As we near the end of 2022, we asked IAB Europe’s Programmatic Trading committee for their insights into what 2023 has in store for the programmatic industry. Will we be seeing similar developments from 2022? Will there be growth opportunities given the current economic current? And what buzzwords do industry folk think will hit the speaking circuits and industry publications? Take a look below at the insights shared from European leaders across the Programmatic ecosystem.
Nick Welch, Head of Programmatic, EMEA at IAS and Chair of IAB Europe’s Programmatic Trading Committee - As businesses look at their ad budgets with greater scrutiny in the midst of economic uncertainty, so will marketers look to extract the maximum value from their media spend in 2023. A concerning macroeconomic picture can hit budgets hard, so there will be an increased focus on solutions that maximise the balance between efficiency and outcomes whilst respecting the privacy of consumers. According to a Statista study in 2021, 46.6% of consumers ‘strongly disagreed’ with the statement that they consented to cookies. With the advancements in privacy compliant technology including contextual targeting, and an increasing interest in consumer attention, these areas will be more and more appealing for programmatic advertisers. Marketers who can understand and capitalise on the interplay between quality media, contextual and real ROI will navigate economic headwinds and even turn them into tailwinds.
Ben Geach, Consultancy Lead at Google - Through 2022, the industry has heard loud and clear that as consumers manage more & more of their life online, their expectations of privacy have also increased. The time for brands to demonstrate ‘trust’ is now & advertising must go beyond the basics and what’s legally required to exceed people’s expectations around data privacy. Into 2023, I see European brands recognising strong privacy practices build brand loyalty & make a real difference to engaging with their customer base - perhaps with the adoption of the ‘3M’ approach - meaningful (demonstrating what users get in return for sharing data), memorable (remind users what data is shared & when) & manageable (provide simple tools to manage your data).
Wayne Tassie, Group Director, Integrated Solutions, DoubleVerify - In 2023, we will see further diversification of revenue across programmatic. As budgets remain cautious due to economic uncertainty, brands and investment teams may continue to pull back from historic 'Big Tech' investment in favour of precision-based, performance enhancing, sustainable programmatic technologies and algorithms. As a result, there will be a greater focus on innovation across the industry. For instance, attention - offering insights into metrics like exposure and engagement, encompassing audibility, quartile completion, screen touches, screen real estate and more - will increasingly replace viewability. Having this intel will be crucial for brands to optimise ad campaigns moving forward. Attention metrics will make great strides next year as a mid-funnel solution that will fuel the halo effect feeding into lower-funnel programmatic attribution. Privacy regulations and the deprecation of cookies will undoubtedly accelerate the shift towards attention as the industry’s new currency. However, the shift isn’t only reactive but grows out of verification solutions. Advances in verification have improved transparency and measurement, in turn improving the baseline for media quality. Once quality has been established, measuring attention is the next step in understanding how campaigns will perform - helping to not only optimise, but protect media buys.
John Wittesaele, Global CEO at Xaxis - The advertising industry will see multichannel campaigns evolve as advertisers unlock true omnichannel capabilities. Whereas multichannel lets buyers reach consumers across screens, omnichannel strategies fill in the missing links between screens and platforms so that advertisers can purchase inventory, make in-flight optimisations, and measure performance in a unified way. This means advertisers can effectively frequency cap their campaigns across channels to reduce wastage and maximise their ad budgets, while also improving relevance for audiences. Omnichannel capabilities let advertisers fluidly adjust which channels they direct their budget towards in real time, boosting efficiency and supporting a test-and-learn mindset. Advertisers can then invest in the channel mix that best delivers against their objectives, ensuring all components of a campaign work together to exceed the sum of their parts.
Krzysztof Lis, Partnerships & Consultancy Expert, Yieldbird) - We expect further increase of demand for every non-standard ad formats, which exceed the standard, flat display ad formats. This trend is much stronger than in previous years and includes formats like "page takeover", intrusive display creatives and audio ads. In terms of transaction types, we expect that the demand for private auctions is going to decrease, and expect the campaigns to be moved to preferred and programmatic guaranteed deals, but also to the open exchange. In terms of the inventory availability, we see that more and more publishers start selling their impressions on the programmatic market and expect to generate additional revenue this way. However, due to the increased competition for the campaigns, simply being present there would not be enough, and the publishers must offer some unique, incremental value for advertisers, which is not available there.
Amanda Cohrs, Global Head of Programmatic Consultancy, ShowHeroes - With the growing diversity of formats and solutions in Connected TV, Audio, DooH, and InGame, it is expected that composite approaches are needed to meet audience’s cross channel. Together with this omnichannel approach, it’s fundamental that technical standards and clear guidelines must be established and implemented across the board. Reaching audiences in a privacy-safe way has already brought alternative identifier solutions front and center on the adtech side, while contextual solutions are now becoming more attractive and necessary pieces to the cookieless puzzle for buyers and sellers. And last but not least, sustainability is no longer a “nice to have”. Sustainable practices are becoming interwoven in every major component of advertising and how digital media companies are evolving their business.
