How New Marketing Institute is Helping Clients Think Programmatically with Bid Masters

August 29, 2018 — by MediaMath    

As investments in programmatic grow, so does the level of involvement across various roles. While programmatic teams have conversations around the space every day, there are non-programmatic teams that act as stakeholders and decision-makers for programmatic campaigns. The dynamics of buying programmatically are significantly different from traditional buying, and it is difficult to make strong connections between those dynamics and one’s own deliverables without experience. Different teams must be on the same page to operate more efficiently and fully leverage the benefits of programmatic.

Japan has finally joined the programmatic wave in recent years, and the potential of and interest in buying media in this way have been massive. Yet, we’ve found that the elements can be quite confusing even for seasoned marketers. Many programmatic campaigns today are still treated like direct insertion-order buys and, by using this approach, advertisers are inadvertently choosing to let go of control over their data and audiences.

How can clients and agencies adopt a programmatic mindset when briefing their programmatic teams if they have zero experience with buying platforms and buying in real-time environments?

This is the challenge that the New Marketing Institute (NMI) was tasked to resolve for clients in Japan.

By closing the knowledge and experience gap across roles, the clients would be able to better design their campaigns for success. With that in mind, we set ourselves the objectives of:

  • Simulating a programmatic team’s experience of running campaigns
  • Developing the client’s understanding of the dynamics of buying in a real-time environment
  • And, most importantly, demonstrating the impact of briefs on the overall success of their campaigns

To meet these objectives, we developed Bid Masters, an interactive workshop that takes inspiration from Monopoly™. Bid Masters simulates buying in a real-time environment. Attendees are grouped into teams and given a budget to bid on properties. Different properties have different values, some more premium than others. Each property has an equivalent rent value. The properties represent a set of impressions that attendees would want to buy. The rent value represents the conversions or ROI against those properties.

“Bid Masters ‘gamified’ the concept of bidding to help our clients plan programmatic campaigns more effectively as a sequel to our Programmatic 101 training,” said June Oh, Director, Platform Solutions, APAC, for MediaMath. “The interactive nature of the workshop naturally drove high participation from the audience (to a point where some clients wanted to stay and continue playing the game instead of going home!), and we had never seen so many light bulbs going off at once when the concepts of programmatic resonated with individuals. The aha-moment also gave some clients confidence to weigh in more on their programmatic campaigns.”

Yosiko Hirosue, Performance Marketing Manager from IBM, attended the workshop and said, “The digital strategists have been enabled and have deep understanding of programmatic. However, the team of marketers working on a campaign all need to have the base understanding of what programmatic is and the mechanics to truly optimize in an agile fashion. The workshop that had the interactive game factor was a fun and effective way of doing so.”

David Rittenhouse, Head of Digital Strategy from Ogilvy, also attended and said, “The MediaMath team organized an engaging learning experience that brought together our diverse team, and level-set us on a set of core principles to help us understand how programmatic marketing works. The trainer from NMI APAC did an excellent job facilitating exercises designed to demonstrate fundamental concepts such as targeting, scheduling, budgeting and KPI-setting.”

If you want to learn more about New Marketing Institute and their offerings, visit