Programmatic advertising is an influential force in today’s marketing world, and more and more marketers are using it to make their ad buying more efficient and precise. Another increasingly impactful factor is social media. Companies can use it to interact with their current customers, find new customers, and increase awareness of their brand. But can these two behemoths of the digital marketing world work together? Indeed, they can, if you have the right tools and strategies in place.
To understand how programmatic advertising and social media can work together, you first need to have a basic understanding of how programmatic advertising works. Programmatic advertising involves using technology to automate much of the process of buying ads and executing ad campaigns. Rather than having to negotiate rates individually with various publishers, advertisers can rely on tools such as demand-side platforms (DSPs) and trading desks to buy ads for them across numerous sites. DSPs are the platforms that automate ad buying for marketers while trading desks manage your programmatic ad buying as a service. Through trading desks, you can gain access to multiple DSPs.
To run a programmatic campaign, an advertiser provides details about their campaigns, such as who their target audience is and how much they’re willing to spend. The DSP then uses machine learning and other advanced technologies to place ads in the places that will generate the ideal impressions.
Learning about the three different types of programmatic advertising can shed more light on how it works:
- Real-time bidding (RTB): Real-time bidding is what most people think of when someone says “programmatic advertising.” In this process, every time a user visits a site, its ad space goes up for auction. Automation technology analyzes each impression to determine whether it will help you meet your marketing goals and then places a bid in the auction. The highest bidder wins the auction and gets the ad space. The process is entirely automated and occurs within nanoseconds.
- Programmatic direct: In the programmatic direct approach, the advertiser works one-on-one with a publisher to agree on terms for running an ad campaign on their site. They then use technology to automate the campaign’s execution.
- Private marketplaces (PMP): Another method is to purchase ad space in a private marketplace. Premium publishers use these PMPs to sell ad space to advertisers they choose to work with, often because they want more control over which ads display on their sites. Once a publisher and advertiser agree on terms, they use automation technology to run the campaign.
Is Social Advertising Part of Programmatic?
When most people think of programmatic ads, they picture display ads, such as banner ads, on websites. While this is one popular and potentially useful form of programmatic ad, you can also purchase various other kinds of ads programmatically, including video, native, search, audio, and of course, social.
In fact, social media now accounts for more than half of programmatic ad spending. eMarketer recently predicted that 56.3% of the $57 billion advertisers spent on programmatic ads in 2019 would go to social media and that, by 2021, that number would increase to 57.6%.
You can use programmatic tools to place ads on social media in much the same way you would use them to buy display ads and other forms of digital advertising. You just need to use a DSP or trading desk that gives you access to ad space on social media platforms.
The Benefits of Programmatic Social Ads
Why are programmatic social ads becoming more popular? Social media is one of the most engaging and effective ways to connect with audiences today, and programmatic ad buying makes it easier than ever to take advantage of the reach of these platforms. A few of the benefits that programmatic social ads provide are:
1. Enhanced Transparency and Control
Programmatic ad buying is automated, but you can always see what’s going on with your campaigns and adjust them as necessary. You can set your parameters and goals for each campaign, and as it runs, you’ll get information about the purchase prices of ads, the platforms your ads are displayed on and the number of interactions each ad receives. You’ll also get access to data about your audience, including information about their browsing and buying habits. You can use this information to tweak your campaigns at any time.
When you use a trading desk like tdX from AUDIENCEX, you get information from across multiple channels all in one place, which can give you a clearer view of your campaigns. We also offer advanced reporting tools that quantify and visualize a wide range of data types. In addition, you can choose between a managed approach and one where you have more direct control over your campaigns.
2. Increased Efficiency
Because programmatic advertising automates the social media ad buying process, it can save you significant amounts of time. Using the programmatic approach enables you to spend more time researching your audience, developing strategies, and creating content and less time searching for the perfect ad space for your content, negotiating rates, and manually buying ad inventory. A trading desk can perform these tasks for you on a large scale, giving you more reach and more accurate targeting with a much smaller time investment. Plus, you get automatic, easy-to-read reporting that makes determining a campaign’s effectiveness and making any necessary adjustments more efficient too.
3. More Precise Targeting and Broader Reach
With programmatic advertising, you can easily target users based on a wide range of characteristics. These attributes include their social media activity as well as their activity across other websites and apps. You can also account for offline data, such as loyalty card subscriptions, as well as demographic information, interests, purchase history with your company, and much more. This approach enables much more precise targeting than simply serving ads to people who like a certain page on Facebook, for example. In addition, you can reach users across multiple social media platforms, and your DSP will make sure you reach the ones that are most likely to help you accomplish your campaign goals.
Where Can I Advertise on Social?
With programmatic advertising, you can place ads across a wide range of social media channels. With tdX, you can access various social platforms, including:
The ideal social media platform for your ad will depend on who your target audience is and what you want to promote. You’ll need to place your ads on the channels your audience is already using and consider which types of content work best on which platforms. For example, LinkedIn is an excellent place for B2B companies and promoting longform content that positions your brand as an industry leader. Twitter can be either professional or casual but is best for quick, bite-sized pieces of content. Instagram and Snapchat, meanwhile, are highly visual and appeal to a younger demographic.
Using Programmatic Advertising and Social in Your Advertising Strategy
If you want to increase the efficiency, accuracy, and reach of your digital marketing strategies, consider incorporating both programmatic advertising and social media advertising into them. Social media is an excellent place to both engage with existing customers and find new ones, and programmatic advertising can automate and optimize your ad buying to maximize the effectiveness of your campaigns.
Working with a trading desk like AUDIENCEX can help you get the most out of your programmatic ad campaigns across social media and various other digital channels. Let us know what your goals are for your campaign, and we’ll help you identify the perfect strategies and platforms for you. We’ll then find the ideal ad space for your content, place your ads, provide in-depth reporting, and help you optimize your campaign, all with the help of our world-class technology. To learn more, get in touch with us today.