Thoughts on US Publisher Forum XXII in New Jersey

Last week the AdMonsters descended on the land of Bon Jovi and Springsteen ready to “embrace their inner jersey” as well as, you know, talk about topics important to ad operations. And believe me – there is a lot to talk about. Let’s get down to business and recap some of the trends, take-aways and themes from the event that stood out.

Publishers have gotten away from their clients

A powerful statement from Jason Kelly’s keynote speech and one that resonates in the wake of buy side solutions filled with acronyms like RTB and DSP. Who is doing the buying and who is doing the selling in this new type of media work flow? It’s not clear anymore. It’s a call to action for publishers to reconnect and work directly with agencies and advertisers.

Give them what they need or they will get it elsewhere

Publishers are concerned about the rise of the buy side solutions, verification and audience targeting. It seems that everyone is taking a slice of the pie – shrinking the revenue publishers are taking home. How should they combat it? The answers seemed to be: by making investments in technology again and creating meaningful partnerships. Content providers need to find ways to incorporate the same (if not better) solutions that clients get from the buy side.

Publishers need to own their data

It’s 10 pm … do you know where your data is? If you are using third party services your data could be anywhere and available to anyone. Several of the presenters – sponsors and members alike – urged publishers to take back control of their data. Some best practices included working with partners to outline exactly how data can and will be used, and investing in tools that provide that control. At the same time, publishers need to also be mindful of their consumers’ privacy and not wait for the government but instead take the lead on privacy issues via self-regulation.

Inventory, inventory, inventory

How do I gather it? How do I slice it? How do I create new products from it? How will I possibly manage it across all of the new devices and platforms? How does Yield fit in? How do I empower the sales to sell it? These questions and more were discussed and the answers were pretty surprising. Again it goes back to investment in technology as well as taking ops to the top of the organization. Publishers need to decide if it makes sense to rely on their current systems, try out the new services or build their own. As Jason Kelly mentioned in his keynote – if you can’t measure it you can’t manage it.

Ad Operations is at the Core of Revenue Generation

It may come as no surprise to anyone actually working in ad operations but more and more companies need to start leveraging their ad ops knowledge and expertise to make money. This goes beyond just scheduling ads and moves into ops being a part of the decision making, overall monetization strategy and ad product development. Several presenters talked about how ad ops isn’t just driving the train anymore – they should be deciding what the destination is and what the train is carrying.

Do you have thoughts you want to share from last week’s publisher forum? Let’s discuss!! You can leave your comments below, in the Operationally Speaking forum, or email me – skirtcheff@admonsters.com if you want to write your very own blog post.