By Giselle Abramovich

Programmatic advertising became an industry buzzword back in 2011, but it was no passing fad. Programmatic ad spending reached nearly $15 billion in 2015, and that number is expected to reach $20 billion by the end of this year.

Indeed, marketers are realizing the benefits and efficiencies that automation offers; publishers, too, are reaping the benefits of unwasted inventory. So what’s in store for programmatic in 2016? We posed that question to these industry leaders. Here is what they predict.

Phil Barrett, Senior VP, Purch
Over the past couple of years, we saw publishers begin to delve into header bidding. Even though the new technology allows exchanges to bring in demand before the ad server call, it kills the waterfall approach, where direct buys occur first. In 2016, ad tech companies will invent their own offerings that deliver and create premium, custom advertising opportunities for publishers and brands across the media industry. First thing’s first: These offerings must manage header-bidder partners and ensure they know if the deal is worth their time. Ad tech companies will realize if they control the header-bidding process in-house, they’ll be able to garner better results and keep advertisers content.

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