Programmatic digital-out-of-home (pDOOH)
Programmatic digital-out-of-home (pDOOH)
Programmatic digital-out-of-home (pDOOH) advertising refers to the automated buying, selling, and delivery of digital out-of-home (DOOH) ad inventory. It combines the benefits of DOOH advertising with programmatic transactions that enable precise and real-time targeting.

What is pDOOH advertising? 

pDOOH advertising is a refined approach to DOOH that uses technology platforms to automate the buying and selling of DOOH ads. Similar to how online ad inventory is managed, demand-side platforms (DSPs) manage the buyer side and supply-side platforms (SSPs) manage the seller side to operate the buying process. Buyers can set parameters on what type of media to buy from the DSP, which then goes through its ad inventory to find ads that align with the defined parameters. Once a suitable ad is determined, the ad is immediately purchased and displayed on the respective DOOH screen.

How does pDOOH work?  

The primary use of pDOOH advertising is to enable sharp and precise targeting in delivering ads. By nature, DOOH ads reach crowds of audiences that may or may not be in the desired target segment. Hence, it used to be extremely difficult to categorize viewers of these ads before and track offline ad engagement with accuracy. Now, pDOOH ads have tracking capabilities that are able to detect key conditions like location, device ID, weather, and specific days and times, which are used to better tailor ads to target audiences and perform precise measurements. Below are several capabilities of pDOOH: 

Behavioral targeting 

One of the most essential features of pDOOH ads is their ability to track the location data of certain mobile devices using GPS technology. In turn, marketers are able to monitor the movement patterns of certain individuals they wish to target to identify their interests, preferences, and frequency of location visits throughout the day. Using these pointers, they can build a custom audience persona and determine DOOH screen locations where the target audience is most likely to be present. In doing so, marketers only have to serve ads where they need to, while accurately targeting the desired audience group. 

Geofencing points of interest (POI) locations

pDOOH location data can be leveraged to determine POIs and geofence certain areas for targeted ad delivery. With location tracking, marketers are able to identify the POIs of their target audience, such as the area they cluster the most or frequently visit. They can then geofence these POIs and program nearby DOOH screens to display relevant ads whenever a target audience is detected in close proximity to the POI. 

Device ID passback 

pDOOH advertising is capable of collecting the device IDs of those who viewed certain DOOH ads. Device ID data is useful for retargeting and sending follow-up ads to mobile devices to sustain communication and re-engage with individuals who expressed interest in the ad. 

Dynamic creatives 

Dynamic creatives are DOOH ads that collect real-time data to swap out certain elements within the ad with updated information. These real-time updates make dynamic creatives more interactive and tailored to the situation at the moment. For example, if a display ad is live reporting a football game, the dynamic creative is programmed to constantly keep track of the game status and swap out any scores or commentaries as they occur. Other elements like the display of live weather reports or clocks are also dynamic creatives.

Weather/time-based triggers

Similar to dynamic creatives, weather and time-based triggers keep track of weather and time data to trigger certain ads at predefined points. For instance, a brand that sells rainboots could program its ad to be displayed only when it is raining. As such, some ads are more fitting in certain circumstances, and pDOOH’s ability to monitor these changes and serve the most contextually relevant ads helps marketers maximize efficiency in segmentation and targeting. 

Types of pDOOH purchasing process 

There are three main approaches to buying ads with pDOOH advertising. 

Open real-time bidding (RTB) 

Open real-time bidding is the most commonly used format of transaction among buyers and sellers. When a pDOOH system opens up an ad slot, buyers can immediately place bids on the slot and determine the price they are willing to pay based on how much it is worth to them. After bids close, the system automatically sells to the highest bid and displays the respective ad on the DOOH screen. This entire process happens within seconds and constantly operates every time an ad slot opens up for auction. While buyers are competing in a fair process, the downside is that the competition may be tough depending on the demand. 

Private deal real-time bidding 

This type of bidding is more selective and offers a privilege to buyers with connections. Media owners sometimes open up ad slots that are exclusively provided to premium buyers and buyers with longstanding relationships. They are essentially selling to “VIP buyers” and offering priority access to place bids and ownership before anyone else does. If none of these buyers are interested in placing a bid, media owners may consider opening up for an open RTB instead.

Programmatic guaranteed

Guaranteed programmatic deals are when media owners and buyers make a deal that the buyer will purchase any open ad slot that meets their criteria. This process is most similar to traditional direct ad sales and is operated on fully programmatic terms. This strategy may be helpful for saving time and generating performance reports since there is no manual work needed. However, inexperienced first-time buyers should start out by using an open RTB to understand the bidding system and transition into a programmatic guaranteed once their marketing strategy is consolidated. 

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