Ionut Ciobotaru, Chief Product Officer (co-CEO), Verve Group - If 2022 pushed horizons on consolidation and efficiency, then 2023 will be focused more on performance and holistic measurement. We believe that publishers will be looking for more controls and ways to increase the value of their inventory through seller-defined audiences, cohorts and enhanced creative units. We're expecting privacy enabling tech to grow from the toddler stage to a child, with greater focus on what Privacy Sandbox, Interoperable Private Attribution and others have to offer, and that there will be clear winners (and losers) as it relates to efforts such as universal identifiers. Lastly, we see performance and measurement being a big opportunity for CTV to become more widely utilized. Proving its value be hooks for largest digital screen in the household to continue to gain traction.
Piper Heitzler, Head of Growth, EMEA, Amobee - Over the past 3-5 years it was easy to categorise industry players into 4 quadrants, with "Linear" and "Digital" on the X axis and "Demand" and "Supply" on the Y axis. The peak trends of 2022: SVOD --> AVOD, retail media network proliferation, seller-defined audience strategies, etc illustrate how in 2023 we will see ad tech offerings pull closer to the centrepoint of this matrix – giving buyers and sellers a one-stop shop, end-to-end ecosystem for programmatic buying. With that said, we should gear up for a major year of consolidation as large players look to buy rather than build their own end-to-end stacks focused on delivering self-serve tools to advertisers, agencies, publishers and media owners alike.
David Bauckmann, CTO, ImpressionMedia - With the growing share of CTV, DOOH and programmatic audio advertising, more and more emphasis will be placed on controlling and evaluating these channels from one place in a holistic manner. At the same time, we expect more and more pressure to optimize the supply chain and the associated increase in all forms of programmatic deals and SPO optimization practices. Closely related to the supply chain issue is the topic of sustainability, which is sure to be highly debated in 2023. But we expect to see concrete steps in optimization more for economic reasons.
Frederic Lutt, VP Client Success, MediaMath - The year 2023 will mark a shift in a few topics that emerged in previous years: CTV buying will become more mainstream than ever in Europe. Previous years have been about building the ecosystem and the proposition on the publisher side. The entry of Netflix & Disney+, and advances from the FAST services like Samsung TV Plus will accelerate the evolution of buying behaviours from linear to connected TV. Measurement will improve. The two buying models will co-exist in 2023 and CTV will need to prove its advantages to the advertising industry. Another important topic for our industry and for the world is sustainability. All players in the programmatic advertising supply chain will need to do more to collectively achieve net zero. “Collectively” is an important word here as we all need to play our part if we want to be successful as an industry. Attention is another topic, which can be linked to sustainability and will rightly gain traction in 2023. Advertisers and their agencies will continue to focus on identity and prepare for a cookieless future. We will continue to talk about the metaverse, but I feel that it will still be too early by the end of 2023 to have a strong offering to advertise in metaverses. In-gaming advertising will continue to evolve and pave the way for metaverse strategies.
María Ramiro, HUAWEI Ads Head of Business Development Europe - As a Technology Company with innovation as our heart, cutting- edge technologies will contribute to the development of AdTech as to expand into the whole value chain on programmatic advertising. Integrating hardware & software will continue bringing key opportunities for first party data strategies, automation, as well as a more integrated consumer personalized experiences. In an uncertain social & macroeconomic situation, Innovation & Diversification will be key for advertisers and publishers looking for cost- effective solutions.
Austin Scott, Head of Video Marketplace Development. Xandr - Exciting changes have been a staple of this year within the digital video world and I expect to see this continue through 2023. New entrants at local market level are driving the progress and digitalisation of the TV space, while disruption, led by media owners, is contributing to rapid transformations. As consumer expectations and habits constantly evolve, the phrase ‘content is King’ could not be truer; automation and programmatic technology will become invaluable to marketers’ success. The flexibility of digital and the number of platforms through which viewers can access content is increasing, meaning brands must work even harder to reach them. However, the big budgets of studios and the costs of high-quality content creation is competitive. In the current economic climate, creators and viewers alike are looking at ways to cut back on costs. As such, savvy media owners are looking to advertising as a way to generate revenue for new content and lower costs for their audience. We are seeing big players lean into new ad supported subscription models to meet consumer demand as an effective way to make their content more accessible for all. Next year, I anticipate the biggest shift coming through the programmatic buying of Connected TV as broadcasters and media owners lean further into this offering recognising its’ benefits of supporting effective ad targeting and frequency management across premium environments.
Augustin Decré, Managing Director - Southern Europe, Index Exchange - Evolving economic concerns have wide-ranging implications for the future of our industry, but the good news is that there are still bright spots and significant opportunities ahead. One of the largest opportunities still lies in consumer trust, and how we’ll come together as an industry to build mechanisms allowing consumers to be confident while navigating the web. In today’s increasingly digital world, there’s an ongoing movement to give consumers more transparency and control over their personal data. We’ve seen this play out over the last decade, with rapid developments to phase out the third-party cookie. Luckily, tech platforms can move with greater speed than governments and can have a more decisive impact in innovating to solve the root issues in privacy and advertising. 2023 will be the year of action, with media owners and marketers leaning into innovation to help perfect alternative solutions and ensure the ecosystem can continue to monetise and reach new audiences no matter the screen.
