New Study Validates SOURCE by MediaMath Approach

May 7, 2020 — by Jeremy Steinberg    

The Incorporated Society of British Advertisers (ISBA) has released the findings of its two-year-long research into the workings and value of the current programmatic supply chain.

Even in the unprecedented times in which we are living, clients across industry verticals acknowledge the importance and need for quality in their supply chain. These days, every CFO is demanding performance metrics and justification for every dollar. There are several callouts and recommendations in ISBA’s report for all players in the industry to strive toward that more transparent, efficient supply chain—and they are things we are already doing through SOURCE by MediaMath.

Industry bodies and participants should agree to standardized T&Cs for data access and sharing, to be implemented in all contracts along the supply chain.

As I shared last week in my blog post on our supply path optimization efforts, we have outlined through SOURCE modernized commercial terms that hold each partner contractually accountable for providing incremental value within the ad tech supply chain. We also hold them accountable to implementing the technical standards buyers require—impression-level fee transparency and alignment on the latest impression-counting mechanisms within OpenRTB—to provide them transparency into price, partners and the purposefulness of ad spend across all ways in which they access media through our platform.

The industry needs to mature urgently to facilitate the data sharing that is a key step towards a more transparent supply chain.

Exclusive data-sharing between MediaMath and our SOURCE SSP partners provides publishers with the necessary brand strategy goals and user-level prediction of consumer action. Brands receive cost transparency as well as the benefit of the utilization of auction results data, including the winning bid

The percentage of advertiser spend that reached publishers (‘‘working media”) averaged 51%.

With brands and publishers sharing data, we can put more of every dollar to work. There is no black box here. In our work with one of our biggest SOURCE clients, 60 percent of the ad dollar made it to the publisher.

Unattributable costs representing around one-third of supply chain costs need investigation and resolution. Concerted action is required by all industry participants – advertisers, agencies, adtech, publishers and possibly regulators – to minimize these costs, in order to drive up the proportion of advertiser spend that reaches publishers.

We are the only DSP, working with 15+ partners and hundreds of publishers, committed to building a 100 percent accountable, addressable and aligned supply chain with complete, granular publisher-level transparency into all fees and costs that inform real-time optimizations or quick supply path optimization modifications. SOURCE offers “clearinghouse control,” an optimized flow of funds and real-time cost transparency. By reducing the complexity of our ecosystem and by rethinking how important tech partners integrate with us, we are driving down the total cost of ownership end-to-end throughout the supply chain. Brands are seeing a more than 15 percent drop in costs related to executing in programmatic compared to other DSPs, and more spend is reaching publishers.

Participants, trade bodies and regulators should work together to better understand the unknown delta, with the aim of uncovering causes and agreeing upon industry-wide actions to reduce them.

We are driving industry principles and support for a more accountable and addressable supply chain. The Supply Chain Co-op is an example of our work here to unite publishers and advertisers around a plan for experimenting with and uncovering insights about the strategies and rules necessary to deliver truly addressable and accountable advertising. The work being put forth with key publisher partners is informing the agendas of industry trade associations and moving these standards forward.

Industry participants should also engage with industry initiatives such as sellers.json and OpenRTB SupplyChain object (both driven by IAB) that seek to limit unauthorized reselling.

Through our supply chain optimization work in 2019, we are already illuminating the true costs of media with SOURCE through features to support industry initiatives like ads.txt, SupplyChain object, and sellers.json. As we continue toward our commitment to build a 100 percent accountable, addressable and aligned supply chain this year, we are focused on strategically optimizing supply paths with an approach that puts the onus on providing flexibility and driving performance for brands.

When programmatic is executed through accountable and addressable pipes, it provides full media-cost transparency, eliminates non-working media and allows you to bid with confidence. We believe that all digital marketing will soon be held to this higher bar.