OPS Markets III: Live Blog

Check out the highlights from Hearst, LUMA & more

Hello, New York! The Monsters have descended on the Big Apple for what’s sure to be the best OPS Markets yet. We’ve got a bevy of industry-leading talent on deck to discuss what’s next for the ad operations industry, from monetizing social data to reenergizing programmatic. If you can’t make it down to 82Mercer in beautiful Soho, no worries, you can follow all the talks and keep up with all the chatter right here. First up, Hearst Digital Media’s Chief Revenue Officer Kristine Welker tells us how publishers can lead the programmatic revolution. 

OpenX – The Automated, Integrated, Universe — Sam Cox, VP, Publishing and Business Dev., OpenX

9:20 a.m. – Our resident Content Czar welcomes OpenX‘s Sam Cox to the stage. Cox introduces us to ‘the Automated Universe.’ 

9:22 – Cox discusses OpenX’s State of the Industry Study. Takeaways? Programmatic is growing fast; but, publishers want more benefits. Significant levels of premium inventory are already traded through programmatic channels. 

9:27 – “What is premium?” asks Cox. Understanding how traffic flows to your site helps you better evaluate your inventory.

The New Normal: Publishers’ Programmatic Reinvention — Kristine Welker, CRO, Hearst Digital Media

9:29 – Kristine Welker welcomes us to the ‘New Normal’. “Is programmatic really problematic?” she asks. 

9:31 – Automation has affected many industry, Welker says. She uses ATMs as an example: “Can people trust a faceless machine?” But, people want an efficient and save way to retrieve their money — advertisers want qualified audiences in secure environments. ATMs brought about revenue and traffic growth, all with increased flexibility and ease. Will programmatic be the same?

9:32 – How do we cross the big digital divide? We need an ‘always-on,’ real-time approach. We need to find the right bridge to get us from today’s technologies to tomorrow’s technologies, Welker says. 

9:34 – It’s about the person not the page. Publishing is a very human business, Welker says. It’s about people, personalization and potential (the 3 P’s). 

9:37 – Dynamic publishing: basing advertising on data, e.g., interests and locations, in real-time. Focusing on personalization is key, according to Welker. “I don’t just assume you like beauty, I know you like beauty,” Welker says. Personalized targeting is immediately relevent. 

9:40 – The majority of consumers want more personalized, relevant experiences, according to Welker. And, it won’t hurt advertisers either, with increased yields. Technology is the key to connecting content and audience — creating more valuable connections and increasing relevance to consumers. Publishers can fuse together iconic brands with data and insights. 

9:42 – Right message, right place, right time: we can’t rely on the traditional consumer funnel anymore, Welker says. The user journey is much more dynamic today — the path is no longer linear with multiple touch points and points of entry.

9:44 – So, what’s Hearst doing to bridge the gap? Welker discusses Hearst Digital Media’s Audience Exchange. Hearst also recently bought its own DMP. The audience exchange helps Hearst create a central location for online and offline data. 

9:45 – Efficiency: “There shouldn’t be any limit on the potential we have to address more of the demand,” Welker says. 

9:47 – Intelligently: Advertisers want that one-to-one conversation with consumers. Exchange can deliver message to consumers that’s rich for each consumer, utilizing each of Hearst’s brands to help deliver different messages under the same budget – driving relevance, revenue and results.

9:49 – Scale is important, reaaching beyond platforms and media. Through its Audience Exchange, Hearst delivers campaigns that can stretch across all of Hearst’s properties. 

9:52 – It’s about strategy first, then structure, says Welker. What’s Hearst’s strategy? ‘Always on,’ helping to create a broad range of demand and reach for advertisers. Hearst is sticking with its direct team, while augmenting its audience team.

9:54 – There’s a world beyond programmatic, Welker says. Programmatic is simply the platform to deliver more relevant and effective advertising across a large reach. Understanding the consumer interction with brands and advertising still takes a human touch. “It’s humans that come up with the big ideas,” Welker says. 

