7 Missed Holiday Opportunities: The Untapped Potential of Programmatic Display

While the holiday season is the most profitable time of the year for retailers, it is also the most expensive. Marketers devote significant resources to reaching consumers throughout the shopping season, and most are taking advantage of programmatic display technology for the improved performance and efficiency it brings to the digital space. Not only does it allow for the purchase of individual impressions at an optimal cost per order (CPO), it also offers brands the ability to dynamically personalize messages based on consumer preferences and behavior – a trend of growing importance to truly engage consumers according to a recent consumer survey.

As programmatic buying continues to grow and gain a larger percentage of holiday advertising budgets, understanding how to leverage it while maintaining a superior customer experience is more important than ever. Here’s our list of opportunities brands could be missing out on, and what they need to do to ensure they are tapping into the full potential of programmatic display:

1. Cross-Device Marketing: Mobile ad spend is growing significantly around the world, with both the US and UK expected to double this year. However, most display ads are based on Flash technology, meaning they reach limited users on mobile devices and are not compatible with Apple’s iOS platform. In order to reach users across all devices, manufacturers, platforms, screen sizes and operating systems, marketers must use HTML5 technology. Those who have are already seeing the benefits.

2. Smart Data, not Big Data: Retailers have enormous amounts of first-party data sitting within their CRM systems, and not applying those insights to digital strategy is a huge missed opportunity. Integrating data from all sources, such as purchase behaviors, shopping patterns, email, loyalty card, and promotional history is key. By putting first-party information and insights to work in every customer interaction, retailers can drive brand affinity and sales with more relevant, meaningful messaging.

3. Real-Time Streaming: Holiday offers and availability are constantly changing during the peak shopping times. Ads for expired offers or sold-out products are a waste of marketing budget and ultimately frustrating to consumers. In order to ensure that promotional offers are up to date, online retailers must synchronize their ads with their offers, stock levels, prices and promotions in real-time .

4. Priority Scoring: Programmatic display allows marketers to deliver one-to-one personalized messaging for each user. Leveraging prioritization technologies to better weight products or categories on the basis of margins, inventory availability or special offers ensures brands show every consumer the products and offers most relevant and most likely to initiate a sale.

5. Brand Reputation: Banner Burnout is still a common phenomenon. Without frequency caps, brands can overwhelm consumers by serving ads too frequently, causing consumers to feel “stalked” and ultimately leaving them with negative brand associations. Put the right controls in place to ensure you are respecting your consumers and protecting the user experience.

6. Strategy: Many marketers rely on instinct when they optimize their campaigns on self-service platforms. However, an effective strategy requires more than just a target CPO. Campaign splitting, ROI, priority scores, recommendation algorithms, and frequency caps should also be considered – the best campaigns are made by machines, but optimized by humans.

7. Transparency: In order to have full control over their budget for the holiday season, marketers cannot operate with non-transparent pricing models and opaque margins from their technology partners. Work with vendors that fully disclose media costs and fees up front to ensure they are optimizing your budget, and not their own margins.

Interested in learning about Sociomantic’s programmatic display solutions? Get in touch with us to find out more.