Bonnier Shares Pub-Side Analytics For Private Marketplace Success

Bonnier PMPThe rise of private marketplaces has transferred power to publishers, who can communicate information about fill rates, win rates and floor prices to buyers.

“What makes programmatic successful is having insights to communicate to the trading desk,” said Sean Holzman, chief digital revenue officer for Bonnier, publisher of Popular Science, Saveur and Field & Stream, among others. “It’s not ‘set it and forget it.’ You need to work with the trading desk and advertisers to optimize the campaign so everything is synced up.”

Sharing information increases transparency, something Holzman expects to see more of as programmatic evolves.
“There are more tech companies between point A and point B, and some create a lot of noise,” Holzman said. “In the beginning of programmatic there wasn’t a lot of transparency and data, and now a lot of that is starting to surface.”
Bonnier has 100 active private marketplace deals running. Integrated teams sell programmatic. Digital specialists embedded in each team have programmatic and data knowledge.

Programmatic looks a lot different now than when Holzman joined Bonnier four years ago, when the practice focused on selling remnant inventory. Many of the ad networks Holzman worked with at the time don’t even exist anymore.
Today, Holzman uses programmatic to grow the overall digital business, including the direct side. Advertisers that long worked with Bonnier directly want campaigns that blend splashy branding sponsorships with data-driven private marketplaces.

Besides sharing details about how an advertiser can extract better performance out of a campaign, Holzman drills into PubMatic’s supply-side platform to better understand programmatic performance. PubMatic recently released richer analytics that Holzman plans to use for this business.

Bonnier’s publications fall into diverse categories, with some commanding higher CPMs than others. Holzman will compare each publication’s performance against sites with similar content and make verticalized evaluations on CPM, share of voice or share of wallet with a particular advertiser.

Understanding the rates commanded by different properties and the audiences they attract is a big focus as Bonnier gets its data in order this year.

It’s brought on Krux as its data-management platform and is creating segments that will allow advertisers to access high-value audiences like “motorcycle intenders,” which will be created in part through its multiple two-wheel properties: Super Streetbike, Motorcyclist and Cycle World among them. It plans to further subdivide the group, offering to advertisers people interested in a particular make or model or motorcycle, along with details about the type of rider – like a weekend rider.

It will sell against these data segments both directly and programmatically. As more advertisers buy using data, Holzman sees programmatically finally delivering on its promise: “Just because someone is buying with your programmatically doesn’t mean they’re dying to buy to get the lowest CPM. It means they’re trying to get the right user and audience.”

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