The European real time advertising market is taking shape – barely a week passes without news of another new company, solution, or acquisition.
Many of these new companies are based on pioneering models from the USA which have been tweaked for the European market. Developers are working tirelessly on new solutions that satisfy local requirements on both the buying and sales side.
Publishers and marketers in Germany are in a stronger position than their counterparts in the USA and the UK. German publishers concentrate on keeping control over their premium inventory and are therefore reluctant to take up new sales models. So far, publishers haven’t moved beyond the test modus and only hesitantly make their valuable inventory accessible, whereby most of the already available inventory is not transparent.
On the “buy side” side where we see more traditional planning and buying models. The “quality label” AGOF top 20 inventory – which was implemented by marketers and picked up by advertisers and agencies – cannot yet be fully used in the RTB sector. This premium inventory is often not yet transparently available.
We need specific solutions to bring the buy and sell side a little closer together, and many are already available on the market, at least in part. In the future we will see an increased availability, a better inventory quality, and – consequently – a rise in spending.
One attempt to get a solution is switching from a completely anonymised to a partly anonymised inventory, this way the inventory offered by the sell side would not be a complete “black box” and offer at least some sort of transparency (e.g. by publishing the marketer’s name or the subject area).
The introduction of so-called “private exchange” functions of different SSPs also offers many new possibilities, going beyond the traditional auction principle. This way existing agreements between buy and sell side can be transferred into the world of real time advertising.
Compared to the US, handling data and its availability in Germany and in Europe is still in its infancy. Since the legal situation for data protection has still not been clarified, German market participants are still very careful when it comes to using and providing third-party data. And the big international players, who already offer very differentiated product portfolios in the US have not really got to grips with the European market for themselves yet.
Another big challenge is the availability of know-how and experienced personnel. Despite all of this automation, specialised know-how will always be necessary for media buying and planning – and not only for special formats or special productions. The new technological possibilities improve the workflow especially the distribution efficiency, which can be increased by using more technology, which would benefit everybody. However, its complexity does not diminish. In the future, the typical media planner will be a communication specialist with much stronger analytical abilities, who uses the available technology to obtain the maximum efficiency for both, awareness and performance oriented clients.