TubeMogul To Dive Into Display, Among Other 2015 Plans

Brett-Wilson-TubeMogul-2015-2Video demand-side platform TubeMogul plans to offer richer viewability tools, more automation around the TV buying process and – wait for it – the ability to purchase display inventory this year.

In an outline of 2015 company initiatives shared with AdExchanger, included was TubeMogul’s plan launch a programmatic display offering for brands. CEO Brett Wilson emphasized this doesn’t mean the company will shift away from supporting brand advertising to direct-response.

“Our new offering will be geared toward the 20% of display budgets that have brand objectives,” he said, adding the move is necessary because brands use display to complement video and TubeMogul hasn’t yet enabled rich media or static banner ads.

“For advertisers that have long-form video ads, we have a format that allows them to serve a three-minute click-to-play video in a display spot, so for years have been integrated with all the major exchange players and SSPs,” Wilson said. “We’ve already been picking up the volume and decisioning on it, so we figured let’s enable buying of traditional display ads.”

TubeMogul also plans to expand on the reporting features it has offered since January 2014 by releasing a vCPM tool for advertisers to buy based on viewability metrics.

“We already gave advertisers site-level viewability reports, which allowed them to turn on or off certain dimensions of a campaign based on viewability, but now we’re building in more planning and optimization features to automate the buying process,” said Wilson.

Despite the Media Rating Council’s efforts to standardize a common video viewability metric – 50% in-view for two consecutive seconds being the running metric – advertisers, publishers and trade organizations like the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) don’t agree on what constitutes viewability. Some advertisers insist on the lofty goal of 100% viewability, while the IAB said a more attainable short-term goal is 70%.

“You can’t guarantee 100% viewability because people do ignore ads – that’s normal human behavior,” Wilson said. “What you can do is try and ensure marketers get the most viewable impressions at the most cost-effective price.”

TubeMogul will also invest further in TV automation and a cross-screen planning and buying system that encompasses linear TV, video on demand and other formats. Because consumers view on multiple screens, it will include measures for unduplicated audience reach.

Before the turn of the new year, TubeMogul touted a new buying platform called Programmatic TV (PTV), which provided access to broadcast supply-side platforms AudienceXpress, clypd, FreeWheel, placemedia and WideOrbit.

While the system automates data application to inform planning and audience buying, it doesn’t yet automate real-time buying. Planners can reserve PTV inventory through a multistep process, but TubeMogul needs to add additional automation to traffic more inventory and make it accessible to buyers. It’s working with each supply-side partner to do this, and Wilson said WideOrbit is farthest along.

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