It’s All About Transparency

A recent headline caught our attention:

Ad Age: P&G Tells Digital to Clean Up, Lays Down New Rules for Agencies and Ad Tech to Get Paid

We agree that digital needs to step up in this game. Over the last few years, The Richards Group’s media team has put many best practices in place. We have been part of the viewability conversation since its advent and have worked with our viewability, fraud, and safety partner Integral Ad Science for many years (a service for which we do not charge our clients).

As an agency, we place a great amount of importance on time spent with the brand, which focuses on viewability. Here is where digital media takes an unfair shot. Nielsen TV ratings simply represent an opportunity to see an ad. With seven-minute ad pods, you can be guaranteed that part of your audience just went to the kitchen. With the proliferation of smartphones, you can be guaranteed that another percentage are looking at their phone and not the TV screen. In magazines, you have no guarantee that the reader will stop on the page where your ad appears. Lack of viewability is not unique to ads in the digital space.

Soon, viewability will need to be balanced with new time-spent norms that have not yet been defined. We are participating in betas with vendors that let us buy inventory based on viewability and now time spent. We also focus on channels and partners that create unskippable opportunities.

Transparency has always been a priority for our agency, and this philosophy translates to complete transparency for all programmatic inventory. As programmatic billings grow, it is important that we know exactly what we’re paying for – what makes up that CPM we are negotiating. We require that all tech fees, management fees, inventory fees, and serving fees be completely transparent. This is where most advertisers can get gouged if they do not understand these differences.

We’ve all heard the phrase, “The squeaky wheel gets the grease.” As media professionals in an increasingly complex media landscape, it’s important to remain squeaky and insist that our clients’ dollars are being used to their fullest potential.

Categories: 1000 ft. POV, Advertising

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