidtellect also prioritized usability for its clients. Generation 5.0 now provides more information and cuts down on the amount of time required to make changes to campaigns.

  • Bulk Edit / Advanced Bulk Editing: Bulk Edit Ad Types, Inventory Quality, Optimization Goals, Categories, and Audiences 
  • Audit Trail Enhancements: Better, searchable, more functional, and more complete audit trail 
  • Creative Flighting: Set start dates and end dates for individual creatives within a campaign 
  • Audience Page Redesign: A total redesign of the audience creation and management section of the DSP 
  • Cross Device and Frequency Capping
  • Creative Flighting
  • Creative Validation Refactor
  • New Visualization Library for DSP

 

Privacy and Compliance: Leading the Movement to a Cookie-Less Future

Bidtellect has continued to ensure that it complies fully with the industry’s ever-changing privacy and data regulations, giving consumers greater control and transparency into their data. To provide this assurance, Generation 5.0 adheres to the latest regulations and IAB frameworks required to maintain a competitive edge.

  • TCF 2.0 (Transparency Consent Framework) Compliance
  • GDPR Compliance
  • CCPA Compliance
  • TAG Certified
  • Cookieless: Trade Desk ID Integrations
  • Cookieless: LiveRamp Identity Link  (Bidtellect was the first DSP to integrate with both)
  •  

 

Reach out for a head-to-head performance test.

Want more need-to-know info? Subscribe to our monthly Bidtellectual newsletter!


Shifting With the Times and How Brands Can Help

Shifting With the Times and How Brands Can Help

People worldwide are caring for loved ones, experiencing financial distress and making sure their families are safe and provided for.  Corporations have transitioned their workforces to the homes and apartments of millions across the globe. At the same time, marketers are tasked with ensuring the future health of their business. When thinking about brand messaging, there’s a fine line between engaging consciously and pushing an agenda. The answer isn’t to ignore the problem, but work within this new world.  

The Realities of the Current Media Landscape:

Traditional advertising channels that brands normally use to engage simply won’t reap the same reach and results due to current events.  OOH is challenged with stay at home mandates and major live TV events are being cancelled globally. As millions are getting used to this new reality within their homes and apartments, digital and internet connected devices have become the farthest reaching and most consistent avenues for reach.

Looking at the digital advertising industry holistically, we see two key changes happening:

(1)  A surge in traffic due to increased internet usage, creating more overall digital ad supply.

(2)  A decrease in ad buying demand as travel, entertainment, sports, airline, hotels, hospitality, and tourism digital spending seemingly grinds to a halt.

Major Internet service providers like Verizon are reporting huge spikes in device and internet usage thanks to home office work and social isolation. Between the weeks of 3/12 to 3/19, Verizon saw web and internet traffic climb 20%, streaming services increase 12%, and online gaming skyrocket 75%, while social media usage didn’t change compared with the prior week. (CNET).

As more inventory becomes available and fewer brands are competing to drive prices up, this creates a unique price efficiency situation within digital and programmatic ad buying channels. Bidtellect ran an analysis of the publisher inventory accessed and bought across 30+ SSPs:

From February 2020 to March 2020 alone, we’ve seen a 9.59% decrease in average impression cost. When Comparing March figures to January, that decrease jumps further to 17.1%.

Looking back at 2019 was a different story, where we saw a 15.79% increase from February to March.

Comparing March 2019 to March 2020 we see a 10.6% decrease in impression costs.

Meanwhile, comparing February 2019 to February 2020 we saw a 40.35% increase in impression costs, which can be attributed to overall increases in demand for programmatic media and shifts from 2nd price to 1st price auctions.

This means: While seasonal and monthly trends usually play a role here, there is certainly an uncharacteristic drop in cost when looking at February to March MoM & YoY – most logically due to an influx of total impressions and decrease in total demand. While digital ad investments will certainly go further today, how do marketers go about messaging in an ethical, brand-safe, and impactful way?  

How Your Messaging Can Weather the Storm

How do marketers go about messaging in an ethical, brand-safe, and impactful way? There’s a fine line between engaging consciously and coming off as insensitive or product pushing.

(1) Think of Your Employees & Brand Advocates First 
Is your brand currently helping its employees through tough situations (Kohls), helping schools (Zoom) or citizens nation-wide (AT&T/Comcast)? People today view brands as living, breathing entities, so sharing earned or owned content that demonstrates how they’re doing their part to support, inspire & help can go a long way towards building brand equity.

