Results tagged “Business” from IABlog
For the past few years IAB has been encouraging companies to invest in their employees by having them take the Sales, Ad Ops and Data certification exams. We’ve been quite successful—over 7,000 applicants so far. But, not surprisingly, we hear objections from time to time.
There’s one particular pushback that makes no sense to me at all. That’s the statement that certification merely increases the risk of a certified employee looking for a better opportunity somewhere else; in other words, encouraging employees to earn a credential that demonstrates professional capability actually hurts the company.
Or, as leadership specialist Peter Baeklund puts it, when someone says: “What happens if we invest in developing our people and they leave?” the proper response is “What happens if you don’t, and they stay?”
Doesn’t it make sense that people would prefer to work for companies that invest in developing their capabilities and keeping their skill sets relevant through constant learning opportunities? Doesn’t this type of commitment to the employee foster a commitment to the company in return and contribute to a better corporate culture?
There’s no denying that retention is a major problem during the boom times in our industry, but depriving managers of learning and development opportunities isn’t the answer—and it’s definitely not going to help the company either. The only talent issue that’s greater than retention today is leadership; that is, the lack of training programs that target leaders at all levels, but particularly those in the middle.
Nearly half of all Millennials currently have some leadership responsibilities according to a Deloitte study, yet 66% of the companies Deloitte surveyed reported they have weak capabilities when to comes to providing leadership programs for that demographic.
IAB recognizes that not every company can create the type of leadership program that teaches core management skills, foundational understanding of business functions, and basic business and product strategy. And that is why we have created the IAB Digital Leadership Program. This is a new approach to helping managers not only acquire knowledge, but also the skills required to take on the roles and responsibilities that our fast-changing industry requires. This is a program that’s being developed by industry professionals and subject matter experts for industry professionals. The first semester kick off this fall in both a three-day intensive and one night a week classroom format.
I encourage you—as an individual interested in taking responsibility for your own professional growth, or as a team leader who has responsibility for the growth of others—to review the IAB Digital Leadership Program and consider making an extremely worthwhile investment in the development of your staff. If you have any questions just drop us a line at [email protected], we’ll be glad to answer them.
About the Author
Michael Theodore is SVP of Learning and Development, IAB and
General Manager, IAB Education Foundation
He can be reached at [email protected]
On Tuesday, January 28th, the Wall Street Journal posted an article focused on the release of an IAB paper “Privacy and Tracking in a Post-Cookie World.” The story on WSJ.com originally contained three errors related to fundamental aspects of the IAB’s membership, technical ramifications of described technology and the nature of the document discussing current technological alternatives to the cookie. We appreciate the Journal’s willingness to make those fixes resulting in a decidedly more accurate representation of the IAB and the digital advertising industry. However, I would still like to address a few instances of language selection that could be easily misinterpreted by an average reader.
First, I would like to explain what a cookie is and how it works, since the description in the Wall Street Journal wasn’t on the mark.
The IAB’s Wiki calls it “a string of text from a web server to a user’s browser that the browser is expected to send back to the web server in subsequent interactions.” Yes, the cookie is also the means by which tracking and preference management happens today in digital advertising, but “code” is another word for software that implies active functionality. As anyone familiar with web or internet technology knows, a cookie is just a marker like a security badge (the analogy given in our whitepaper) or a supermarket customer loyalty card.
Second, within the article, there is an implication that client-generated state management (device IDs) could consolidate online tracking in the hands of specific vendors.
In fact those vendors would only control the underlying mechanism that creates the IDs and not the nature of the way those IDs are used by the industry. This is equivalent to saying that the phone company has control over your supermarket loyalty program data because in that case the ID is your phone number. In fact, within this particular solution class, we have seen two very privacy-centric implementations by Apple and Google in their respective mobile operating systems.
The third potential misinterpretation comes from the statement that device IDs solve the problem of cross device tracking.
Since client-generated state is created within a specific operating environment (such as a device operating system or a browser) it does not enable cross-device tracking. In fact, no current implementations of client-generated state allow automatic industry-wide cross-browser or cross-device tracking. This can and should only ever be possible at the bequest of the user.
