Thought Leadership

Guaranteeing audiences one PMP at a time

November 20, 2017
By Miranda Dennis

You know those infomercials you grew up watching? The grainy footage, dim lights, and staff-turned-actors peddling services and products that they 100% guarantee you’ll enjoy… or your money back? After a lifetime of conditioning from bad jingles and corny commercials, any sales pitch involving a guarantee makes me feel uneasy. With so many variables in the world, how can we guarantee much of anything?

Yet Rubicon Project offers Guaranteed PMPs (gPMPs) confidently, and with good reason. Our gPMP offering affords DSPs the opportunity to access inventory guaranteed by a publisher, which takes the stress out of planning for premium inventory. The premise is simple enough: DSPs ingest a flag in the bidstream that indicates a level of guaranteed commitment on a deal. These deals are created with the understanding that both buyer and publisher will prioritize the deal, the DSP’s bidder will respond appropriately (i.e., often), and the publisher will supply that guaranteed inventory, all handled smoothly across RTB pipes.

As programmatic continues to evolve, there are huge opportunities for buyers to get the most out of gPMPs. However, in order for a DSP to implement gPMP in a timely fashion and lock in that beloved inventory (like, say, video) by whichever upcoming holiday they need it most (like, say, Christmas), some elbow grease is required. So, what are a DSP’s options for accessing gPMPs? Either the DSP team manages its campaigns manually to achieve guaranteed spend, or they productize to guaranteed spec; both routes are acceptable, so long as it’s done well and the buyer is happy.

Start with clever campaign management

If you haven’t done the dev work to read and respond to the gPMP flag, you’re not alone. Most DSPs are still exploring the world of guaranteed buys, and it all starts with proper campaign management. After all, you know your bidder best, and a publisher knows their inventory best. Fortunately, we have an Orders platform that can help start these conversations and bring everyone to the bidding table. To execute a gPMP via campaign management, we help you setup an ad hoc workflow to ensure your commitment and keep publishers abreast of what you’re willing to spend. We also have dedicated account teams on hand to coordinate, manage, and monitor so you can get back to doing what you do best. The extra layer of campaign support may be enough to get you started, but if not, you may want to consider productizing with gPMP and adding it to your arsenal.

Evolve to productize and standardize

As an exchange dedicated to offering innovative products that buyers want, we are always working with DSPs to develop new tools that improve their campaign performance. However, we recognize how hard it is to squeeze anything new into a product roadmap down the line. We get it, no one wants to ask their hard-working product team, “Hey, can we get this done in Q4 and still make time to go home for the holidays?” I can already feel the chill of an impending code freeze.

And yet, I urge you to make those requests anyway, and for one simple reason: a DSP that is able to respond to the bid stream, and secure guaranteed inventory, positions itself as having a very smart bidder. Savvy bidders and innovation are key differentiators for any good business in the digital landscape. Imagine the value prop in having both the smartest bidder in the game and being able to promise your client guaranteed commitment during the busiest times of year? And hey! No sweat if you haven’t been able to do the dev work yet or try your hand at managing a guaranteed campaign. Make it a part of your 2018 New Year’s resolution.

My guarantee to you

As an exchange, our goal is to help you help yourself. No matter how nimble your hands-on-keyboard team is at workarounds and hacks, this time let’s do it right and align towards innovation. Together, we all become active participants in a larger dialogue: how can every buyer and every seller create PMPs that not only target a specific audience but guarantees it, at scale. After all, guaranteed audiences is what everyone is after, and guaranteed private marketplaces are just one more step in the game.


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