Programmatic Buying, RTB, and Display

I have a love-hate relationship with display ads. The ‘hate’ comes merely from the fact that they exist, and they are all over the websites I frequent, asking me to buy this, or sign up for that. The ‘love’ comes from RTB or Programmatic Buying.

Buying ads from a premium publisher are a fantastic way to get your ads in front of your target audience, on a relevant site, and only spend your entire budget. Even these premium publishers can’t guarantee a good click through rate. RTB solves these problems by spending a bit of money to find your target audience, and then spending a bit more to find the best customers, and then knocking it out of the park spending just a bit more.

When you buy ads through an RTB network, they’ll start off displaying your ads on a wide range of relevant sites at a very low CPM. Shortly after, the optimization kicks in, finds where the most clicks are coming from, and spends more money in those areas. This process continues and cycles until your target audience is found, the best publishers established, and the optimal price point is set. When reviewing the campaign and analyzing the statistics of it, you’ll see a few things.

The first is that your weekly impressions will drop over time. That’s bad, right? Not necessarily. While those impressions are dropping, you’ll see CPM going up, too. Wait, that’s even worse. Sure, but then you notice your clicks and CTR. They’ve skyrocketed. This is because the RTB network has found where your clicks are coming from, and spending more money to make sure you get the highest quality impressions. So, while your total impressions are going down, the quality of them is maximized, and you’ll end up getting more clicks and more conversions for less money overall.

I love display ads.

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