Brands Increasingly Opt For In-House Programmatic as Cookies Demise Looms

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The in-house programmatic ads trend has gone from emerging to dominant one as brands search for options that give them more control over their first-party data.

The takeaways:

  • According to a recent survey conducted by the IAB and Accenture Interactive across the US, European and Latin American markets, 69% of brands have either partially or completely moved programmatic in-house.
  • The primary motivations for bringing it in-house globally were to increase campaign effectiveness (42%) and cost efficiency (41%).
  • Increasing data privacy regulations and the approaching end of cookies are also playing a role in accelerating brands’ efforts to move programmatic in-house.

What the numbers say:

  • The trend toward in-house programmatic ads is led by European brands, with 74% of brands saying they had moved programmatic in-house, compared to 69% of US brands and 64% of brands in Latin America. This is likely due to GDPR first being introduced in the European market.
  • 36% of US brands cited data management and data ownership as the primary objective for bringing programmatic in-house.
  • 21% of brands surveyed reported they brought programmatic completely in-house, while 48% have partially brought it in-house and plan to continue. The smallest group, 15%, had no plans of bringing programmatic ads in-house.

The big picture: Programmatic ad revenues have soared recently after advertisers cut back spending during the spring. Digiday reports that returning advertisers have created a surge in demand on the open exchange, meaning ad spend volumes are close to Q1 levels.

Close look: News and politics publisher Salon finished June and July with revenues up 25% for the year thanks to earnings generated from their programmatic ads.

The roll-up: Companies have a lot to gain from the growing trend towards in-house programmatic as a cookie-less future looms. But some publishers are cautious the momentum will last, given lingering economic uncertainties surrounding the government’s next stimulus package.

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