Top Media Planning Tools You Need in 2022

Top Media Planning Tools You Need in 2022

Organizations invest money and efforts in choosing the right channels to deliver their marketing campaigns. But the process of media planning can be time consuming and complex. To be effective, marketers need tools, templates, and software that streamline the media planning process, as well as help analyze and track performance and budget.

So, how do you choose the right media tools? Here we bring you the top list you should consider in 2022.

What Is Media Planning?

Let’s start with a definition:

Media planning is a process used by marketers to decide when, how often, and where they will run ads to achieve the organization’s marketing goals. 

The media plan includes instructions on how to distribute the budget and resources, the channels they will use, and what type of ads will be run.

Elements of a Media Plan

What is in the media plan?

The media plan should be detailed and clear. Besides a detailed budget, it should contain the steps you’ll take for your advertising strategy, which channels will you use for your ads, and how frequently will you run them.

Some of the elements that  you may find in a media plan include:

  • Your business goals: you should align the strategy with the organization’s general business goals.
  • Your audience: who does your ad need to reach?
  • Your conversion goals: what are your goals for this campaign? What would you consider a successful outcome?
  • Your budget: what’s the budget you can or will assign to this advertising campaign? How is the budget distributed among the different ad types and channels?
  • The pricing model: what pricing model will you adopt? Cost per click, Cost per Mille, or Cost per Action?
  • The media channels: What media channels will you use for each ad type? Where will you advertise?

Learn more about media planning with our Essential Guide to Media Planning and Free Templates

Top Media Planning Tools

There is a myriad of media planning tools available, both free and paid. We ranked the best options for you:

1. Hubspot media planning template

Hubspot Media Panning Template

Source: Hubspot

If your focus is budget tracking, the Hubspot media plan template is a complete solution. It features automated reporting, tracking and attribution. You also get charts that adjust automatically to spending and ROI. The best feature? It is free to download.

2. Media plan HQ

Media Plan HQ


When spreadsheets—no matter how advanced—are not enough, it is time to move to a scalable platform. Media Plan HQ enables you to manage multiple media plans with a clear structure. It allows the creation of detailed media placements, capturing the information the team needs to execute media placements from booking to delivery and attribution. The platform also tracks media spending and enables split budgets in campaigns.

3. BluHorn



This platform is focused on programmatic media buying. It integrates data from Social media and ad networks into a proprietary programmatic buying portal. It is integrated with Google Analytics so you can compare spending to traffic results. The platform is cloud-based, so you can access your data and resources from anywhere, anytime. It integrates with Nielsen, Google Analytics, Facebook, and AWS.

4. Quantcast Media Planner

Quantcast Media Planner


It is a service for agencies and marketers that helps them find audiences that match their campaign targets. The service is free and provides users with visibility into audiences, reporting and analysis in a single platform. Quantcast Media Planner enables marketers to segment searches by demographics and interests.  It is AI-powered and gives fast granular insights.

5. Comscore

Is a tool for planning and analyzing media across platforms. It gives marketers data on digital platforms, television and film. The service provides audience data and insights that help marketers plan their media.

Difference Between Media Planning and Buying

Usually, there is confusion between media buying and media planning terms. Let’s clarify.

What is media buying? Is the purchasing of advertising space from a media channel. Before the Internet, media buyers would purchase buying time from a tv station, print or ad space from a magazine, or billboard signs.

With the appearance of online marketing, now media buyers can purchase ad space on a website, or set programmatic bids on ad networks.

Thus, there are two main types of media buying:

  • Manual (direct):  Direct buys happen when media buyers negotiate ad space inventory directly with publishers.
  • Programmatic (automated): Here, media buyers buy ad placements with the help of automated technology.

According to eMarketer, programmatic buying is fastly becoming the standard for media buying, with 90% of the digital ad budget spent on programmatic buying.

Digital Display Ad Spending Forecast


Want to learn more? Check our Media Buying Ultimate Guide

Types of Media Planning

Selecting the right media channels for your campaign can be a bit tricky. The best strategy should be based on what makes your audience tick, which media they consume. It makes no sense to publish in offline media for a digital audience, for example. Most organizations are using a combination of channels, which is called the media mix. 

