Taking on Google, AOL builds cross-screen programmatic offer

AOL is all set to launch a global programmatic advertising platform for brands, agencies and publishers. Dubbed as ‘One by AOL’, the platform will leverage the teams and technologies behind Adap.tv, AdLearn Open Platform (AOP) and Marketplace to drive brand insight and action across all screens including TV, formats and inventory types.

The company made the official announcement at an event in San Francisco, where it was also announced that IPG Mediabrands, that has worked closely with AOL in enabling automation in the media buying process and benefitting from a platform driven industry, would be the Charter Partner for One.

“AOL has spent the last four years building platforms to facilitate efficient and effective flow of advertising dollars to digital. We build brands – our own, and those of more than 22,000 publishers in our global network and the thousands of marketers we work with daily to help them accomplish their business goals in today’s fast moving, dynamic market. On the platforms side of our business, as machines automate more media decisions across TV to digital, we are well-positioned to help advertisers, agencies and publishers realise the true value of data-driven advertising,” said Tim Armstrong, Chairman and CEO, AOL.

The industry has developed too many niche offerings and specialised services over the last 25 years. Consequently the complexity in advertising technology ecosystem is at an all-time high. The inefficiencies, ineffectiveness and expense of managing multiple teams, tools and metrics for display, mobile and video, across all devices, are stifling.

“The holy grail of marketing is helping marketers understand how direct response and brand budgets can interact together. With the goal of driving economic efficiencies and media effectiveness, One ensures that data drives media selection and allocation, pricing and creative. It is the integrator of media across every screen and the automator of decisions that have long not needed human attention. I believe a platform like One – that is open and that doesn’t discriminate – will win,” remarked Bob Lord, CEO, AOL Platforms.

For IPG Mediabrands, the move is in line with its commitment to fully automating half of its media investments by 2016. Together, the two companies plan to work to deliver the promise of automation to the industry at-large. The move also builds upon the work that IPG Mediabrands, its strategic investment division, Magna Global have done to use data and technology to create different models for media transactions, operations and investments.

“We share a vision with AOL and the other Magna Consortium members around harnessing the power of data and technology to make smarter, faster decisions that drive client business results. We have stated that we plan to deliver 50 per cent automation to our North American buying process by 2016, with other international markets following closely behind, and we intend to use AOL as a primary platform partner to execute on that commitment. Partnering with AOL allows us to take full advantage of the power of automation to both execute smart investments more quickly, as well unlock custom content and high-touch solutions through newly available resources,” said Matt Seiler, Global CEO of IPG Mediabrands.

The ‘unified’ proposition of One
One will be the first platform that empowers brands with a holistic view of the consumer’s journey through the marketing funnel, and makes that insight actionable, in real-time on the platform. Development on One is underway and customers will be able to start using portions of the platform later this year. The single, unified platform takes media planning and management to a new level, with predictive analytics that provide immediate insights on metrics like reach, frequency, and performance and post-campaign insights that look across all screens and formats to deliver immediate impact on brand metrics. It is completely format, screen and inventory agnostic – from video, display and TV, to tablet, desktop and mobile devices, to reserved and non-reserved inventory across AOL or any other publisher or media source.

The platform leverages capabilities of Adap.tv – a programmatic platform providing buyers and sellers with automated tools to plan, buy, measure and optimise across linear TV and digital video, AOP – a programmatic mobile and display platform, powered by AdLearn that allows advertisers and agencies to manage, optimise and analyse online marketing campaigns from one central platform in real time and Marketplace – a programmatic mobile and display platform that delivers online publishers more demand stability and liquidity and maximises the value of their non-reserved inventory.

One will be sold as an enterprise solution. It will also be used by AOL as its dedicated programmatic platform.

The rebranding to AOL Platforms
“Our mission is to foster an open, global ecosystem that simplifies digital adverting, enabling customers to efficiently leverage the entire technology and data ecosystem. Customers who have a commitment to an external partner for a piece of the ad tech stack will be able to integrate and plug that solution into our platform giving advertisers and publishers alike incredible flexibility with elements like data and attribution to join and manage all of their investments on a single platform in real time,” explained Mr Lord.

AOL continues its push into the global marketing technology business and is renaming its technology division AOL Platforms (formerly the segment known as AOL Networks) to better explain its platform offerings to marketers, agencies and publishers.

One is a product of AOL Platforms. AOL Platforms enables marketers and media brands to reach consumers across desktop, mobile, tablet and TVs with impact through premium experiences, programmatic buying and performance driven campaigns. The entities in AOL Platforms include Advertising.com, Adap.tv, ADTECH, AOL On, AOP, Gravity, One, Pictela and Marketplace.

Via Digital Market Asia Mobile

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Lars M. B. Anthonisen is Regional Business Lead, Southeast Asia Strategic Accounts at Google. Previously, he held various digital marketing positions at media companies across Europe and Asia including Regional Digital Director at MediaCom APAC, Marketing Director at Adform and Digital Manager at Universal McCann Worldwide.

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