Programmatic Media Buying (Part One)

Programmatic Media Buying (Part One)

If you are familiar with the general concept of traditional CPM Media buying then you are already familiar with the methods used by media buyers today, however at the end of 2011 Forrester released a report titled: “The Future of Digital Media Buying” and in their report they introduced a digital media buying method called Programmatic Media buying and eluded that media buyers who did not make the switch could be left behind.

In Forrester’s research they reported that Programmatic Media buying was the future and marketing decisions based on a new set of perimeters would dictate the pace for media buyers. Using traditional cookie related intelligence would soon be irrelevant (we keep hearing this) and using metrics like DSP’s tags on a conversion page to see what kinds of audience segments are hitting that page, the days and times that conversions are high and using that intelligence for analyzing data, would be the new norm. (See source here:

Within the article they also pointed out that using a Programmatic Media buying would offer 4 key benefits to media buyers, otherwise absent through traditional forms of media buying platforms:

  • Price transparency
  • Control
  • Granularity
  • Insight


More Research


In my quest to better understand Programmatic Media buying, I researched other sources (please click here) that could offer me insight into this new form of media buying and this is what I discovered.


Using cookie related data and traditional forms to serve ads would be replaced by demand side software interfaces & complex algorithms to make better buying decisions as a marketing campaign evolves over time. Tracking consumer decisions across multiple touch points like the marketers website, mobile apps, Facebook page & email would now also be considered within the equation when planning and buying media.


George John, CEO of Rocket Fuel describes Programmatic Media Buying as the application of using artificial intelligence and big data to: bid on advertising inventory sources like Yahoo, Youtube and other sources and leveraging various indicators to deliver those ads based on complex factors like: whether the visitor had been on the advertiser’s website in the last 30 days, the weather, geography, time of day, etc. The bidding formula itself and the subsequent optimization decisions have been derived by algorithmic processes, versus being specified by human input. (Please Note I am quoting and paraphrasing)




Bottom line, we are getting smarter about our media buying decisions and using Programmatic Media buying is the new wave for the industry. My only question is: Who will lead the charge and prove that this method is really better than what is currently available to Media Buyers today? I think the verdict is still out and in future articles I am going to attempt to answer this important question….hopefully….:)



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