The second day of Advertising Week NY was all about header bidding (and pizza bagels at the OpenX School of Programmatic Snack Bar in the Times Center!). Pioneers and first adopters of the technology spoke to the value proposition of maximum competition enabling maximum monetization. The panel of experts, including executives from OpenX, Hearst, CafeMedia and MediaMath and moderated by AdExchanger’s Sarah Sluis, engaged in discussions on the issues of speed, transparency, consumer experience and what’s next in header bidding’s application across formats.
Importantly, header bidding has allowed publishers to be more effective and thoughtful about how they let programmatic and direct compete together. Both Hearst and CafeMedia were early adopters of the technology, which has empowered them to gain a much better understanding of the value of their inventory. The data provided by header bidding provides insight into what inventory is highly desired and by which buyers, enabling publishers to conduct a better and deeper analysis of their available inventory and price it accordingly. Insight into bids also enables them to prioritize their inventory better so that they can be confident when letting programmatic compete with direct sales, knowing they’re still going to be able to deliver on their guaranteed campaigns.
Even though the value of header bidding for desktop is clear, challenges still remain for many publishers in the mobile environment. Right now publishers have very little control in mobile, and when utilizing Google’s AMP or Facebook’s Instant Articles, they’re unable to integrate header bidding.
Another challenge discussed heavily in the panel is the value proposition to the buy side. MediaMath’s Tanuj Joshi noted that for them, header bidding means more bid opportunities and selection, and more inventory is always better. But, while access to inventory has reached unparalleled levels, buyers are looking for the value it ads. There’s still no standardized way to determine if a bid comes from a header bidding integration or not, and that does matter to players like MediaMath and others on the buy side. Knowing that information impacts auction mechanics, forecasting, etc., so finding a solution that gives buyers that level of insight will significantly increase value.
Key Takeaway: OpenX’s Qasim Saifee said it best, “With header bidding implementations, more is not always better. Work with partners that add differentiated value and incremental revenue, and you will be successful.”
After the session, attendees had the opportunity to grab an afternoon treat at the OpenX Snack Bar in the Times Center. Bring on the pizza bagels, peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and carrot sticks to get everyone through the rest of the day!
Day 3 is another jam packed day for OpenX as we are hosting the first School of Programmatic session in the US, as well as our client cruise. Stay tuned for our updates tomorrow.