Contextual in Programmatic: a Key Missing Piece?

| Contextual + Programmatic

“Right person, right message, right time” was always what many in digital advertising considered the “Holy Grail”.

With all the advances in placing more control in buyers hands when it comes to programmatic, on top of the current attribution methods, many thought we had finally arrived at a way to not only achieve the ‘Holy Grail’,  but also to measure it effectively.

In the beginning of programmatic, everything was smooth sailing when it came to targeting & attribution of users. In recent months, however, particular changes to browsing behavior on Apple’s Safari have all but removed the “person” piece of the advertising puzzle. Their first release of ITP (Intelligent Tracking Prevention) back in 2017 allowed cookies to be dropped and kept for 24 hours. This still gave attribution vendors time to capture a user and then find them again, at least for a while.

Subsequent releases have continued chipping away at the way AdTech and MarTech companies can track and attribute users to maximize ROI. Mozilla also recently released a similar solution.

What’s the impact? Well, in the US, over 1/2 of mobile users use safari. If you are a marketer, you should be making sure most of your budget isn’t only reaching less than 1/2 of the US population on their phones. Although at a much more tame level, even Chrome plans to limit cookie use in the coming months.

How do we get past it? A contextual data set (most DSP’s have them) along with a specific POSITIVE keyword list (yes you can use keyword lists to target content as well) to get more granular on where you want the ad to serve. These also usually cost less than those audience segments you are using to target Chrome users.

Maybe also ask your supply partners what kind of targeting they can apply to a PMP deal to pre-filter the inventory going to your deal. Many have that kind of capability to help you curate the inventory being sent to you.

Especially in brand marketing, where some would argue that message is more important than the user, this can help you reach the other half of the internet. Maybe it’s time to start thinking about “Right PLACE, right message, right time” as a new mantra when buying for marketing purposes.


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