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Navigating Cultural Fine-Tuning in Programmatic Advertising: Bridging the Gap Between DSPs and SSPs

To be successful, programmatic advertising targeting multicultural audiences needs to be fine-tuned. Advice from Augusto Romano, CEO of Digo Hispanic Media, and Hernán Zungri, SVP Sales & Operations, Digo Hispanic Media.

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Programmatic advertising to the Hispanic consumer: Understanding the challenges and opportunities in programmatic advertising for effectively fine-tuning campaigns to resonate with diverse Hispanic audiences is critical to the success of a Hispanic marketing campaign.  That is why Portada caught up with Augusto Romano, CEO of Digo Hispanic Media, and Hernán Zungri, SVP Sales & Operations, Digo Hispanic Media. Romano and Zungri explore the disconnect between demand-side platforms (DSPs) and supply-side platforms (SSPs) and provide strategies for fine-tuning programmatic advertising to align with cultural sensitivities and preferences.

Programmatic Advertising: A Minimum Investment Level… 

Augusto Romano, CEO, Digo
Augusto Romano, CEO, Digo

Some media planners recommend including a minimum investment (as a parameter) for programmatic multicultural (e.g. Hispanic) in their media buying optimization models. Otherwise, the optimizer will not include multicultural-specific properties because of efficiency reasons, as their pricing is too high. Asked whether a minimum investment threshold is a good idea, CEO Romano says that “Yes, implementing a minimum investment is a step in the right direction, but it’s not the only factor to consider for effective campaign scalability. It is not enough.”
At what percentage should a minimum for Hispanic programmatic advertising lie? “Determining the minimum percentage for programmatic investment varies based on campaign objectives, audience reach goals, and desired frequency of impact,” says Romano.  He adds, “It is crucial to recognize that campaigns typically target specific segments within this population, such as Spanish-dominant, biculturals, or English-dominant individuals. Therefore, clarity on the targeted segment, its reach, and campaign frequency are essential considerations in setting the minimum investment percentage.”  Regarding the actual threshold level, Zungri says that “it is a nuanced calculation influenced by product type, geographic location, and brand strategy. Considering Hispanics constitute around 18% of the US population, a recommended range could fall between 7% and 12%.”

“Considering Hispanics constitute around 18% of the US population, a recommended range could fall between 7% and 12%.”

…May Not be Enough: Establishing a Separate Strategy is Needed

Hernan Zungri adds that “targeting Hispanic or other minority audiences requires separate strategies from the general market. Without this distinction, optimization models may prioritize more cost-effective options, neglecting multicultural audiences. We advise creating separate Hispanic strategy deals to ensure optimal reach, ideally through a programmatic guaranteed approach. This ensures targeted delivery and maximizes effectiveness.

Programmatic Advertising: Disconnects between SSPs and DSPs

Hernan ZungriThe lack of efficient communication between demand-side platforms (DSP’s) and supply-side Platforms (SSP’s) for programmatic advertising is another critical issue, particularly for programmatic advertising targeting the Hispanic population: “In our experience, a significant disconnect arises when DSPs use audience segmentation and third-party data that may not align with our audience. This happens because, within a large market, the properties used to create a segment through a data provider may differ from those we established as publishers. This mismatch can hinder the overall effectiveness of a campaign planned through a DSP.”

Digo recommends that “clients establish programmatic deal segmentation directly with us to address this issue. This approach leverages our ability to deliver a particular and high-quality audience, allowing us to manage other layers of segmentation in-house. By doing so, we can maintain the unique characteristics of our media’s audience and achieve the desired campaign delivery. This strategy is crucial for maximizing the campaign’s success.” “Buyers should trust the publisher’s ability to deliver the right audiences based on their proven experience, history, audience reach, and reliable content. Trust should be built around these key characteristics,” Romano asserts.

“Clients establish programmatic deal segmentation directly with us. This approach leverages our ability to deliver a particular and high-quality audience, allowing us to manage other layers of segmentation in-house.”

Another solution to improve communication between DSPs and SSPs is, according to Zungri, “to prioritize trust through transparency and direct communication. Both parties should openly share details about their processes, policies, data usage, inventory quality, and audience segmentation. Regular feedback and discussions about ad placements and performance metrics help improve collaboration and understanding. Additionally, it is essential to work together to ensure ads are placed in brand-safe environments. SSPs should provide inventory verification tools and brand safety filters, while DSPs should communicate their quality standards. Additionally, working together to ensure ads are placed in brand-safe environments is essential. Throughout the entire programmatic process, it is important to consider and properly assess inventory verification tools, apply brand safety filters, and clearly communicate the required quality standards.”

Programmatic Advertising-Fine Tuning Campaigns: Three Things You Need to Know

1. Rely on Publisher First-Party Data

For successful programmatic advertising, Zungri recommends relying on the publisher’s first-party data rather than the advertiser’s third-party data to ensure correct segmentation and campaign delivery. “The publisher’s first-party data is directly tied to its inventory, which is the basis of the advertiser’s purchase. In contrast, the advertiser’s first-party or third-party data may not align with the inventory. Using segments that don’t frequent the publisher’s site can lead to a mismatch between the audience and the medium, resulting in inefficient targeting. When the SSP manages segmentation, it guarantees access to the Hispanic audience with the specific characteristics needed. ”

“When the SSP manages segmentation, it guarantees access to the Hispanic audience with the specific characteristics needed.”

2. Be Aware of Incorrect Advertising Verification Technologies

Romano emphasizes that close collaboration between DSP and SSP teams is essential for successful programmatic advertising campaign execution. “Throughout the campaign, verification tools like IAS or DoubleVerify may inadvertently limit purchasing due to false positives, where content is blocked because of misidentification. For instance, an article with a Roman numeral often used in Spanish content, like XXXVI in the title or URL, could be mistaken for adult content, leading to an unnecessary block, even though the article is about historical content. This is a disconnect often caused by advertising verification technologies.”

3. Achieving Optimal Outcomes Requires A Strong Relationship with the Publisher

Automation platforms perform well when purchasing in open markets that require minimal customization, says Zungri. “However, automation can be less effective for precise programmatic buying. Achieving optimal outcomes requires a strong relationship with the publisher, where both parties understand each other’s needs. This collaboration enables the publisher to sell and the client to buy effectively. While automation platforms prioritize value, they might target audiences they deem safe but may not perfectly match the intended audience due to an emphasis on safety over precise segmentation. Establishing relationships and sharing information with the publisher is essential for achieving the desired level of customization in campaigns.”

“Automation can be less effective for precise programmatic buying.”

 

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