Media mix: This is the combination of media channels an organization uses to meet its marketing goals. 

What should you include in your media mix? Again, it will depend on your audience, and campaign objectives. Here are some of the most popular media channels marketers use.

Offline Media

    • Print media: Magazines and printed newspapers are not dead, and could be a good way to reach a targeted niche. For example, when advertising for a local audience. In addition, newspaper and magazine readers are usually higher educated and with a higher income.
    • Radio: Radio still has appeal. It is a low-cost medium and highly effective when combined with other media. While it is common to listen to online broadcasts and podcasts, 68% of U.S adults still listen to the radio.
    • TV & Cable: TV is still highly visual and has all the advantages of a video channel. You can demonstrate a product in real-time. Despite the enormous popularity of streaming media, Americans still watch an average of 3 hours and 17 minutes a day.

Average time spent in watching TVSource

  • Outdoors media: billboards can get a lot of attention. They can be expensive, though, with rates in the US ranging from $1500/month for a billboard in Philadelphia to $20000/month in NY. Billboards on the right side of the road, are typically more expensive than those on the left side of the road. Traditional outdoor billboards are also less invasive and highly trusted by viewers.

Online media

  • Social media: It is a cost-effective medium and one that can be finely targeted to reach the intended user. Social platforms offer brands to connect with user communities interested in their type of product, or service.
  • Programmatic advertising:  Programmatic advertising is the automated way to select the best ad placement for an ad and the best advertiser for a publisher. This technology uses an algorithm to find and target the right audience for each ad, across digital platforms. The entire process takes seconds, via an automated bidding process. There are two main bidding methods:
  • Programmatic bidding: this method enables advertisers to use demand-side platforms to buy ads on ad exchanges and supply-side platforms based on their target audience.
    • Pay per click (PPC): It is a cost-effective medium, where advertisers pay for every click their ad gets. It also enables publishers to retarget people that visited their sites.
    • Real-time bidding: it allows advertisers to bid on impressions geared to their target audience. If their bid wins the automated tender, their ad gets displayed.
  • Digital publications: newsletters and other digital publications offer advertisers the opportunity to reach their database via a personalized newsletter, a direct email, or sponsored posts. As many blogs and digital magazines are specialized, they make it easy to reach your target audience and generate leads.

Why Do You Need Media Planning Tools?

Media planning is a continuous process that requires effort to keep the campaigns aligned with the marketing goals. You need to adapt to the needs of your audience and understand the channels you can use to spread your company’s message.

Trying to get an effective media campaign without the help of technology is practically impossible these days. You need tools, templates, software, and data that give you insights and provide a framework you can follow.

Simply put, media planning tools make your work easier by helping you manage the different channels, resources, and messages you use in media planning and buying.

What To Look For in a Media Planning Tool

Media planning tools need to help with high-level tasks, like budgeting, planning, and pulling reports. You need a tool that gives you visibility over your entire campaign, especially when you are running multiple campaigns.

Two characteristics that can solve the above pain points are first, using cloud-based media planning and management solutions, and second, using tools that integrate well with your existing software. 

Here are key features you should look for when shopping for media planning software:

  • Data structure and organization: controlling the data taxonomy, naming conventions, and tagging is critical to organizing it. I prevent classification errors and missing data. When looking for media planning software, look for a solution that enables you to customize your data classification.
  • Streamline work process: global teams don’t need to use a different app for each task to accomplish, an integrated single platform with collaboration features and storage.
  • Campaign tracking and optimization: look for a solution that simplifies tracking campaign metrics and performance. Integrating with social media, and ad network platforms are a plus.
  • Results and reporting: measuring the campaign performance, engagement, and spending requires serious reporting capabilities. The best media planning tools generate custom dashboards that give you easy visibility and reporting.
  • Security features: in the age of data breaches, protecting your marketing data from unauthorized access is vital. Look for a solution that includes strong user access permissions control and other security features, like encryption, and traffic monitoring.
  • Customer service and support: installing a new platform can take some time and a learning curve. Look for a solution that offers dedicated customer support, FAQs, and a knowledge base so you can hit the ground running with the platform.

