Future trends of programmatic advertising

In 2014, 52% of display ad spend was allocated to programmatic in the United States. Three years later, programmatic accounts for 78%. If programmatic isn’t going anywhere, where can we expect it to take us?

Here are 8 trends we’re predicting in the future of programmatic in emerging markets like South Africa and the MENA region.

Trend 1: The growth of programmatic direct

This year, programmatic direct will represent 56% USA of programmatic display spending, while 44% will be bought via open exchanges.

Trend 2: The growth of mobile

51% of 2016 online ad spend in USA was on mobile

Trend 3: The increase in performance buys

64% of budgets are being allocated to Performance

Trend 4: Expect display to mature like search

4x growth in spend vs growth in visits means advertisers are paying more per impression.

Trend 5: The death of site-centric media planning

Brands are becoming less concerned with what site their ad is shown on, and becoming more concerned with who it is shown to.

Trend 6: Independent publisher co-operatives


Trend 7: Transparent programmatic pricing


Trend 8: Strict audits of inventory quality

There is an estimated $16.4bn worth of ad fraud in 2017, which is 20% of the total online ad spend in the U.S.

What do these trends tell us?

  • Google and Facebook are dominating the ad spend breakdown because they have made it so simple.
  • Independent publishers are not giving the demand-side what they are looking for.
  • Programmatic direct deals offer an effective way to leverage independent publishers.
  • Independent publishers need to collaborate if they want to compete.
  • With a powerful duopoly, it is inevitable display prices will increase like Search.
  • Transparent programmatic costing will become the norm.
  • If unmanaged, Ad Tech can sky rocket your programmatic costs.
  • Quality of inventory will be the new core metric.