(2) Create Valuable Content
The internet is oversaturated with COVID-19 messaging. People are actively looking for positive and helpful content to consume and share. Can your financial product save people money to support their families? Can your B2B solution provide efficiencies for companies that are hurting right now? Distribute effective and timely digital content across Native formats, while OLV and CTV are excellent avenues to drive engagement with helpful video content.

(3) Refresh Your Creative
Ensure the tone of creative messaging and imagery is one of empathy. Are you taking into account the thoughts and struggles of the everyday American? Can you succinctly communicate how you can help them or provide value during this uncertain time?

(4) Brand Safety
Ensure brand safe and contextually relevant publisher environments.  Companies like IAS/Admantx offer natural language processing technology that has the semantic intelligence at the page URL level to understand and block undesirable contextual environments. Remember not to go too far in blocking. Almost every news site is reporting on coronavirus right now.

(5) Plan for the Future and a World Beyond COVID-19
While the health and economic impacts on individuals in countries across the world cannot be downplayed, one thing is certain: this too shall pass. eMarketer is “cautiously optimistic” in their latest COVID-19 forecast that a potential global economic downturn could also be short-lived, mitigating negative impacts on the worldwide ad market on a full-year basis.

BOTTOM LINE: The brands that will make the greatest impact and weather the storm are those that can get positive, educational, and valuable content in front of people. Content that will educate them on how they can improve their current and foreseeable financial situation, provide stability for their families, improve their business- and professional lives, positively enhance their health and mental state, and empower them to excel in these uncertain times.  

Want more need-to-know info? Subscribe to our monthly Bidtellectual newsletter!


 

5 Key Takeaways from Bidtellect’s 2019 Report

5 Key Takeaways from Bidtellect’s 2019 Report

The important trends of 2019 to prepare you for a successful 2020.

Bidtellect’s Native Report was created to provide advertisers with important insights and trends in the digital advertising industry – specifically, Native Advertising.

Check out our 5 Key Takeaways

To download the full report, click here

1. Dynamic Goal Setting Leads to Highest ROI

Dynamic, multiple goal setting for maximum optimization consistently led to highest ROI.

Multiple Goal Types (measured as a goal type itself) Outperformed CTR by 32% in 2019

Multiple Goal Types’  average revenue increased 38% from 2018 to 2019 and increased 40% from Q1 to Q4

2. Contextual Targeting is More Than an Answer to Privacy: It’s a Performance Tool

Contextual targeting – long part of Bidtellect’s capability wheelhouse – is gaining value for more than a privacy solution, but a tool to close the engagement gap.

One client saw 88.3% VCR using contextual targeting.

Bidtellect announced a deepened partnership with Just Media, emphasizing the use of contextual-driven decisioning to reach decision-makers. 

3. Video Ad Revenue is Growing Steadily

 

Use of video – and its revenue – is steadily growing.

Completion Rate (Video) as a Goal Type increased in revenue by 19% from 2018 to 2019.

Video held a top revenue spot across all four quarters in 2019.

4. Creative Assets Are KEY According to Whopping Request Growth

 

Greater value is being placed on creative assets that factor in art + data to increase performance.

From 2018 to 2019 creative requests to Bidtellect’s in-house creative team, [b]+studio, increased by 134% in 2019 

Education – the vertical with the highest growth – increased by a whopping 446%.

Best practice tip: Always Bring Value. Make sure a “call to action” is in your copy description.

5. Don’t Forget About Handheld Devices

 

Meaningful, prolonged engagement across devices stayed consistent and comparable over 2019, proving the equal importance of content consumption across devices.

Average CTR for Tablet jumped to an average of 0.35% in 2019 – up from 0.28% in 2018.

Mobile’s average CTR from 2018 to 2019 didn’t change: it stayed the highest of any device at 0.35%.

Download the Full Report here.

About the Report:

Bidtellect’s platform processes over 55 billion Native auctions daily across 58 million distinctly targetable placements, and this number continues to grow quarter over quarter. We analyze data from the start of an auction through post-click consumer activity including but not limited to the metrics captured in this report.

Want more need-to-know info? Subscribe to our monthly Bidtellectual newsletter!


 

Tips to Work from Home Effectively

Tips to Work from Home Effectively

As the world settles into a new uncertain existence, many are now working from home (or working from “quarantine”). A new normal, yes, but infinitely luckier than the thousands who face unemployment due to business closures. This piece is for those lucky enough to still work even from home, eager to maintain productivity, meet their professional goals, and maintain a semblance of normalcy. Thanks to fellow Bidtellectuals, below are tips to “work from home” effectively from wherever your new isolated office space is. 

