2022 Trends from MediaMath, IBM, Butler/Till and Audigent

December 13, 2021 — by MediaMath    

A lot that we thought was going to happen in 2021 did not. We expected to say goodbye to the third-party cookie and hello to a return to pre-pandemic normalcy. Some even forecasted this year to mark a repeat of the “Roaring 20s,” where consumers began lavishly spending their COVID cash savings. While we may be a ways off from all of the above, we will see continued acceleration of certain digital trends like CTV adoption and first-party identity next year. Read on to see what trends leaders from MediaMath and other major players in the ecosystem anticipate 2022 will bring to digital advertising.

Joe Zawadzki, Founder and CEO, MediaMath

“Marketing has never been more important than it is right now and we need our most talented CMOs to lead the way…CMOs have a huge amount of license to get beyond the wasteland of digital triage and create a growth engine that they can fully own and seamlessly operate in real-time.”

“Identity is first on everyone’s mind and the growing list of potential solutions is fueling more anxiety than the fatalistic predictions. But 30 months is plenty of time to curate and formulate a comprehensive portfolio of identity approaches that will secure 1:1 outreach and protect the brand from the whims of GAFA. The ecosystem is more than ready for the necessary process of elimination that will take us from a wide-open field of more than 80 contenders down to a tried and tested group of roughly 25 viable identity solutions. My advice to individual brands is simple: Start with a slate of 12 solutions and let transparency and measurement guide you in paring it down to six.”

“The CMO who embraces this disruption will be able to connect themselves to business results, transform from being seen as a spender of money to being relied upon as a driver of outcomes, and fearlessly make the claim that sales will slow down or sputter if they stop what they are doing in any given moment.”

Anudit Vikram, Chief Product Officer, MediaMath

“What we are focused on in this building of the systems that allow you to use the data to use data on both sides of the equation, not just for one side of the equation. So to me, I believe that 2022 will show us even more usage of those kinds of tools of prevalence in the marketplaces within the Internet. And I think in some ways, the breakdown of these purely walled gardens because the buyers and the sellers will find that there are pockets of value present outside of these walled gardens.”

“The cookie might go away, but first-party ID is here to stay. And as long it does, we have solutions that we can allow our brands to actually use to still run marketing and digital advertising as they used to…the work that we had started last year with scaling out these first-party IDs and being able to test how first-party IDs work is stuff that we should actually double down on right now. We have a few extra months to test this out fully, and from a first-party identity perspective, to scale it out fully, and we at MediaMath are working very very closely with our customers to ensure that we do that.”

Tiffany Shih-Shiuan Lee, Head of Publisher Development, MediaMath

“CTV itself is so broad in who has the rights to distribute, carry, sell…I think we just need to find a better way to distinguish who has the rights to carry, who has the rights to sell, who is actually surfacing this information so we won’t be tracking old spy channels with content that’s not relevant for anyone and not safe for a brand or any client to run upon.”

“MediaMath has been very involved in pushing for a transparent ecosystem. We have our SOURCE initiative we launched in 2019 that really focuses on addressability, accountability and alignment across all players in the space and to really expose to our buyers a really safe environment to transact all of their digital purchasing. Fraud is table stakes. We are really lucky to have this partnership with HUMAN where we can identify fraud in all directions.”

“We also have nuances of brand safety and brand suitability. How are we identifying if you’re perhaps an alcohol or gambling brand, are you OK to run across all family channels? Are we understanding the nuances of what’s available? OTT vs CTV — is it device-oriented? Can we be safe across all elements? So I think there is a lot more to explore especially with CTV just because of the complexities of the landscape as well as it is a newer channel and we haven’t had the opportunity to expose all of that.”

Jackie Vanover, VP, Media Platform, MediaMath

“At MediaMath, we have taken an open identity strategy where we’re exploring many different options in terms of ensuring that we have the ability to engage with consumers in ways that they are comfortable with. I don’t think it’s going to be an end-all, be-all solution…because then I think we might end up in the cookie 2.0. And I always think that it’s better to diversify your options rather than pin everything on one idea.”

“I’m super excited about the measurement space. I feel like it’s another place where it’s not a one-size-fits-all answer, and I kind of hope it’s not because I think a multi-layered measurement solution will give you a better answer. I really love the idea of having all of these different inputs and getting a much broader picture on what is happening on the consumption side of advertising.”

Rich Brandolino, Global Media Channels and Adtech Leader, IBM

“We have built up an entire ecosystem around the fact that we know who people are or at least what they’ve been doing recently so we can continue to target them in ways that help maximize their outcomes as well as ours. So we’ve got to solve that problem. No one can solve it on their own. It’s going to be a collection, it’s going to be a consortium, it’s going to be lots of different people working together to generate an outcome that’s going to keep this industry solid. Otherwise, we’re going to end up living in the walled gardens with really no way out.”

Drew Stein, CEO, Audigent

“The countdown to the cookieless future continues for 2022 and the next twelve months will see two major trends dominate – the move toward cookieless identity and dynamic identity platforms, and the move away from open exchange inventory and toward curated marketplaces and curated exchanges where premium data is driving value and performance through the supply path.” 

Scott Ensign, Butler/Till

“All of us in the ecosystem have a tendency to treat the idea of media buying as a zero-sum game, when there is opportunity to make the pie bigger for everyone,” Ensign said. “I’ve seen really encouraging things when we bring publishers and clients together, along with partners on the ad tech side to say, how can we tackle the problems we’re all facing in a way that promotes a collective win?”

He continued: “If brands and agencies working with publishers and sell-side overall to share data that can give us meaningful performance and metrics, we can all work together to get beyond things like CPM, and clicks, moving to something that drives business and creates value.”

David Olesnevich, Head of Product – IBM Watson Advertising

“There’s just going to continue to be a tremendous amount of change that’s going to continue to happen. Google pausing on the cookie, that was just a moment in time. This is not a time for us to sit back and relax. We need to continue to test, we need to continue to see what data signals are available, we need to understand what technologies are available to harness those privacy-forward data’ve got all these different signals now, and how are you using those to personalize while respecting consumer choice?”

“What do we all need to do to evolve our businesses? It’s partnerships. It’s everyone in the supply chain working together to develop our future.”