So, you have decided to buy some mobile media, and join the fast growing market, and pin point targeting of mobile users. Great! But where should you begin? We decided to break down the mobile advertising landscape into categories to help you find the right (or multiple) ones, for your client.
As mobile advertising grew double between 2012 to 2013, and search, classifieds and lead generation media dropping slowly, it is clear that a relevantly good piece of the media spending dollars should be put towards mobile media.
As there are many players in the mobile advertising landscape, they are all categorized into a few categories:
- DSPs (Demand Side Platforms):
Serving mainly media agencies, the DSPs are supplying the needs for ad buyers. And provide technological solutions as dashboards, ad data management
A DSP is a platform that manages bidding on multiple ad exchanges, instead of the end user interacting directly with ad exchanges/publishers, all of these are correlated into the DSP and allows the user to bid and set the budget for his campaign.
By using Data from the ad exchanges, the user can select one or more preferences such as inventory sources targeting /retargeting options and more. Once the bid us one, the ad is served automatically through the publisher or ad exchange.
Funds are being moved from the advertisers to publishers/ad exchanges through the DSP, and managed as contracts.
The DSP is in charge of transferring all payments made by the advertiser to the publisher/ad exchange.
The clients (advertisers/agencies) have contractual obligation only to the DSP, and they do not interact directly with the ad exchanges. There is also a trend of having agencies interacting directly with Ad exchanges, and using the DSPs as technology providers only (and paying both separately), and the DSP will only receive a fee based on the ad serving.
- Mobile Exchanges:
Mobile (ad) exchanges are a marketplace where buyers and sellers bid and sell inventory in real time. Mostly used by app publishers and mobile web publishers, to utilize and sell inventory that is hard to sell through ad networks
- Ad Networks:
These technological solutions assist marketers reach a larger audience across a fragmented display ad eco system.
Ad networks develop a proprietary SDK that is being implemented in various publishers, where the advertiser/media buyer buys inventory based on audience instead of directly at the publisher, which helps buy impressions in a faster and more efficient way, by being exposed to a huge inventory of hundreds and sometimes thousands of publishers.
Ad networks provide a cheaper way to buy inventory as the placements are specifically assigned by the publishers, whereas the premium inventory is being sold directly through the publisher or through ad exchanges. Some claim that Ad networks are soon to disappear from the mobile advertising landscape, due to the shift to programmatic and trading platforms.
- Trading desks:
These tech units are setup at media agencies or at ad servers, and work with several DSPs simultaneously, to maximize their exposure to ad inventory.
- Rich Media and Video:
These platforms are usually a niche player in the eco system, providing creative tools or a toolset to create a specific set of ad formats and offerings.
- Ad Servers:
Large ad servers are beginning to provide a complete solutions in some cases, providing display, video, mobile and trading platform under the same roof.
These ad servers are using proprietary technology to deliver different ad formats, audience targeting logic and a creative toolset to build Effective Ads directly into their platform.
These players are becoming involved deeper and deeper in the mobile advertising landscape, as their holistic vide is being able to provide their clients most (if not all) solutions under the same company.
As we learned, the mobile advertising landscape is cluttered and complex, but also provides solutions to (almost) every type of marketing need by the advertiser and the Digital creative agency.