Marketers Outsource Programmatic More than Other Tasks

Managing tech and finding talent make bringing it in-house difficult

When it comes to programmatic advertising, many marketers still prefer to delegate their work to someone else.

In a survey of 120 CMOs worldwide by marketing consultancy NewBase, 43% of respondents said they outsource their programmatic efforts. No other marketing function had an outsource rate this high.

Problems with programmatic, such as fraud and nontransparent fees, make bringing automated ad buying in-house an appealing option to marketers.

In an August 2017 survey of brand advertisers worldwide by Infectious Media, 84% of respondents indicated that they wanted more control over their programmatic efforts.

But pulling this off is trickier than flipping a switch and letting the machines figure out the rest. Building and managing technology internally while also finding enough qualified talent to run programmatic ad campaigns is quite difficult. That's why only 1.4% of the advertisers Infectious Media polled had taken steps to bring programmatic buying under their roof.

There are multiple degrees of bringing programmatic in-house. Brands that have done so completely, like Netflix, are exceptions. What’s more common is for brands to handle specific aspects of programmatic internally, like Bayer did when it took control of its data management platform (DMP) and analytics.

While few marketers go all-in on bringing programmatic in-house, some are making progress toward taking control over their automated ad buying. In July 2017, the Association of National Advertisers (ANA) surveyed 149 marketers, and 35% of those polled said they'd expanded their in-house programmatic capabilities—more than double the percentage who said the same in an ANA survey from 2016.

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