How To Craft The Perfect Media Strategy

When you start with the media plans, here are some tips you can follow:

  • Choose the media channels that offer the most reach: analyze which media outlets can maximize the exposure to your target audience. For example, advertising on live-streaming events ensures your audience is already watching the program live.
  • Set clear goals: what do you expect from the campaign? Is the goal to increase brand exposure or lead generation?
  • Focus on engagement: what media mix will encourage your audience to talk about your brand? Pick a strategy that will work with what makes your audience tick.
  • Select your attribution models wisely: your attribution model can effectively track online and offline media. The right attribution model can help your team make data-driven decisions.

Increase efficiency and profitability

Media planning tools can increase the efficiency of your media buying strategy. But if you want to boost your revenues using a monetization platform is the way to go. In addition to leveraging the right channels for your strategy, working with CodeFuel helps you maximize yield through optimizing your landing pages. Wherever you buy media, with CodeFuel you enjoy the flexibility to deploy your monetization pages in conjunction with other offers, on your domain or utilizing our ready to go pages. Talk to us today and start maximizing your media and marketing efforts.

Advertising Media Channels: How to Choose & Types

Advertising Media Channels: How to Choose & Types

An integral part of your advertising campaign is choosing where you are going to advertise. Which marketing and advertising channels can give you the best results for your campaign investment? The right media channels help you reach high intent consumers, encouraging conversions. Choosing the wrong channels can waste your time and money.

But, how do you choose among so many channels available? Should you advertise on social media? Should you run display ads? There are many “experts” out there claiming this or that is the right channel to do. In reality, the best media channel is the best for your strategy.

This post will give you an overview of advertising media channels and tips on choosing the right mix for your campaign. Let’s get started.

What do you mean by advertising media?

Definition of  Media Channel

Advertising media consist of the media channels you use for communicating a promotional message.

Examples of advertising media can include online banners, billboards, print media. When media planners and marketers create their marketing campaigns, they weigh the advantages and disadvantages of each type of advertising media.

The role of the advertising media channels

Marketers leverage different types of advertising media, creating a media mix. The media mix allows them to engage with different audiences in different ways. In online marketing, advertisers use advertising media on digital properties or in email marketing campaigns. Advertising media aims to catch the customer’s attention and encourage them to move down the purchasing funnel.

Some media channels are more expensive than others. Television, for example, is the most expensive. Even among online advertising, some advertising models are more expensive than others. That is why you should be very careful and evaluate which ones make the greatest impact for the least cost. More importantly, you should choose them based on the campaign’s goals and the channel’s capability to reach your target audience.

What is a media planner?

Media planners specialize in identifying which media platforms will advertise the client’s brand to the target audience. They work with media planning or advertising audience. A media planner chooses the media channels and creates a media plan to maximize the impact of the advertising.

Media planners work in advertising and marketing agencies and publishing houses. These marketing specialists know how to make the most return from the media plan. Their specific responsibilities include creating the media mix, coordinating ads, and monitoring the success of advertising campaigns.

How to get the most impact per exposure by media planning?

It all starts by designing the right media plan. Before you can choose the advertising channels, you need to know your goals and how you will achieve them. That includes knowing who your audience is, what budget you count on. Then you can choose what is the best media mix to achieve your objectives.

Here is a quick step-by-step from our article: What Is Media Planning? Essential Guide and Best Free Templates to Download

1. Define your goals

Write down what do you want to achieve with your media plan. To find out, look at the organization’s business goals and check how the campaign will align with them. Doing this will help you define the media goals for the campaign. Analyze your organization’s positioning in the market and the marketing problem your campaign will try to solve.

Remember to create SMART goals (specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and timely), so you can track them with KPIs.

2. Define your target audience

Now that you know the What, it is time to define the Who. Who are you creating this campaign for? Gather as much information as you can about your target audience, their demographics, habits, and interests. Then craft the plan around your ideal buyer persona. The more you fine-tune your message, the better the results.

3. Think about your budget, frequency, and reach

At this stage, you have the perfect media plan idea, so it is time to know how much you can spend on your campaign. To determine a budget, start by considering how often you need to run ads for your audience to respond.

