CEO Apprendi Discusses New Collective Exchange As Ad Network Models Continue To Pivot

collectiveYesterday, online advertising technology and services company Collective announced its new Collective Exchange. According to a press release about the Exchange, the new product “allows agency trading desks to directly access, and bid on, Collective’s premium, brand-safe inventory and extensive audience data.” Read more.

CEO Joe Apprendi discussed the announcement and its implications. Why does it make sense for an ad network to move into exchange strategies?

JA: The exchange model is a good complement to existing, full-service, buying strategies. However many ad networks will find it challenging to successfully move to the exchange model because so many have undifferentiated inventory, data, technology and services.

The truth is, while dynamic pricing is valuable for certain kinds of inventory, addressing the need for identifying and delivering high-value audiences are where we see an opportunity. At the end of the day, no matter how buying practices change, one constant will always remain: the combination of the highest quality audience and the best ad environment is critical for brand advertisers.

Collective will do for the exchange space what we already did for the ad network space five years ago: elevate the entire business by providing premium inventory, audience data and the analytics that matter to brand advertisers.

Can publishers on your network which are part of the exchange choose to opt-out of the exchange?  What controls do they have?

Nothing has changed as far as how we monetize unsold ad impressions on behalf of our brand-name publishers. The Collective Exchange now provides a new dynamic pricing model via RTB for agencies and advertisers that choose to buy this way.  Just as with Collective today, publishers have full transparency into what advertisers are running and flexibility to opt-in/out of campaigns. We see this as a win-win for our publisher partners.

How will you manage between Collective’s own ad network bidding on the inventory, Collective’s AMP client partners bidding on the inventory and agency trading desks bidding on inventory? Does Collective’s ad network take priority in the exchange, for example?

Collective Exchange simply provides access to ad impressions to agencies and advertisers to bid on audiences with greater frequency at a price point that works for them.  Instead of only offering fixed CPM access to our audience data and premium inventory, agencies and advertisers can now can bid dynamically via their own RTB platform.  Collective Exchange complements our current value proposition for brand advertisers so that they can take full advantage of their investment in RTB buying technology.

Is the inventory on the exchange real-time biddable? How much control do publishers and the agency trading desks have?

Ad impressions on the exchange is real-time biddable and pricing floors can be set for any combination of data and inventory. Agencies and advertisers can bid on their own data in combination with our own audience data.  Today, the AMP Audience Cloud has data on 190 million unique users in the US with thousands of audience attributes, from demographic, in-market to purchase behavior segments.  This combined with our proven certified publisher list, content monitoring and ad verification technology makes this ad environment the safest in the business.

Finally, how does Collective work with AppNexus?

AppNexus has established itself as the leader in RTB technology and display advertising.  We are longstanding partners, and we combine their expertise with Collective’s unique capabilities in audience data, ad effectiveness metrics and analytics.  We leverage our combined technologies to make it as efficient as possible for brand advertisers to leverage real-time bidding with the audience and ad environment standards they require.

By John Ebbert

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