How programmatic accelerates digital OOH

By Remi Roques, GM Broadsign APAC.

Across Asia, media owners are replacing traditional static outdoor billboards with dynamic digital displays. Digital increases the yield of a location, simplifies the assets’ management and opens the door to new advertising opportunities. As more and more out-of-home publishers add digital screens to their networks, programmatic trading is starting to take shape. To understand how programmatic accelerates the digital OOH (DOOH) revolution, we need to look at programmatic fundamentals.

Programmatic advertising is the automated buying and selling of advertising inventory, using digital computers that connect brands to publishers in real-time. There are critical stakeholders and components to every programmatic transaction:

First is the brand – any company with a product or service to sell to an audience. As with all advertising, the brand decides on a business goal and triggers the entire transaction process. It is important to note here that a brand can restrict a campaign to specific locations or periods. However, it is always to target an audience, i.e. a group of people that is going to be present at these locations and periods. Programmatic platforms have all chosen to give audiences a central role in the campaign’s selection criteria.

Next up is the agency – a team of marketing and media buying professionals who takes the brand’s business goal and turns it into a strategic campaign. The agency does all the planning and execution of the media buying process, and sometimes also looks after the creative messaging.

The third is the DSP – Demand-Side Platform – a web portal tool for agencies. A DSP is a catalogue of the inventory available from publishers, as well as a booking system. The agency can set the brand’s campaign parameters through the DSP, including a budget, target audience, and inventory type. With a DSP, an agency can buy digital screens on a “self-serve” basis and make changes during the campaign execution.

Following is the SSP – Supply-Side Platform – where inventory details and opportunities to buy are stored and kept up to date. Publishers can use the SSP to set their own campaign rules and parameters. There are many SSPs on the market for publishers to choose from, including Broadsign Reach. Broadsign Reach is an SSP and ad-exchange.

The ad-exchange: the auctioneer that decides when and where an ad plays. The connection between the DSP, SSP and the digital screen is where the real magic of programmatic happens: the technologies talk in real-time to each other through the ad-exchange, determining what ad can run at any given time – all within a matter of milliseconds. The publisher’s players connect to the SSP and ad-exchange, which sends information to the DSP in real-time. The DSP knows exactly the inventory available to buy and its minimum price. A DSP can then bid on the screen, and the ad-exchange decides if the bid is successful or not. If it is successful, the ad-exchange, through the SSP, informs the player to display the ad.

Finally are the publishers – The company that owns and operates the digital screens. A publisher uploads its assets into an SSP, ensuring that the inventory details are correct and configures deals or packages of inventory to be promoted to the DSP.

Today, there are digital screens that you can buy with programmatic and that you can’t purchase by calling a media owner. The difference is the time it takes for a person to close a sale opportunity, versus an automated technology. To execute a campaign across multiple publishers with creatives that can run at certain times of day, or only on particular screens, would take hundreds of scheduling hours – sometimes thousands making it impossible. With programmatic DOOH, it only takes a few seconds. The whole process is accelerated, with increased flexibility for everyone involved.

Check out Broadsign’s resources on programmatic DOOH to find out more.

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