#CRAconf lifts the lid on Programmatic

Moderator Alex Hayes hosted a distinguished group of leaders from all media sectors in a discussion on programmatic at today’s CRA Conference.

The panel included: Mark Hollands Chief Executive of The Newpaper Works, Peter Wiltshire Group Sales & Marketing Director Nine Entertainment, Mike Tyquin CCO Adshel, Simon Ryan CEO of Carat and Cathy O’Connor CEO NOVA Entertainment.

The discussion opened with a big statement: “I want our business to be all digital by 2020. 40% of that ad spend will be in programmatic.”

In 2015 the panel estimated that over $200 million is being spent in programmatic.

In a discussion of what other industries are doing, the Newspaper industry has launched a multibrand exchange, which has been in the early stages for the past year. “Printed newspapers are a complex system, so programmatic can take some if the friction out of the buying process… The lowest value transactions should be automated.”

Programmatic is more efficient. “You can do big scale campaigns in quick time periods,” said Adshell. “Bring the technology front of house and connect it to the market.”

Ch 9 views programmatic as ‘a two speed economy’ at the moment. “A blunt measurement has worked for the industry for the past 50 years, but we now have the tools to reach the person you are looking for more effectively.” Channel 9 is partnered with MSN which gives them a full programmatic suite, but there is still more revenue coming into traditional tv sales rather than through that platform.

Nova has a trial with a private exchange and has other deals in the market place. “Online videos are doing well, there is a demand there and it sits well with our brands,” said Cathy O’Connor.

‘We like to experiment and gain intelligence,” said O’Connor. She revealed that the radio industry is working on the best way to move forward on programmatic. “Should we do things together or separately,” she asked, saying that in her view the industry should act together on this development.

Comparing music streaming services, which do sell programmatically, O’Connor said: “Spotify and Pandora are inherently not like commercial radio. We are in the talent and ideas economy but they are automated… Spotify and Pandors have 6.5 million listeners in Australia but they are not radio.”

“Programmatic doesn’t automatically mean cheap,” delegates heard from Adshell’s panelist. “It’s actually all about the data and getting a more meaningful response for the advertiser.”

“We’ve caught the bus, but we’ve got to figure out where the bus is going. We have to start somewhere,” said Simon Ryan.

Describing programmatic, the panel had this to say:

“It’s not so distant from EBay… We are taking the mundainity out of selling, but not the creativity or excitement…

“We have to move into the value space that will give us more time to focus on the higher value side of the business. We need to be more responsive…

“Has it driven value down? Maybe, but there is more than a cost argument, it is more efficient, there are other areas of value.”

Answering a question from radioinfo, Cathy O’Connor said she thinks staff numbers overall will not necessarily decrease as a result of programmatic buying, but the staff on the bookings side may decrease and be replaced by people doing other functions. “It won’t necessarily reduce headcount, but it will change the skill set of people who we hire, we will need to hire people who can provide client solutions rather than just do buying transactions.”

See our other recent articles on Programmatic


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