Interactive Advertising Bureau
28 February 2024

Programmatic Perspectives Omnichannel FAQ Blog - What it is, What it’s Not.. and How and Why You Should Implement it As Part Of Your Programmatic Strategy

IAB Europe’s Programmatic Trading Committee has put together this handy FAQ to demystify common questions on omnichannel strategies. In this ‘programmatic perspectives’ series blog article, you will learn all you need to know about omnichannel advertising and much more. Thank you to Youssef R'Miki, Team Lead, Supply Partnerships EMEA (Smaato,  part of Verve Group) and Andrew Streets, Technical Account Manager, Novatiq for their valuable contributions.

1. What is programmatic omnichannel advertising?

YR - Programmatic omnichannel advertising can be defined as a digital marketing approach that combines automated (hence programmatic) technology with various online channels to create a seamless and consistent brand experience. It targets audiences on websites, social media, and mobile apps with personalized messaging, adjusting campaigns in real time for better results. The key is to maintain a unified message and adapt campaigns in real time based on data insights. The idea here is to enhance brand visibility and ensure that the right message reaches the right audience.

2. How does programmatic omnichannel differ from traditional programmatic advertising?

YR - Traditional programmatic focuses on automated ad-buying for a single channel, like display or video ad on a website where the focus is to efficiently reach a potential customer based on the content of this website (i.e, clothing retailer ad on a fashion website). Whereas programmatic omnichannel uses various digital channels such as social media, search, and email. The goal is a unified brand experience across these diverse channels, via personalized messaging and targeted audience engagement. The big difference is that programmatic omnichannel advertising reaches more places and focuses on smooth engagement across different online areas. Traditional programmatic is good at automating ads in one place, but it doesn't have the same complete approach and audience focus that programmatic omnichannel has across the online world.

3. What are the primary goals of programmatic omnichannel advertising?

YR - The main goals of a programmatic omnichannel strategy are to smoothly interact with the intended audience on different online platforms. It does this by sending personalized and consistent messages, using data-driven insights to improve where ads are placed. The idea is to boost how recognizable a brand is, make advertising campaigns work better, and, in the end, offer customers a unified, memorable, and relevant experience that leads to better outcomes and conversions across the online marketing world.

4. What are the key components of a programmatic omnichannel strategy?

YR - Essential channels in a programmatic omnichannel approach include things like display ads, video ads, social media ads, search engine marketing, emails, mobile ads, content marketing, native ads, connected TV (CTV) ads, programmatic audio ads, website improvements, data management, customer relationships, automated marketing, and targeting across different devices. All these pieces come together to create a smooth, data-driven, and consistent brand experience across many online platforms.

5. How does programmatic omnichannel advertising benefit businesses and customers?

YR - Programmatic omnichannel advertising helps businesses run smarter marketing campaigns that connect with people on different online platforms. This increases brand recognition and how much customers get involved. It lets businesses aim precisely at their audience, use data to improve, and send personalized messages, all of which can make the return on investment (ROI) and conversions better. For customers, it means a smooth and steady experience with a brand, getting content that matters to them, which makes their online time more enjoyable.

AS - The most important benefit to businesses is the ability to increase reach and exposure. The ability to expose your potential customer base across multiple channels with a consistent message provides many opportunities to communicate with your potential customers without annoying them by focusing on one channel. For customers, the benefit comes from not being inundated with a brand’s messaging on one platform which can inadvertently create a negative brand perception and generally annoy the potential customer.

6. Can small businesses effectively implement programmatic omnichannel advertising, or is it only for large corporations?

YR - Programmatic omnichannel advertising is useful for businesses of all sizes. Even though big companies have more resources, small businesses can still benefit from the cost-effective targeting and automation of programmatic tech. Programmatic omnichannel advertising’s flexibility and scalability fit different budgets and needs. By concentrating on certain channels and audiences, small businesses can make a tailored and efficient strategy that matches their goals and budget. 

7. What are some common misconceptions about programmatic omnichannel advertising?

YR - A common misunderstanding about programmatic omnichannel advertising is thinking that it's only for big budgets or large companies. Actually, it can be adjusted for different budgets and is available for small businesses too. There's also a myth that it compromises privacy, but more ethical practices and data protection are used to respect user privacy.

AS - Small businesses can absolutely benefit from omnichannel programmatic advertising. The ability to target a specific audience across many potential touch points is easier now than ever before due to omni-channel DSPs becoming more prevalent over the last few years.