Finding the perfect frequency is critical. You want to hit that spot where your ad is repeated enough for the viewer to remember it without falling in the “oh no, that ad again.” At least ten exposures are needed to encourage action from a customer. But be careful; one too many repetitions and your engagement plummet.

4. Select the media channels

Now is the time to choose carefully where you are going to advertise. Consider which platforms you will use, methods, and their pricing models. Use the information you already know about your consumers and your campaign goals to select which channels can have the most impact with less cost.

5. Write the plan

Put everything into writing. A media plan should be as detailed as possible and measurable. Details like the number of impressions you need, the frequency, specific channels,  everything should be in your media plan. But don’t worry, you don’t need to write it from scratch. In the article, we mention that you can have a selection of free templates to download.

6. Monitor, measure, analyze. 

When running the campaign, analyze the goals and track engagement, conversions, and clicks you set in your media plan.

How to measure the impact of your campaign?

A lot of research and planning goes into your media buying strategy. The more refined your media plan, the better. However, without proper measurement, your efforts can be like shooting in the dark. How to measure the success of your media mix will depend largely on what you want to achieve with it. Here is our pick of the metrics you can’t miss:


How many times are your ads served (how many people saw your ads)? Most publishers rate their ad space by thousand impressions (CPM). Cost per Mille (per 1000 impressions) is calculated by dividing the campaign’s cost by a thousand.

Cost per Mille: 1000 * cost/impressions


The number of users that clicked your ad after seeing it. If you want to know how many times people click on your ad related to the number of times it is served, you need to measure click-through rate The click-through rate is calculated by dividing the number of impressions between the number of clicks.

CTR: (Impressions / clicks) * 100

For example, if your ad was served 20,000 times, and of those, 450 people clicked on it, your CTR is (20,000 /450) = 4.44%


This metric measures how much it costs each click on a campaign. It is calculated by dividing the total advertising cost of the campaign/ the total number of clicks. This will give you the average cost per click. To calculate the actual CPC, you need to factor in your competitor’s ad rank and your quality score in GoogleAds.

Average CPC: Total advertising cost of the campaign/ total number of clicks

Adwords quality score

Google uses this measure to assess the relevance of the keywords you target. They consider factors like the click-through rate, the quality of your landing page, and the keywords related to the ad.

Campaign Engagement

Campaign engagement consists of the sum of the total engagement taking place in an ad campaign. This metric considers a combination of interactions, not only clicks but shares, comments, and reactions.

Campaign Engagement Formula

Sum (total posts interactions) + (Sum (Campaign Clicks))

We can understand it better with an example. Your campaign consists of two ads, ad “A and ad “B.”

  • Ad “A” receives 300 reactions, 15 comments, and 100 clicks to the landing page.
  • Ad “B” receives 200 reactions, ten comments, and 50 clicks to your landing page.

The campaign engagement for this ad campaign will be the sum of this interaction for both ads: Sum (300+200+25) + (150) = 675


Regardless of the platform you are using, conversion tracking is essential. Without it, you cannot understand how your channels are faring. You get the conversion rate by dividing the number of conversions between clicks on the ad.

Conversion rate = Total clicks/ conversions

For example, let’s say your ad got 450 clicks in a set time, and from these clicks, only 45 people finalized the action intended with the ad. Your conversion rate is 10%.

Types of advertising media channels

As we saw before, media planners should clarify the overall objectives behind their media campaign. Then they should consider which channel is the most appropriate for the type of advertisement they will run and the target audience. Here are the three most popular

Video advertising: pros and cons

The popularity of video advertising is growing. It is expected that 82% of internet traffic will be video. Not only do more people online watch videos but the amount of video content is increasing too.

Video Advertising


Video ads expanded to include website video ads, app video ads, and social media. As a result, media planners can serve their advertisements in an array of digital properties. Here are the pros and cons of online video advertising:


  • It is cheaper:  An online ad is cheaper than traditional media like television. A TV 30s ad prime time slot can cost over $100,000. A short video that can be skipped after the same 30s on YouTube can cost you $0.030, per view, with an average cost of reaching 100,000 viewers of $2000.
  • You have instant results: with online advertising, you can track the performance of your ad in real-time and can take action immediately.
  • Multiple formats: rich media ads come in several formats. You have reels, stories, and short shoppable videos besides video ads if you use social media.
  • Across devices and screens: online video ads are always with the consumer, on their phone and desktop. The ad can show everywhere there is a screen.
  • Global reach: online video gives you the possibility to expand your reach. You are not limited to local engagement (unless you want to).


