IAB whitepaper maps programmatic advertising, while distancing from “programmatic” label

The Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) has released a dense, highly-informed, beautifully descriptive whitepaper about programmatic advertising — which also suggests abandoning the term “programmatic” and replacing it with “automation.” (See a new section of the IAB site. You can download the free whitepaper there, or direct-download the PDF here.)

The whitepaper is titled AN EVOLVING FRAMEWORK FOR ADVERTISING AUTOMATION, and presents a model for conceptualizing how automation works. (In this post, we are using automation as the IAB suggests, but are not ready to abandon programmatic in other articles.) The overview is fairly detailed and unflinching in its portrayal of the complexities built into automated ad buying.

“The term “programmatic” describes the application of data and software to automate digital advertising, and has become shorthand for a diverse and evolving range of platforms, tools, and processes. With automated technologies now the de facto means of executing digital advertising investments, discerning the specific roles and utility of these technologies is critical to ensuring effective functioning of the marketplace.” —An Evolving Framework for Advertising Automation, IAB

Of course the document addresses the entire marketplace of automated buying, the largest portion of which is internet display ads. Stakeholders in the audio fields can use the whitepaper as a condensed guide to the many components that have layered into compaign automation. In that context, this IAB work is timely, as radio has twice made news this week regarding station adoption of the Katz/Jelli Expressway platform for automated buying of radio spots. (See here and here.)

The IAB is fearlesss in listing the key considerations of automated buying: Transparency, Data Quality, Inventory Quality, Brand Safety, Ad Effectiveness, and User Experience. Each of these sections concisely discusses the consideration in a Challenge/Solution style, with outbound links for more context.

Those key considerations make up most of the written content. The whitepaper’s centerpiece is a dazzling infographic representing how the many components, tasks, and goals of automated buying hold together in a buyer/seller market. The infographic is reproduced here with the IAB’s permission.

Produced by the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB); reproduced with permission.

Brad Hill