Publisher or distributor?

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By Martin Brøndum Klode, Enreach Managing Director Nordics

It’s fair to say that publishers in general are struggling to find a solid business model in the digital space. Not only is the subscription-based model (that was and is very profitable in print), not as appealing to the digital customer, who is used to getting content for free, but the competition from big players like Facebook, Google etc is intense. Publishers need to engage with one or several tech vendors just to keep up with these tech giants.

The curse of a revenue stream

Revenue is good and a lot of revenue is very good…..or is it really? Real Time Bidding (RTB) has shown itself capable of delivering small revenue streams to some and significant revenue streams to others. Short term this is great, because an impression not sold (at any price) is an impression lost. But looking at the longer term you are slowly getting hooked on RTB as your revenue “drug”.  When you are “high” all is great but it does have an impact on your longer-term market position.

At the end of the day if you are just another site where advertisers and agencies can target their pool of cookies, then it’s difficult to argue context, credibility etc. If prices go down or you want to grow revenue the only solution is adding formats. It will work for a while and then at some point you will find yourself delivering a very poor user experience for the readers (the main reason you earn money) alongside a lack of performance for the advertisers. The problem is that it will happen slowly and suddenly you will discover that you are fully dependant on these RTB revenues and have no control whatsoever.

Take control of your data

I haven’t met a single publisher that disagrees with the notion that data is the USP of their business. But monetising the USP is not an easy task even though you have extraordinary tools available to you. I do though think that a lot of premium publishers don’t fully appreciate that they are in a unique position when it comes to data. 

We have seen some publishers do extremely well driving niche segments at high CPM levels, but at the same time scale is crucial in order to drive revenues, so a combined strategy is the best way for most. Where to put the effort depends on content quality, your position in the market, strength of your ad sales force etc. No matter what, it all starts with you taking back control.

Join the next wave of programmatic

The term programmatic is often confused with RTB. Without going into a technical discussion around the terminology, programmatic should be easier and more efficient. Indeed if you look at a people to revenue ratio, you will find that RTB as we know it often isn’t as efficient as expected. Validating URLs, yield optimization, fraud (and I could go on) are all major issues publishers need to address. To succeed, publishers need new capabilities and/or additional human resources within their organisations whether that is achieved by new hires, a re-skilling and development of  current employees, or a hard-nosed prioritization of workload.

Then there are not only the fees charged by the tech vendors, but also the ‘hidden fees’ nobody talks about like unofficial mark-ups, kick-backs etc. On top of that there are discrepancies in the number of impressions reported when comparing SSP and DSP figures, tilling issues etc.

Nobody seems to challenge the lack of transparency when is comes to the cost of doing business through RTB and maybe that’s because it seems that aren’t any alternatives…. but there is.

Audiences Guaranteed combines your proprietary and robust 1st party data with easy to use tools for agencies and advertisers. Publishers receive an efficient campaign booking system and are placed firmly back in control of both their data and their revenues. 

So maybe when you go programmatic you should be looking for something that drives efficiency and frees up capacity in traffic management, sales and other core functions, not the opposite. We are already live in the Nordics, and soon other European countries and Latin America will follow. Take back control of your webpages, data and revenues and join the next wave of programmatic.

Be a publisher, not just a distributor of users.

Want to know more?

At Enreach our main objective is to turn publishers’ data into profits. We recently launched Audiences Guaranteed a unique platform for programmatic audience buying – guaranteed and without all the hidden tech fees and discrepancies common in RTB. Our base is your robust data, and we will help you with audience extensions for standard or niche segments. Feel free to contact us for more information, an inspirational chat or just a cup of coffee. We have a lot of experience with adservers, the RTB market, retargeting, and everything related to improving the efficiency of digital display advertising.

For more information please contact

Martin Brøndum Klode
Managing Director Nordics
klode@enreach.me
+45 40 33 38 58