  • Option to skip ad: this option significantly reduces the chances your user will view your ad twice. At least, you can set non-skippable or skip-after-30s ads.
  • Ads can be placed in the wrong slot: or next to the wrong content. Sometimes this happens. That’s why it is important to choose the right platform that will give you contextual targeting.

Audio – podcasts: pros and cons


The podcast is a newer form of audio medium that has been gaining momentum in recent years. It has an advantage over visual ads— the consumer doesn’t have to see the ad —. That gives an extra level of convenience for users. 54% of users will consider a product mentioned in a podcast. As 1 in 4 Americans listen to podcasts, the field has much to offer.


The other side of the coin with podcasts is that the listener is often occupied with other things, like driving, working, shopping. Additionally, it is difficult for an audio channel to illustrate a product.

Digital content – digital ads pros and cons

Digital ads have different formats, banner ads, interstitials, pop-ups, the list is long. In our guide, Ad Revenue: What Is and How to Increase it? You’ll find a detailed explanation of the different ad types. Here are the pros and cons of digital ads:


  • You can target specific segments: you can focus your ad in detail over a particular market segment, according to their location, gender, age, interests, and past purchases.
  • It is cheaper than offline advertising: digital ads are more cost-effective and offer a wider reach than traditional media like TV and print magazines.
  • You get accurate result statistics: ad networks and monetization platforms offer real-time tracking of the success of your ads.
  • Provides improved customer experience: the convenience of having an ad the consumer can click and buy instantly cannot be compared to traditional one-way advertising.
  • Features a wide range of formats: banners, half page, interstitial, in-app, the list is endless. There is an ad format for every marketing need.


  • Ad space is limited: the ad format requires your message to be short, bold, and catchy. Visuals are everything when it comes to catching the viewer’s attention.
  • The number of clicks decreases with the number of impressions: click-through rates are decreasing. At the beginning of digital advertising, it was fairly easy to entice users to click. Now you have to overcome ad blockers and users ignoring your hard work. Some ads are unpopular because they disrupt the user experience. The secret: make the ad enhance the user experience instead. 

How to Choose the Right Advertising Media?

A successful media plan requires creating a calculated strategy that enables you to reach the right user with the right message at the right time and via the right channel —within your budget—. While there isn’t a magic formula to know exactly which channel will give you the best result, you can increase your accuracy by thorough research.

Start by looking at your competitors.

Where does your competitor advertise? By conducting a competitive analysis, you can learn where you may get the best results. Look at the channels they are using, their ad formats, and their types. Do they rely most on video or display ads? Do they use social media? Since you share the same audience, you can get helpful insights into your brand by looking at their strategy.

Do you know your audience?

This is the most important step. You should know where your audience is, where they shop. Most importantly, pay attention to what they value most, what they are looking for from your product or service, and align your message to them.

The importance of the buyer persona

A buyer persona is a construction of your ideal customer. It has a name, an occupation, interests, and expectations. Buyer personas enable you to understand better the needs of your customers. You can tailor your marketing efforts towards the right user when you write for a specific person instead of a generic customer base.

Buyer personas help marketers understand how buyers go through the customer journey. They help you attract and retain more targeted users.

Know your budget

You should budget carefully. Use your media plan to fine-tune yourself as much as possible. Figure out how much money you have for your campaign. This will save you much hassle and heartache when choosing your channels. Then you can prioritize the channels that will give you the best results.

Keep in mind that spending a lot of money on your campaign doesn’t guarantee the best results. To avoid wasting money, craft your message carefully, so your ads get through to the right user.

Set SMART goals and measure them

It is worthwhile to say it again, knowing what you want to achieve is critical for success. To achieve that, ensure your goals are as SMART as possible:

Instead of stating “increasing our sales”, try: “ increasing our sales in the X segment by 30% in the next quarter”. The more realistic and attainable your goals, the better results.