9:58 – It’s not about responding to more RFPs, it’s how do we look at our resources and better implement them, Welker say.

10:02 – “It’s only problematic if you’re only programmatic,” the perfect statement to end a great morning keynote from Kristine Welker. 

A Fireside Conversation on Private Exchanges

10:17 – Alex Gardner, VP, Product, for Casale Media and Michael Moreau, VP, Digital, at GateHouse join Rob Beeler on stage for our first panel. 

10:20 – For a lot of publishers out there, there’s a need to socialize new platforms internally before truly latching onto them, Gardner says. Sales tends to have this fear of the unknown, and a lack of understanding of how programmatic will affect their business side. Companies should gather everyone around the table for a detailed discussion (maybe even bring vendors into the office). 

10:24 – Publishers should take the time to ingrain the notion of programmatic (etc.) and empower their teams. You can’t send sales teams out without a clear knowledge of how they’ll be compensated, Gardner says. 

10:27 –  Closed exchanges = more control, says GateHouse’s Michael Moreau. GateHouse uses open exchanges below the fold, and its private exchange for above-the-fold and premium inventory. 

10:30 – We’ve gone through a phase one of private exchanges. The first iteration gave us inventory that wasn’t really easily differentiated. In this second phase (today), publishers have realized to get better rates, they have to create higher value, says Gardner.

10:33 – The model of exchanges is predicated on efficiency, and if we move away, we ruin the essence of them, Gardner says.

10:37 – Buyers have started to understand the value of inventory, says Moreau, who recently implemented a private exchange as part of GateHouse. Bidder density is heavily reliant on buyer confidence, however, notes Gardner.

10:45 – What if publishers had the ability to create a variety of different signals based on one impression, depending on what (and who) advertisers want to reach, Gardner says. 

isocket – Bringing More Tech to Direct Sales With Programmatic Guaranteed — Ben Trenda, CRO, isocket

12:18 – isocket’s Ben Trenda takes the stage to discusing programmatic guaranteed. 

12:24 – Trenda breaks down different programmatic versus manual, buyer versus seller decisions. RTB has not been very good at actually valuating inventory, Trenda says. Most inventory in RTB today has been remnant inventory. 

12:30 – When you have a lot of buyers you can see what buyers are doing organically, says Trenda.

12:32 – The best advertisers, big and small, care most about where they’re add is being served, Trenda notes. He refers to isocket’s inventory quality check as ‘maniacal’. Premium matters. 

Evidon – One Tag Leads to Another — Amy King, VP, Product Marketing, Evidon

12:39 – Your data is valuable, we know that — but how vauable? You need a data strategy, says Evidon’s Amy King. 

12:41 – King introduces Evidon’s Ghostery browser extension, which has helped to build the largest script library on the web today. 

12:44 – First step to data fidelity is know who’s on your site, how they got there and being clear on what data is collected, and what isn’t, King says. 

12:46 – When it comes to audience data there’s a difference between a collector and a hoarder. Get rid of unused tags on your webpage, says King.

AdTruth – Mobilizing the Ecosystem: Solving the Audience Recognition Crisis — James Lamberti, GM, AdTruth

2:00 – We live in a fragment world when it comes to cookies, says AdTruth’s James Lamberti. Universality is breaking down — there are more and more devices come out. 

2:02 – AdTruth delivers “privacy by design” from the ground up, Lamberti explains. The other two pillars of the platform: dynamic and server-side (it’s in your stack, in your environment — the data is yours.)

2:03 – It’s about striking the right balance, Lamberti says. We have to preserve the virtues of what we do through new technological means. 

Between the Lines of the LUMAscapes

2:08 – The LUMAscape has been view three-quarters of a billion times, according to LUMA Partner’s Amanda Bicofsky

2:09 – Bicofsky introduces the room to the Strategic Buyer LUMAscape. There’s one thing these companies don’t have in common, they have no clue about ad operations, says Bicofsky. 

