Sales Lessons from Google on Programmatic Advertising

March 7, 2016

Google has adopted a new programmatic-first approach to selling advertising in order to compete for consumers attention during important micro-moments along the path to purchase.

Now a $15 billion marketplace, programmatic advertising adoption shows no sign of slowing down any time soon. Programmatic spend was at 23 percent in 2013 and is on track to reach 80 percent by 2018. Hence, why major brands like Google are going all in on programmatic trading sooner rather than later.

Google’s push toward a programmatic-first approach to ad sales is part of a larger push to empower advertisers to win more “micro-moments” with consumers in each stage of the buying journey.

Programmatic Advertising & Micro-moments

The real-time feedback that programmatic offers enables advertisers to reach consumers during important “micro-moments” along the path the purchase and across all devices.

These days, people are making a lot more purchase decision using mobile devices, and according to Google’s latest research with Forrester, winning these intent-driven moments is more important than ever before.

Why are these moments so important? Because at a particular time of need, consumers are more loyal to accomplishing a goal than to any particular brand. The winning brand meets the consumer’s intent by appearing within the context of the consumer’s path to purchase. And of course, as every ad sales professionals knows, the more advertisers win with target audiences, the more they spend on advertising.

How Google Plans to Use Programmatic to Win More Business

After rounds of testing the past two years, Google selected an “all in” programmatic advertising strategy for advertising inventory in 2016.

To give a little history, Google initially planned 60 percent of their ad spending on programmatic in 2014, which they increased to 73 percent after seeing initial success.

Google also saw success with their Google Search App campaign in 2015, reaching 30 percent more consumers, 3x as frequently than the previous year.

In testing a programmatic ad buy for Google Play, Google used a mixture of first and third-party consumer data. Overall, the company found the combined data approach yielded a brand lift of 50 percent over a control group made of only third-party data.

Paired with paid search options through real-time bidding (RTB) on Adwords, Google expects programmatic advertising will improve the experience for advertisers and consumers alike. Plus, this new strategy will ideally reduce ad-fraud, saving money on unnecessary ad spends while increasing the return on investment exponentially.

How You Can Use this Strategy to Win More with Digital Advertisers

With all of the recent hullabaloo surrounding ad viewability and ad-blocking, it is important to pay attention to how — and why — Google is looking to serve advertisers with better inventory options.

The most important aspect of this new strategy is the fact that it strives to improve digital advertising for consumers, especially when it comes to mobile.

By enabling advertisers to reach audiences with relevant messages during important micro-moments, Google is setting up a win-win-win situation for all parties involved. Brands win because this programmatic-first strategy increases spend efficiency and ad relevance for target audiences. Audiences win because they get the information they need/want during intent-driven moments. And of course, Google wins by currying favor with consumers and advertisers alike.

So, whether you are a media buying agency or a digital publisher, avoid losing new business to Google by getting ahead of the curve and proactively prospecting to national brands. Better yet, if you can reach out to brands already spending on digital and mobile advertising with different ways that your organization can increase spend efficiency and get their ads in front of the largest, qualified audience along the path to purchase.

Want to find out right now which brands are spending the most on digital display, online search, mobile and video? Simply, set up a free trial of Winmo.


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