Lastly, the cloud solution class described in the document is meant to be a connector between different state management technologies, not a warehouse of personal data, as asserted in the article.
In fact, the cloud technology envisioned in the whitepaper could become the technology that enables a user to synchronize their advertising preferences across devices and domains.
In fairness to the journalist, I recognize that this is rather technical for a general business audience. But, we at the IAB feel it is important to accurately represent technology and prevent the perpetuation of misunderstanding for the purpose of easy readability.
About the Author
Steve Sullivan is VP of Advertising Technology at the IAB, and on Twitter at @SteveSullivan32.
Demand for programmatic buying in mobile has skyrocketed in 2013. At the IAB, we saw this trend unfolding and launched the Mobile Programmatic Buying Working Group, led by Joe Laszlo as staff manager and Victor Milligan of Nexage as chair, to address this rapid growth and the unique aspects of mobile programmatic. As the working group’s leaders, we co-wrote this post to outline some of the key takeaways from the group’s conversations, and share our thoughts for 2014.
While there are certainly similarities between PC and mobile programmatic, the differences warrant a working group dedicated to mobile. These differences are critical design points for publishers, exchanges, buyers, agencies, and advertisers, and include:
- Mobile’s unique and massive applications and game ecosystem
- Mobile’s data model that is built absent a universal, persistent third-party cookie
- Mobile’s unique targetable data including location (notably lat/long), mobile OS (iOS and Android), carrier, connection type, and device types.
- Mobile’s form factor and the importance of creative that is optimized for smartphones and tablets
The Mobile Programmatic Buying Working Group brings together 40 individuals at a diverse array of IAB member companies with a shared interest in how programmatic is evolving in mobile and how the IAB can help members understand and fully capitalize on programmatic.
The group’s first task was to organize the broad concept called programmatic and focus on those items important—and unique—to mobile.
Given that programmatic has come onto the digital landscape quickly and that programmatic itself describes a family of technologies, we needed to itemize and define the different programmatic markets. Aligned with the IAB Programmatic Publishers Task Force, we identified four types of marketplaces:
- Automated Guaranteed (reserved inventory at a fixed price, just transacted via an exchange, also known as programmatic reserved or guaranteed)
- Unreserved Fixed Rate (unreserved inventory at a fixed price, also known as preferred deals or first right of refusal)
- Invitation-Only Auction (unreserved inventory sold at auction, but to a select number of potential bidders, commonly referred to private marketplace or exchange); and
- Open Auction (unreserved inventory sold at auction, to any bidder, usually using real-time bidding [RTB]).
Although the world of ad exchanges (in both PC and mobile) started with a largely open auction model, other models such as various forms of invitation-only auctions like exclusive or first-look private exchanges have generated a great deal of interest from publishers and buyers alike. A recent analytics report from Nexage describes trending in programmatic and the extraordinary uptake in private exchanges, as publishers and buyers become more comfortable and adept at using private exchanges to accelerate their businesses.
The task force then began to discuss key mobile programmatic issues that will guide our work. Examples include:
- The data model: The lack of cookies in mobile has an impact across most elements of programmatic buying. Because third-party cookies are not typically available, mobile ad inventory relies on proprietary means of targeting, tracking, and accountability, which aren’t always articulated clearly to buyers. Nexage views exchanges in all their various manifestations as serving as a critical integration point between first-party data (e.g., from the publisher/network/inventory owner), brands’ CRM data, and third-party data.
- Targetable data: There are a number of data types that apply in mobile that don’t have PC analogs, including location, operating system, carrier, network connection (wifi, 3G, 4G, etc.), and even handset maker/device model. Some of the parameters, are sometimes considered complicating aspects of mobile fragmentation, but they can be better seen as methods for better targeting in an exchange setting, providing a valuable proxy for consumer demographics (e.g., iPhone users are different from Android users).