8. Can you provide examples of successful programmatic omnichannel campaigns?

YR - Ecommerce sites are the ones that come into my mind when thinking of programmatic omnichannel campaigns. Imagine you're shopping at a favorite eCommerce shop. You look at a pair of running shoes but don't buy them. Later, when you're on social media, you see an ad from that shop showing those exact shoes. That's programmatic omnichannel advertising in action. A shop uses data to understand your interests and shows you personalized ads across different online platforms, creating a seamless and connected shopping experience.This approach increases user engagement and drives more sales. We also have plenty of instances like this on our platform: Verve Group sees users across multiple channels, including mobile and CTV. This allows us to connect their user journey and use such insights for cross-platform targeting. For example, we use audience segments built from our in-app data to understand and reach the same or similar users on CTV. In addition, cross-platform reach allows us to extend campaigns from mobile to CTV and vice versa.

9. What are the challenges associated with implementing a programmatic omnichannel strategy?

YR - Using a programmatic omnichannel strategy can be tricky. There are challenges like putting data together, managing multiple tech tools, targeting the right audience, keeping the brand consistent, following privacy rules, adjusting campaigns in real time, deciding on resources and budget, avoiding fake ads, tracking devices correctly, and measuring things accurately. To handle these challenges well, businesses must use resources wisely, keep up with industry changes, and make sure customers have a seamless and interesting experience across different channels. They also need to follow data privacy rules (globally and locally) and reduce the risks of fake ads and tracking mistakes.

AS - Attribution is always the main challenge across any digital advertising campaign. How can an advertiser know that they are having a positive effect across their omnichannel campaign and how can they optimise the campaign whilst in flight to ensure that KPIs are being met and exceeded. 

10. How does data and technology play a role in programmatic omnichannel advertising?

YR - Information is powerful, and data analytics and technology are essential for executing a programmatic omnichannel approach. This is because they enable businesses to collect, analyze, and leverage data from various channels to make informed decisions. Advanced analytics provide insights into customer behavior, preferences, and engagement, enabling personalized messaging and efficient targeting. Technology automates ad placements and real-time optimizations, ensuring the right message reaches the right audience. It also facilitates data integration across channels, maintaining a unified view of customers. In other words, data and technology are the main tools to create a seamless brand experience, optimizing ad campaigns, and maximizing the effectiveness of a programmatic omnichannel strategy.

AS - Data and technology enables the whole omnichannel space to be as efficient as possible. Without data to ensure the correct audience is being targeted the potential pool of inventory would be too high and it would be very inefficient. There are many great Omnichannel DSPs doing great work to ensure data driven advertising thrives in the Omnichannel space.

11. What is the role of personalisation in programmatic omnichannel advertising?

YR - The role of personalization in programmatic omnichannel advertising is to deliver tailored and relevant content to individual users across multiple digital channels. Personalization enhances customer engagement and satisfaction by providing a unified and personalized brand experience, increasing the effectiveness of ad campaigns, and ultimately driving better results and conversions.

12. Does programmatic omnichannel advertising always require an online and offline presence?

YR - Having both online and offline channels is not mandatory for successful programmatic omnichannel advertising. While online channels are typically the primary focus, the term "omnichannel" implies that businesses are able to seamlessly connect with their audience across multiple channels, which could include both digital (online) and physical (offline) formats. The choice of channels depends on the business's target audience and marketing strategy.

13. How do social media and mobile channels fit into programmatic omnichannel advertising?

YR - Social media and mobile channels play huge roles in programmatic omnichannel campaigns. Imagine having a portable billboard reaching an incredible number of potential customers in different places across the world. They are key components for engaging with modern consumers. These channels offer personalized, real-time, and interactive opportunities to reach target audiences, making them crucial for delivering an effective omnichannel strategy that extends across various digital means.

14. How do I get started with implementing a programmatic omnichannel advertising strategy for my business?

YR - To launch a programmatic omnichannel approach, start by defining clear objectives, segmenting your audience, integrating data, and choosing the right technology. Next, create consistent messaging, test and optimize campaigns — and always comply with regulations. Allocate your resources wisely by using advanced attribution models and staying updated with industry trends and technology. These steps ensure a unified, data-driven, and effective omnichannel strategy that engages audiences across various digital means.

15. Can you recommend any tools or resources to help with programmatic omnichannel advertising?

YR - If you want to dive into programmatic omnichannel advertising, there are many helpful resources to explore. Some platforms offer comprehensive tools for programmatic advertising. You can also find insights and learning opportunities in industry publications, online courses on platforms, and through industry organisations like the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB).

Our Latest Posts

IAB Europe
Rond-Point Robert
Schuman 11
1040 Brussels
Sign up for our newsletter
linkedin facebook pinterest youtube rss twitter instagram facebook-blank rss-blank linkedin-blank pinterest youtube twitter instagram