Nick Welch, Head of Programmatic, EMEA at IAS and Chair of IAB Europe’s Programmatic Trading Committee - Attention-related
Ben Geach, Consultancy Lead at Google - Privacy By Design
Wayne Tassie, Group Director, Integrated Solutions, DoubleVerify - Technogenesis; relating to the maturity of the programmatic ecosystem and the evolution of its infrastructure to accommodate emerging buying/trading models.
John Wittesaele, Global CEO at Xaxis - Omnichannel, Fluidity, Flexibility
Krzysztof Lis, Partnerships & Consultancy Expert, Yieldbird) - CTV, DOOH, programmatic guaranteed, content to speech, vCPM, vCPV (viewable Cost-Per-View).
Amanda Cohrs, Global Head of Programmatic Consultancy, ShowHeroes - ○ Contextual targeting. Supply path transparency. CTV. Audibility. Netflix. Omnichannel. Sustainability. SaaS. OpenPath
Ionut Ciobotaru, Chief Product Officer (co-CEO), Verve Group - Zero-party cookies. "Sustainabull"--the idea that ad-tech companies are creating sustainable efforts that are either not measurable or merely headlines for press releases. "Ad-tech immersion"--going deep to know the utilization of one's ad-tech experiences.
Piper Heitzler, Head of Growth, EMEA, Amobee - Vertical integration: owning every step of the content creation, distribution and monetisation workflow.
David Bauckmann, CTO, ImpressionMedia - Supply chain / Supply path. Sustainability. CTV. Holistic
Frederic Lutt, VP Client Success, MediaMath - Metaverse. Sustainability & Attention. CTV
María Ramiro, HUAWEI Ads Head of Business Development Europe - On one side, some keywords that we have been hearing, will still be trending: “Quality Traffic & brand safety”, “Identity” (First Party Data, Contextual targeting, and others), “Omnichannel strategies”. On the other side, 5G, AI & Connected Devices development, that will generate new buzzwords such as “cross device advertising”, referring to the possibility to either use the data of the connected devices for a precise targeting strategy, or start delivering ads into new devices such as smartwatches, connected cars, etc. A completely new area that could be subject to pilot cases in the next.
Austin Scott, Head of Video Marketplace Development. Xandr - Carbon conscious media – sustainability is finally earning its place as top of mind, influencing the decision makers like never before. Consumers are looking to brands to make sustainability a part of their daily lives and are consequently spending more on brands that share their values. Since technology is one of the largest contributors to carbon emissions, it is even more critical that marketers evaluate their partners. Tech partners are going to be held accountable and an expectation for us all to be ‘carbon conscious’ will be more and more a part of our daily lives.
Augustin Decré, Managing Director - Southern Europe, Index Exchange - Privacy, CTV, Addressability.
Nick Welch, Head of Programmatic, EMEA at IAS and Chair of IAB Europe’s Programmatic Trading Committee - Efficiencies and Outcomes
Ben Geach, Consultancy Lead at Google - Innovation through change.
Wayne Tassie, Group Director, Integrated Solutions, DoubleVerify - A mixed-bag.
John Wittesaele, Global CEO at Xaxis - You’re on Mute (Still).
Krzysztof Lis, Partnerships & Consultancy Expert, Yieldbird) - Unpredictability (the war in Ukraine caused a huge increase of impressions, but some advertisers wanted to exclude content related to the war, on the other hand, a lot of publishers wanted to cease cooperation with advertisers that support Russia, also some demand providers wanted to cease cooperation with publishers from Russia).
Amanda Cohrs, Global Head of Programmatic Consultancy, ShowHeroes - Gaining momentum.
Ionut Ciobotaru, Chief Product Officer (co-CEO), Verve Group - Privacy (Re) Redefined
Piper Heitzler, Head of Growth, EMEA, Amobee - "In-person". It's been great to get everyone out of their homes and back to the office, industry events and live meetings.
Frederic Lutt, VP Client Success, MediaMath - New Reality.
María Ramiro, HUAWEI Ads Head of Business Development Europe - Saturation & Diversification.
Austin Scott, Head of Video Marketplace Development. Xandr - “What a ride!” 2022 was a great year for programmatic as the kinetic energy that had been building up all through 2020/2021 came into the mainstream. Programmers and broadcasters launched private marketplaces, FAST apps and new digital offerings focused on automation. However, emerging from a pandemic and with current world events having such huge impacts on consumers' lives, from ongoing situations in Ukraine and Iran to the cost of living crisis, we need to adapt our focus to keep pace with what’s important for the end consumer. Amidst financial uncertainty, advertisers will need to consider more than just basic sales figures as measurement for success. For the first year ‘post-pandemic’ we had a lot to do, but really the changes have only just begun and I’m curious to see what innovation and long-standing transformation comes out of this as a result. One thing is certain though, the TV revolution will be televised.
Augustin Decré, Managing Director - Southern Europe, Index Exchange - Innovation - economic uncertainty, will drive new thinking and further developments in our industry