1. Keep a Regular Schedule 

While it’s easy to wake up when you want, saunter over to your laptop, start work in your pajamas and never take them off – it could also mean you never really “turn off” your day if you never actually signal its beginning. Work to wake up at the same time every day, change into work clothes (there are some different opinions on this, but most agree that changing clothes signals “work time” and helps motivation, not to mention video conference meetings), and maintain your regular work schedule including meetings, check-ins, even lunch times. Schedule in time for a walk or break if you are able to get outside for some fresh air, or a home workout video to get your body moving. At the end of the day, close all screens and perhaps light a candle or put on some music to signal the end of your day. Many in quarantine in China mentioned the difficulty of never “turning off” since you can technically continue working if everything is there, but your brain needs a reset to maintain productivity in the long run.

2. The Car is a Great Place to Make Call

 

Live with a partner? Roommates? Young children? Bidtellectuals recommend finding a quiet space right in your driveway – your car. A new space could refresh the mind, provide some new views of the outdoors, and it also encourages focus during conversations free from interruptions or distractions. Other recommendations included a tree house (really!) or if you’re in a city apartment, try your bathroom or bedroom. Why not! Take a fresh and open approach to meeting and working in general – it will make it a lot easier than beating yourself up or making it all a drag. 

And while we’re at it about being positive about working from home, be positive in all communication in general. As CTO Mike Conway says: “I like succinct and clear messages, but I know that the less face time I have with people, the less they know how to interpret my tone in writing. When you work remotely full-time, you must be positive, to the point where it may feel like you’re being overly positive. Otherwise, you risk sounding like a jerk. It’s unfortunate, but true. So embrace the exclamation point! Find your favorite emoji :D.”

3. Set Space Boundaries

 

This was a great tip from the New York Times. Make sure you create a designated office “space” in your home or apartment. If you have a home office, spruce it up (even if it’s just a quick clean) and ensure your WiFI is up-to-speed and all video conferencing capabilities are ready. If you and your partner share a home office, determine if you’ll be sharing it at all hours, what to do if the other has a call, or if you want to create a separate space for each of you. If you don’t have an office, it’s especially important to designate a desk or workspace in your home. Keep your laptop there, make sure it’s clean, and it will signal “work” time for your brain. Similarly, when you take a break, try to find a new space in your home. Consistency is key.

4. Plan Breaks and Virtual “Happy Hours”

Virtual one-on-one lunch? Virtual group happy hour? These are the new normal and YES you should schedule them! Social isolation during the coronavirus outbreak (and working from home in general) can cause a dip in mood if you don’t combat it. Actively schedule breaks or social time like you would a work commitment. Use Zoom, Google Hangouts, or FaceTime (or Skype or any other free video conferencing tool) to catch up. Maybe dress up a little or put on some music to make it fun. Who says pouring a happy hour cocktail (or mocktail!) at home has to be boring? Check out this piece in the New York Times on how to throw a successful virtual happy hour. One key takeaway: too many people makes it tough to hear – now is the time for fun intimate catch ups!

5. Plan Cultural “Outings” Once a Week to the MET or Buckingham Palace

Craving some time outside? Or a taste of life before quarantine? Theaters, operas, and museums may be closed, but many are offering virtual tours or streaming. Tour Buckingham Palace in London, the Frick Museum in New York City, or the Frida Kahlo Museum in Mexico City. This piece in House Beautiful offers a list of wonderful homes and museums to virtually tour. The Metropolitan Opera will begin streaming encore presentations from their award-winning Live in HD series on the company website for the duration of their closure. All “Nightly Met Opera Streams” will begin at 7:30 p.m. and will remain available via the homepage for 20 hours. Read more here on Gothamist.

Want more need-to-know info? Subscribe to our monthly Bidtellectual newsletter!


Charlotte Otremba is Sr. Manager of Communications and Marketing at Bidtellect.

SPOTLIGHT: WOMEN AT BIDTELLECT Lysa Vincent

In this Spotlight Series, we ask women at Bidtellect how they navigate career, success, and thriving as a woman in ad tech.

SPOTLIGHT: WOMEN AT BIDTELLECT Yulia Khudzik

In this Spotlight Series, we ask women at Bidtellect how they navigate career, success, and thriving as a woman in ad tech.

SPOTLIGHT: WOMEN AT BIDTELLECT Carolina Escobar

In this Spotlight Series, we ask women at Bidtellect how they navigate career, success, and thriving as a woman in ad tech.