2:15 – In 2010, there were 204 independent companies, 53 of which were acquired. “LUMAscape whack-a-mole,” Bicofsky said. So fair this year, one company a month has closed it doors — but, it’s needed, according to Bicofsky, to help fuel the company consolidation important to the success of the ad ops industry.

2:20 – It’s about relevancy, engagement and facilitation, that’s how you get to $4.4 trillion in spend. Relevancy means that the consumer is in the right mindset to receive your advertisement. But, it’s also about what’s under the hood — optimization. 

2:26 – Bicofsky takes us through the history of ad sales from premium, direct buys and ad networks to programmatic and native/social advertising. Programmatic and native are the future, but they are very different futures — facilitative retargeting with good creative. 

2:30 – The consumer is in control today more than ever. “Our LUMAscapes are always wrong…the landscape is dynamic and we only have one 8×11 sheet of paper,” Bicofsky said. 

Video in Real-Time

2:40 – U.S. Editor Gavin Dunaway introduces the session’s panelists: Christina Beaumier, Xaxis; Alanna Gombert, Condé Nast; Erwin Castellanos, LiveRail; and Jason Lopatecki, TubeMogul. 

2:44 – Why do brand seem so programmatic crazy? Programmatic is becoming mature and brands are expecting the same efficiencies with video, says Beaumier. Video isn’t confined to a platform — TV on television is basically the same as TV online, and advertisers can approach them in similar manners, according to Beaumier. 

2:52 – Alignment between TV and video: “This has been the year of the GRP,” says Lopatecki. It’s helped bridge gap between tv and digital video. “For the first time we can finally speak the same language,” says Gombert.

2:54 – The buy side is the real driver of programmatic digital video, according to Castellanos. The winning goal is to embrace both programmatic premium and remnant for video, Castellanos says. 

2:56 – Optimizing audience data on the supply side is difficult, says Castellanos. 

2:59 – We have to figure out why we’re using OCR; right now, we should really be focusing on listening and learning who audiences are, Beaumier said. 

3:00 – “Evolution from display to video: video has hit a cadence much quicker than display,” Gombert says. It’s easier to employ, it’s easier to understand, according to Gombert. 

3:04 – What is the real definition of premium video? “We saw the definition change from content to behavior,” Castellanos said. Clickable video, above the fold is the holy grail right now. Also, professionally produced video is very comfortable for brands, notes Beaumier. 

3:07 – How importance is audience? And, how important is transparency of content? asks Beamier. 

3:12 – Is the GRP here to stay? asks Dunaway. A resounding ‘absolutely’ from the panelists on stage. 

Climbing Out of the Privacy Hole — Jules Polonetsky, Director and Co-Chair, Future of Privacy Forum

4:50 – Future of Privacy Forum’s Director and Co-Chair Jules Polonetsky takes the stage: “Are we going to recognize that it may be time to stop fighting the small fights?” asks Polonetsky regarding Mozillia’s stance on cookies. 

4:52 – “Do we actually have a problem?” We certainly do, Polonetsky says. But, just because people care doesn’t mean people will do something. But, it’s enough that eople will read news about it, and legislators will make noise about it. 

4:56 – People care about privacy; they’ll listen. But, we don’t learn form our mistakes, Polonetsky says. Privacy issues in the digital age have been an ongoing debate since the early 2000s. 

5:05 – We’ve got to step up as an industry, Polonetsky says — and we have! He uses AdChoice as an example. 

5:09 – Browser saw that pop blockers were popular and installed them — and the technology had a huge part in changing the ad dynamic. Could the same happen for pixels and cookies? 

5:11 – Is data seen as negative? Polonetsky call is the new oil. 

5:14 – Higher-end vacations for Mac users? Orbitz thinks so. But, is such a tactic an invasion of privacy? 

5:20 – It’s not all about relevance — “Nobody’s collaborating with a publisher asking, what does this user really, really want?”