Call me old-fashioned, but I’ve always been a programmatic advertising skeptic. However, if anyone’s going to win me over, it’s Andrew Buckman.

Andrew is the EMEA MD of the programmatic ad exchange OpenX. Through technological advances and a bit of old-school manual processes, OpenX has become the most trusted seller of programmatic advertising according to the Pixalate Seller Trust Index (which is amazing because Andrew told me that in 2012, OpenX estimated that 30% of its traffic was low-quality).

It was a really interesting chat, and I can honestly say I have a newfound respect for the industry. Sure, there’s still a lot of work to be done with regards to removing fraud – but companies like OpenX have demonstrated that it’s worth an ad exchange’s time to clear up its inventory because the appetite for quality programmatic is strong.

Watch the video below or skip to the bottom of this post for the audio-only version.

We talked about:
• Pixalate’s Trust Index, and why trust matters in the industry;
• OpenX’s decision to overhaul its exchange and drastically increase the quality of its traffic;
• The different ways advertisers can lose out in programmatic;
• What the 1960s used-car market can teach us about the ad market;
• How to create a perception of value with so much fraud around;
• Header bidding explained;
• And OpenX’s School of Programmatic.

Andrew on…

Ensuring the business was scalable and could go global:

The underpinning factor of that needed to be the level of trust that there was in the exchange, that buyers would be willing to come and buy from wherever they were, because of the halo effect of the quality of our traffic.

How OpenX detects fraudulent traffic:

We have a little piece of code that goes onto the user’s device, and analyses the behaviour of that device in relation to the publisher’s site, to see is that a human being or is not a human being. We then go back through all the data on a regular basis and see if we can spot any underlying patterns which might indicate fraud.

The future of the Internet Of Things:

I think programmatic is really going to be at the heart of that going forward… whether they are sort of flow-meters… geographic location …, or shopping patterns you get from storage units, etc., to be able to actually mix them all together and interpret those signals so that it comes into a global consumer decision is where I think we are going eventually.

How less can be more:

We work a lot with our publishers to say, look, reduce the number of slots that you’ve got on there; reduce the frequency that you show ads to consumers, because they’ll engage more with them, and actually generate more.

People Tell Richard Stuff: Episode 27
Andrew Buckman, MD EMEA, OpenX

Andrew Buckman, MD EMEA, OpenX