By Michael Guzewicz in Addressability, Brands & Agencies, OpenX Innovations|October 10, 2023

Spotlight Series: Matthew Papa at Captify

OpenX’s Michael Guzewicz spoke with Matthew Papa, Captify’s SVP of Business and Corporate Development, about the role search intelligence plays in programmatic and the next evolution of digital advertising. Thanks for joining us, Matthew.

What did you want to be when you grew up? 

I wanted to be on SNL and then eventually a talk show host.

Can you tell us more about the role of search intelligence in programmatic advertising?

Search intelligence provides a unique signal within audiences defined by marketers to reach their most relevant consumer. This allows for less media waste and a better understanding of consumer intent and brand/product sentiment.

How does Captify empower brands to engage with audiences safely and effectively?

Our audiences are available to activate contextually, which means brands can eschew any concerns they have around using identity in the media buys. Brands can incorporate any additional brand safety mechanisms within their DSP without limiting scale.

How does search intelligence promote a healthy open web?

Search advertising is the largest format by investment across the US digital advertising landscape, capturing over 41.4% of total revenue. This largely goes to Google and Microsoft. Captify’s platform ingests billions of direct search queries outside of the search engines, which allows buyers and sellers to tap into signals of intent, activate audiences, and deliver better outcomes for their marketers. The open web needs the same value propositions as the walled gardens to ensure its survival.

What does the industry at large not know about cookieless targeting?

That 70% of the market is cookieless already. So we are already attributing success to a minority majority, which is a very unhealthy way to run an ecosystem.

What should marketers consider when planning for a cookieless future?

The economics of buying and measuring media are going to change. They changed with the introduction of Google Ad Manager. They changed with the introduction of programmatic, which enabled 100% of impressions to be sold. The economics shifted dramatically after the introduction of header bidding in 2013. Knowing something about the target audiences will create a sum of all parts approach to data usage, and leaning in with your platform partners to softly land into this new world, will help you as a marketer succeed.

How does applying data on the supply side drive value for buyers?

Most data post-cookie will originate from or require connective tissue to the supply side of the market. Buyers are actively looking for ways to include audience solutions across inventory they curate. We have already seen this shift happening in 2023, and it has accelerated since the ANA report on MFAs. There is no shortage of appetite for audience-based buying, but the activation points are becoming less scaled and more opaque. Curated solutions that SSPs like OpenX and data companies like Captify can provide to marketers are fueling the next evolution of digital advertising.

How does Captify work with OpenX?

Captify was an early design partner in adding curation functionality into the OpenX platform, which we have used to enable hundreds of our agency clients to activate our search intent audiences across OpenX’s premium inventory. Since 2020, we have evolved our integration with OpenX to now include contextual targeting capabilities within our search intent segments, and the ability to deliver campaigns across display, OLV and CTV. These contextual audiences allow marketers to reach users regardless of identity challenges while still defining the audience.

How do marketers benefit from these types of partnerships?

Marketers have been consolidating partners for several years now and it is not reversing. They have already established they want to work with Captify and OpenX, and by giving them a turnkey solution for buying premium media with search intent signals, with or without identity, we are making their lives much easier.

What data strategies do you think buyers are undervaluing today?

Not having a defined strategy for reaching iPhone consumers. This is the most valuable consumer set on the planet and the dominant OS in most developed economies. Nobody has set out to develop a strategy that includes a multi-point audience-building solution specifically tailored to iPhone users.

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