JUST like the ingredients one need to make a great chocolate chip cookie, brands need to see premium private marketplaces (PMP) as an ingredient in their recipe for making a great campaign work.
The term PMP, which has become one of the widely used buzzwords in digital advertising, is a marketplace where high calibre publishers offer their ad inventory to a selected group of advertisers.
Among the benefits that PMP provides includes the transparency for a publisher and advertiser on what kind of inventory they are buying. It also enables advertisers to promptly and effectively buy live on top tier websites and save the costs and time for the need to have a direct sales team.
During his keynote presentation at a recent event of the Malaysian Advertisers Association (MAA), AppNexus director of client advisory Gregory Pichot called PMPs an “important piece of the programmatic landscape.”
As a bridge between direct insertion order-based deals and open marketplace exchanges, PMPs offer the best of both worlds, with access to valuable publisher data and quality inventory that may not be otherwise available, with greater transparency.
Pichot noted that instances of PMPs failing to live up to expectations could occur if the campaigns were not well prepared and goals not aligned.
“The key is to test and learn to know what works well for your brand. And do talk to publishers, as working collaboratively to try new things is an option that doesn’t exist with open marketplaces.” he adds.
Commenting on PMP, CtrlShift director of business development Syahar Khalid tells StarBizWeek that while good content, media channel mix and audience make up the other ingredients in the recipe, a PMP acts as the “sweetener” that brings everything together.
“Those able to afford it would use premium chocolates compared to an off-the-shelf variety as that makes a real difference in taste,” he adds.
CtrlShift is an audience solutions company which has tied up with several leading publishers in Malaysia to launch the region’s first independent private marketplace for digital advertising.
There is also the Malaysia Premium Publishers Marketplace (MPPM) where leading major online publishers like Star Media Group, Media Prima Group, Utusan Melayu group, Media Chinese International Ltd group (MCIL) and The Edge Media group have joined forces to offer premium inventory as well as promote transparency in online ad trading and combat the risk of damaging brands’ reputation in programmatic online advertising.
The main objective of MPPM is the creation of an advertising exchange. The exchange, which is expected to be launched with pilot users by the end of this month, will also enhance brand safety, establish regulations to protect the interests of the advertisers as well as provide better transparency and viewability.
To ensure the transparency and ethical operating standard of MPPM, a third-party company will manage the ad inventories to simplify and ensure the delivery of quality online ad inventory to advertisers.
Meanwhile, MAA president Margaret Auyong at the event told more than 90 attendees that the association strives to promote a culture of shared learning for its members.
“In today’s fractured ecosystem, we cannot wait for time to heal the lack of trust. We hope to shed more light on new solutions like PMPs that can unlock greater transparency and quality for advertisers,” she notes.
According to Magna Global, in 2019, 27.7% of the estimated US$77mil digital display ad spend in Malaysia will be traded programmatically (digitally).
Recipe for success
The role of PMPs as a key ingredient in a brand’s marketing strategy was further illustrated during the panel discussion, chaired by CtrlShift’s Syahar. Nespresso Malaysia digital and e-commerce manager Eve Fong shared that PMPs play a complementary role to the brand’s overall strategy. As e-commerce is a key business driver, the focus is on performance.
“So the middle part of the funnel, where we are looking at driving higher potential audiences to convert, is where PMPs will come in as it offers more audience insights,” she says.
Fong adds that Nespresso is very particular about brand safety and getting involved with premium PMP offering because the publishers were high quality and known.
“Improving quality of the media is a key focus for us globally, and PMPs are an important part of the conversation though we are still in preliminary stages,” she says.
Havas Media Malaysia head of digital performance and investment Premnath Unnikrishnan agrees with the holistic view of channel investment.
“The first move is usually to invest in Facebook and Google but as an agency, we tend to look at campaign brief more holistically to show that every aspect of the KPI is achieved, ‘‘ he explains.
Unnikrishnan notes that there is a need to take a step back to assess the impact of a campaign that goes beyond just two platforms. This is why PMPs are in the picture because marketers should not invest all their money into a single platform.
Nespresso’s Fong shared that as a marketer, it is important that she has insight into programmatic initiatives but not the fine details of individual bids.
“On a strategic level, I want to know which audience I’m talking to, at which stage of the consumer journey and why. How does each interaction meet our KPIs? For that, regular reporting and getting together with your partners on strategy is crucial,” Fong adds.
Meanwhile, Malaysian Digital Association president Serm Teck Choon says that access to the right audience is critical for today’s digital advertisers, who are under pressure to deliver results.
He adds: “For brands like Nespresso, to have the right conversation with their consumers means being in the right place at the right time. To do that, brands need options and premium private marketplaces to unlock the right conditions to spark that conversation, thanks to better targeting and deeper context.”