Programmatic Display Spending to Reach Nearly $33 Billion

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Programmatic advertising appears to be stronger than ever


Ad placement controversies be damned, programmatic advertising appears to be stronger than ever.

In fact, almost four of five US digital display dollars will transact programmatically in 2017, resulting in an estimated $32.56 billion, according to a report by eMarketer.

The report also predicts that, following the forecast period of the report, an 84% increase of that share is expected, proving without a shadow of a doubt that brands and marketers remain invested in automated ad buying.

But, why?

Well, according to Lauren Fisher, programmatic analyst at eMarketer, it is not simply to automate the process, but to gain access to precise, real-time audience data.

"The programmatic technology has evolved to a point, where it's streamlined the entire process for buyers to access inventory, and for sellers to offer audience data much quicker and easier than ever before,” says Fisher. “It's streamlined the entire process for brands, so consumers can access inventory, and sellers can access data much quicker and easier than ever before.”

However, to avoid issues of availability, brand safety, and fraud, brands and marketers have expressed a greater desire to control the process, thereby increasing the number of private set ups. As such, approximately 74.5%, or $24.25 billion, of US digital display ad dollars transacted programmatically occur with private marketplaces and programmatic direct setups, according to the report.

“Private setups give buyers and sellers greater control over their automated buys,” says Fisher. “They may have initially served to bring in reticent buyers and sellers, but now private setups drive much of the change and momentum in the marketplace, as both parties seek greater control from their programmatic efforts.”

As a result, mobile benefited tremendously, with almost eight in 10 US mobile digital display ads purchased programmatically—a portion that eMarketer predicts will rise to 85.2% by 2019.

Video benefited as well, garnering more than half of all US digital video ad dollars traded via automation; a number that eMarketer predicts will grow another 42.3% this year to $9.13 billion.

“The programmatic statistics numbers are definitely significant,” says Fisher, yet they could increase even more year after year, as programmatic is being retrofitted for television.

In fact, eMarketer predicts 1% of television ad spending, or $4 billion, will transact programmatically in 2017. And while that may sound like a small portion, Fisher says that, if successful, it could increase like video and mobile have done over the past several years.


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