How to Mix the Advertising Media Channels Right

You cannot give all advertising channels the same weight in your budget. Prioritizing your channels isn’t easy. Here is an easy score system that can help you:

  • Find out the impact of your digital marketing channel

This metric will tell you what kind of results you can expect from this channel. When you implement a campaign or strategy, you want to make the most impact. High impact channels bring results quickly. Assign a number from 1 to 10 for the possible results of a campaign based on case studies.

  • What is your channel’s confidence?

The next metric you need to measure is the channel’s confidence. Taking risks with a channel you haven’t used can have its rewards, but investing in channels you trust is best. Again, assign a score from 1 to 10 to the confidence of each channel.

  • Understand how easy your channel is.

This metric will tell you what kind of results you can expect from this channel.

An easy channel is one where you can quickly and efficiently implement your campaign with your resources. A difficult channel requires you to acquire skills, add staff or resources. Again, give a score to each of your channels.

Once you have all scores assigned, add them to find your final score. Then prioritize the channels based on the score. The channels with the highest scores will be the ones you should give more of your investment.

Pro-tip: use search and programmatic advertising

According to a study, by the end of 2021, 88% of digital display marketing in the US will be done via programmatic advertising. Programmatic advertising can simplify advertising and target prospects more effectively.

Programmatic advertising overview

Programmatic advertising is the use of Artificial Intelligence and machine learning to buy and sell advertising in real-time. 

Instead of negotiating ads directly between publishers and advertisers, ad networks were created. These are platforms that gather unsold inventory from inventories and sell it to advertisers at a discount rate.

Ad networks and other monetization platforms use real-time bidding (RTB) to make transactions in real-time when it gets to load a web page. When a visitor enters a website, a request is sent to an ad exchange with information about the website. This information is matched against available advertisers, and a real-time auction happens between the advertisers. The highest bidder gets the ad space instantly.

Programmatic advertising, especially if including contextual marketing, enables you better target your users. That means only visitors who are in your target audience can be served the ad.

How CodeFuel simplifies the media mix management

CodeFuel is a complete monetization platform that leverages the power of contextual advertising to reach the maximum impact on your campaigns. The platform uses machine learning and artificial intelligence to deliver intent-based ads.

You won’t need to endlessly pour over statistics to find the perfect channels to deliver the best results. CodeFuel platform does it for you. Start monetizing today.

What Is the MarTech (Marketing Technology) Industry and How Does It Simplify Media Trading?

What Is the MarTech (Marketing Technology) Industry and How Does It Simplify Media Trading?

Long gone were the days where a marketer will conduct research and campaigns manually. The current marketing industry relies primarily on technology. These tools, known as MarTech, simplify most marketing activities, including media trading. In this post, we’ll explore what is MarTech and how it makes media trading a breeze.

What Is MarTech (or Marketing Technology)?

MarTech is an umbrella term for the group of software tools marketers use to plan, execute, and measure marketing campaigns. These tools are used to simplify marketing processes through automation. They collect and analyze data, streamline campaign management and engagement with your target audience. The group of tools the company uses for marketing activities is called a MarTech Stack.

Why is Marketing Technology Important?

Modern marketing wouldn’t be possible without marketing technology.Every time you use an email platform to distribute an email campaign or analyze your website analytics, you are using MarTech. Here are some reasons why MarTech is important:

MarTech integrates marketing and operations

Marketing technology fosters collaboration between the marketing and operations departments. MarTech tools, teams get real-time data to make data-driven decisions.

MarTech enables you to assess the entire customer journey

When you integrate MarTech you get to look at the customer data from the first visit to the purchase. MarTech enables you to answer questions about your customer like:

  • How do they find you? What was their first interaction with your brand?
  • Which of your channels convert better?
  • How can you improve your marketing strategy and help your customers convert?.

MarTech helps you market smarter

When you use MarTech tools, you can automate efficiency, streamline data and processes. As a result, leveraging technology enables you to market faster and smarter.

What Is MarTech Used for?

