From RTB to RTG: OpenX Launches Private Marketplace Hybrid Dubbed Real-Time Guaranteed

Category: Platforms Posted at: 2016-08-05

OpenX unveiled a new product Tuesday, real-time guaranteed (RTG), with features that fall between private marketplaces and automated guaranteed. The aim is to solve drawbacks to each current buying method.

One of the biggest complaints about private marketplaces is that they don’t deliver the scale both sides want. And one of the biggest complaints about automated guaranteed is that the buyer can’t use its own data. Real-time guaranteed addresses both grievances.

“The challenge to date has been operational inefficiencies finding data-infused audiences at scale across quality inventory assets,” summed up Vincent Paolozzi, SVP of marketplace development and investment for Magna Global. The agency will be testing the program “with clients who have aggressive audience targeting initiatives.”

To ensure publishers and advertisers have an idea of where their audiences will overlap, OpenX developed audience forecasting for RTG.

Buyers and sellers can do an audience sync before striking a deal to forecast how many impressions a publisher can deliver. The audience sync allows both sides to know upfront how much scale can be reached on a site – for instance, 15 million impressions reaching women 18-34 or 500,000 reaching auto intenders.

Once both sides understand the scale available, the publisher may agree that it will send 10 million of those females 18-34 impressions to the advertiser, with the advertiser taking 70% of them. OpenX anticipates these impressions will be bought at a fixed price, not an auction.

Right now, traders must do manual adjustments to ensure they’re buying enough of a publisher’s impressions through their DSP. But OpenX is in conversations with DSPs who are interested in building the functionality into their products. Instead of just focusing on price, the DSPs would create “reserved” line items, programmed to evenly pace impressions throughout a campaign with a publisher.

“In order for the industry to support this buying model, there will need to be changes within DSPs,” acknowledged Paul Sternhell, general manager of programmatic direct and the ad server for OpenX.

For publishers to use real-time guaranteed, they’ll have to implement OpenX’s header bidding product, which enables it to see and bid on all impressions passing through the server. Being in the header also allows the audience sync to take place.

“We hope to see this drive deeper audience matching and broader opportunities to collaborate with key publisher partners,” Paolozzi said.

OpenX hopes the focus on guaranteed will make publishers comfortable opening up more premium sections of their sites to data-driven ad buyers.

Adoption may ultimately depend on how agencies organize their trading desks in relation to the rest of a client’s team, according to Sternhell.

“The question is how much these worlds – the buyer looking for a premium brand website and reach and delivery against those goals and the trading desk focused on audience targeting and ROI – are going to converge,” he said.