- Transparency: Ensuring that programmatic is not a black box but a clear box where transparency aids impression level decisioning is a priority. For example, latitude/longitude (lat/long) is a critical parameter for hyperlocal campaigns, but not all lat/long data are created equal. Some are GPS derived, but others are derived from zip code or post code, called centroid lat/long, which are far less precise. Some exchanges already have business controls to enable buyers to know which is which and target and price accordingly.
Across both PC and mobile, programmatic is shifting from a disruptive force to a valuable (and necessary) solution connecting ad buyers with desired ad opportunities. As we get into 2014, we have several ambitions for our working group:
- Analyze the issues related to mobile programmatic’s unique factors to help members best understand and capitalize on the opportunity.
- Provide input to the IAB’s other programmatic efforts, making sure that mobile’s unique aspects are represented.
- Continue to serve as a forum for exchanging experiences and sharing knowledge.
- Start collecting emerging good or best practices and case studies to illuminate what is working for buyers and sellers alike.
- Organize an industry town hall conversation to help disseminate our learning to marketers and agencies that need it.
It’s been an exciting year for mobile programmatic buying, and next year promises to be even more so. We’re looking forward to kicking the Mobile Programmatic Working Group into high gear, addressing challenges and ensuring continued growth for everyone.
About the Authors
Andrew is the CEO and a co-founder of Studio One and co-chair of the IAB Content Marketing Task Force. Previously, Susman was an executive at Time Warner and Young & Rubicam. In addition, he serves on the boards of the Advertising Educational Foundation, and Business for Diplomatic Action. A native of Missouri, he is also a certified sharpshooter and is a major supporter of the ASPCA.
IAB releases Publisher’s perspectives on programmatic as first part in educational series
Programmatic buying and selling of advertising, real-time bidding, and marketing automation is changing the way we transact digital media. Though numbers are very sketchy, by some accounts over 20% of all digital advertising is sold “programmatically” - and it’s growing rapidly.
Yet programmatic competes with Native advertising for the title of “Buzzword of 2013”. And the hyperbole couldn’t be more extreme. Concerns are rampant. Sales people are worried about becoming obsolete, losing their jobs to machines, and declining yields. Some buyers of digital media are worried that only crappy inventory is available programmatically. Aside from perhaps the ad tech community, there’s a great deal of smiling and nodding going on when people talk about the importance of programmatic, and not a lot of understanding. Ad agencies are worried that automation will mean standardization and less of a role for creativity and creatives. On the other side, many see new technological innovation as the source of great potential value - creating significant efficiencies, new markets, and continuing to drive advertising dollars to digital.
There is significant confusion in the marketplace around the meaning of terms like “programmatic”, “RTB”, “programmatic direct”, “programmatic premium”, and other verbiage, often being used interchangeably. New technologies are emerging which are creating significant value, but there is also a lack of clear technical standards to ensure interoperability across different platforms. Buyers and sellers are concerned with the limited transparency and number of vendors involved in the programmatic transaction. And programmatic raises internal, organizational challenges for brands and agencies, and particularly for publishers with their existing direct sales teams and incentives.
Agencies and their clients have a lot to lose if programmatic isn’t implemented coherently: a set of technologies that aim to create market efficiencies could, instead, create a fragmented, illiquid marketplace if each media agency insists on creating its own proprietary marketplace with its own standards and its own technologies.
In the spirit of creating value for the entire marketplace and driving advertising dollars to digital, the IAB is working to tackle many of these challenges. Today it is releasing Digital Simplified: Programmatic and Automation - The Publishers’ Perspective, the first in a new IAB educational series that offers easy-to-understand documents for the industry. The piece aims to provide clarity, from the publishers’ perspective, on the different “programmatic” transaction types. It outlines the four main ways of buying and selling “programmatically” and provides a clear framework for distinguishing between them. It also highlights other factors commonly associated with each of these types of “programmatic” selling.
