Many advertisers have lost confidence in the transparency and honesty of the programmatic ecosystem, according to new research published today by London Research in partnership with TRUTH.
The State of Programmatic Advertising report has found that many brands question the proportion of their ad spend that translates into media seen by the consumer. These concerns are exacerbated by well-documented instances of ad fraud, and damage to brands caused by association with inappropriate content.
The study is based on interviews with senior marketers at well-known brands, and a global survey of 102 senior executives with responsibility for ad buying at large companies with annual revenues of at least $50 million a year.
Almost eight in ten advertisers indicated they have worries over levels of transparency in programmatic advertising (79%), while only a small minority (14%) strongly agreed they have a good understanding of the proportion of their budget that makes it to the consumer.
Thirty-nine per cent of advertisers surveyed said they regarded lack of visibility on third parties as one of their biggest industry concerns.
The survey, which was conducted in November 2017, was completed by members of Digital Doughnut’s 1.5 million-strong community of marketers and digital professionals. London Research is a sister company to Digital Doughnut, part of Communitize Ltd.
Programmatic is a term that describes a range of platforms, tools and services that have made digital advertising more automated and data-driven.
According to the report: “While advertisers and agencies have reaped the benefits of a more targeted and scientific approach to display advertising activities, ad tech companies have proliferated, with question marks raised about the value being added by agencies and third parties at different stages of an increasingly complicated and sometimes murky process.”
TRUTH, which was launched in November 2017, utilises blockchain smart contract technology to provide 100% transparency in the media supply chain. Commenting on the findings, Mary Keane Dawson, the company’s CEO, said: “These findings make it more and more apparent the current media model is broken. The industry cannot continue in this way where there is a fundamental lack of trust in the process. As an industry we need to acknowledge these concerns and move towards a model where there is total transparency.”
Other key findings from the research include: