Programmatic Is Failing

Reason #3: Prices Will Always Go Down

Programmatic revenue earned by publishers fluctuates based on fill rates. Publishers will invariably lower their floor prices to increase their fill rates as the end of a quarter nears, in an attempt to get to their quota. Nothing is ever going to reverse this from happening.

Reason #2: Programmatic Numbers Have Question Pox All Over Them

Is the data used to target ad impressions latent, which is a fancy way of saying, did ad impressions for a hotel chain get wasted on people who already booked their rooms? Are impression delivery numbers artificially inflated because of bots? Did ad impressions appear on unsafe sites or in unsafe placements on sites considered safe? Were programmatic impressions served but not seen? Did autoplay dramatically pump up the number of programmatic pre-roll video ads viewed? Did any of these programmatic video pre-roll ads run prior to unsavory content? Were 100% of the clicks reported on programmatic mobile display ads accidental?

The answer to every question above is “yes.”

Reason #1: Even if You Could Show Clients Their Ads, You Wouldn’t

When I bought print media, we sent clients checking copies so they could see their own ads. Our clients consistently asked for additional copies to share with their bosses and other executives at their company.

The biggest reason why programmatic online advertising is failing is that even if you could, you would never show 95 out of 100 programmatic ad placements to the clients who paid for them.

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