This is the first output of a newly created IAB Programmatic Publishers Task Force, chaired by Alanna Gombert, Senior Director Programmatic and Trading at Condé Nast and formerly of Ad Meld and Google. The new Task Force is aimed at providing premium publishers a forum to come together to work on issues related to the programmatic agenda and how it impacts them. Its goal is to help publishers establish market clarity and education around the programmatic ecosystem - both internally and externally. Barely a month after its launch there are now over 30 premium publishers participating in this initiative and the list is growing. In addition to working on clarity around definitions and terminology, the group is also working on issues around transparency across the value chain and sales force organizational issues.
The Programmatic Publishers Task Force is a key part of the overall IAB programmatic agenda. This agenda focuses on firstly identifying and addressing the key business issues in the programmatic landscape, and secondly working on technical standards and implementation of standards to address these issues. On the business side, in addition to its work with publishers, the IAB, in conjunction with The Winterberry Group, is conducting a thought-leadership research study to provide an effective roadmap to “programmatic” capabilities based on surveys and interviews with its members, to be released by the end of 2013. It is also working on mobile specific programmatic issues. On the technical side, it is working on both digital automation implementation and open RTB standards.
For more information on the IAB’s work on programmatic marketing please go to iab.net/programmatic or contact Carl Kalapesi (below).
About the Author
Carl Kalapesi is the Director, Industry Initiatives at the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) focusing on Programmatic, Quality Assurance Guidelines (QAG) and brand safety, performance marketing, networks & exchanges and multicultural. He can be reached on Twitter @carlkalapesi or via email at at [email protected].
Despite my silent goal to never again take a multiple-choice exam post college, I found myself on July 31st at the NetCom testing center on West 33rd, preparing to take the IAB Digital Media Sales Certification exam.
The IAB launched this training program over a year ago to help increase the knowledge of digital sales professionals. As a marketing exec at PulsePoint, a data-driven content technology provider, I considered myself lucky to take the exam alongside our entire salesforce. In an effort to continue to adopt and help drive industry best practices, our SVP of Sales, John Ruvolo, instated the requirement that all sales support teams - sellers, client services, account managers, ad operations, and marketing - successfully complete the training and obtain certification. Now, I must admit - having to carve out time to study on top of the daily grind was a challenge, but as I started digesting the impressive body of study preparation materials created by the IAB, I found myself happy to do so.
I have worked my entire professional life in the digital media space and truly appreciate that the IAB has provided a training program that deepens my understanding of our industries ever-changing processes, rules and regulations, best practices, definitions and of course…all those acronyms. Our space evolves at a dizzying pace to (try to) stay ahead of the mind-blowing technology being created every day. Chrome TV, one-click mobile payments, location sharing apps…it’s enough to make you seriously consider one of those ‘digital detox’ retreats. But without that evolution, without the constant influx of fresh ideas and new ways of connecting consumers to an amazing online experience, it would not be the exciting and fulfilling environment so many of us call home every day.
It has been common practice to learn and grow alongside all of this change through a mix of self-education and information sharing amongst colleagues, partners, and friends. What a relief to have a trusted, accredited program led by our industry body that helps to educate and benchmark our top professionals against rigorous industry standards. We finally have proof that we know what we are talking about…well, most of the time.
This IAB Certification process is something that digital execs across all business channels of our industry should undergo. I am proud that PulsePoint has embraced the program and offered it to employees beyond direct sellers; we are already exploring ways to incorporate this into all new hire training. Activating this program at the sales level of an organization and beyond can also impact future hiring decisions. It enables us to narrow candidate searches to only the best, most qualified applicants and allows us have even more faith that our teams are making the most educated decisions possible.
In order for digital media to continue being one of the most sought-after industries to work within, we must take responsibility to ensure that those dedicating their livelihood to it have the right tools to be as successful as possible. The IAB has taken great strides in creating a framework within which this critical professional development can happen, and I look forward to seeing it continue to grow.
About the Author
As the Head of Brand Initiatives at IAB, Peter Minnium leads a series of initiatives designed to address the under-representation of creative brand advertising online. He can be reached on Twitter @PeterMinnium.