The combination of digital tools you use to optimize your work is called the MarTech stack. It addresses most marketing activities and several use cases such as:

Data and analytics solutions

Marketers collect statistical data, analyze it and use it to determine trends and actions.

The marketing technology helps marketers to plan, and run marketing campaigns. Digital analytics software helps marketers analyze consumer behavior by gathering and understanding data. They also allow marketers to measure and understand the performance of the campaigns.

What type of solution do you use for this use case? Digital analytics software (think Google Analytics)

Commerce and sales

Another part of the marketing stack is sales automation solutions. These technologies include the automation of the sales process from lead acquisition to purchase. MarTech tools enable collaboration among marketing, sales, distribution, and logistics, across the supply chain. By doing this, MarTech tools then help bridge the gap between marketing and sales, driving lead generation, and improving customer experience.

Solutions you may use for this case: CRM software, sales software (for example, Salesforce, Shopify)

Content and experience

Marketing tools can help companies manage their content efficiently and create a holistic experience for the customers. Content and experience tools that help marketers even build a website so they can manage their web presence and deliver engaging and informative content. Other tools help with search engine optimization, search marketing, or social media.

Customer relations

Customer relations implies strategies and practices which manage the relationships and interactions with customers across their journey. These solutions help automate repetitive tasks, increasing efficiency and giving a personalized experience to customers.

Marketing management

There are marketing solutions too to manage marketing talent, collaborations, and product management.

MarTech Best Practices

As the organization’s digital marketing needs grow, the solutions also multiply. As a result, marketers often struggle to find the right tool from thousands of different platforms. The growth of the Internet made the number of digital marketing solutions explode exponentially..

While in 2011, the number of companies was around 150, now this number surpasses the 5000.

Growth of Marketing Technology


With such a dynamic environment, marketers cannot afford to make mistakes. Therefore, to gain the best ROI from the marketing stack, here is a list of best practices:

  • Audit your existing stack

Before adding new technology, check what solutions you already have. If you don’t, you risk overlooking errors and ending with several solutions that don’t talk to each other. By doing this, it will help you assess the capabilities of your stack and prevent issues.

  • Ensure the new marketing technology integrates with your existing solutions

Once you choose a solution candidate, consider how the new technology will integrate with your existing stack. Lack of integration is one of the most common issues mentioned by marketers. The new solution needs to align with your business and marketing goals, support your use cases and business needs.

  • When outsourcing, choose a company that takes charge of the implementation

If you choose to buy the tool and implement it by yourself, make sure your team knows the fine details of implementing and running the tool. Otherwise, you can outsource the technology. In this case, ensure the vendor will take care of the setup and training.

  • Monitor marketing metrics

Monitoring and tracking metrics such as open rate, conversion rate, and such, can be time-consuming if done manually. Moreover, you risk missing the mark. Choose a solution that automatically tracks and measures your metrics and offers recommendations on how to improve your campaign for best results.

  • Leverage automation

To make the most of your MarTech, you should use it to automate your marketing system as much as possible. Automation helps you streamline your system, create more leads in less time, analyze customer data, and overall work faster and more effectively.

  • Don’t tamper with your marketing strategy

With the many tools available for your stack you will surely get a lot of recommendations to improve your strategy. However, don’t be tempted to change your entire strategy at once. This might create more problems than solutions. Build your MarTech stack around your sales and business goals and not the other way.

  • Leverage your data

Accurate data is like gold for marketers. To benefit from your data, the data center should have not only a lot of available data, but you should use the right tools that help you make sense of it. Keep in mind to segment your data and label your customers so you can maintain the data integrity and simplify accessing it.

Difference Between AdTech and MarTech

There is confusion among business owners and even marketers between AdTech (advertising technology) and MarTech (marketing technology). Although closely related, these technologies perform different functions. Let’s understand the difference between them.

What is AdTech?

AdTech is a group of technologies that simplify ad buying and selling programmatically. These solutions cover all the demand-side platforms, the supply-side platforms, and ad exchanges.

AdTech makes it possible for companies to target specific audiences and optimize their advertising spending.

Digital Ad Spending in the US


Ad technology is encouraging companies to leverage more digital advertising. As a result, ad spending has increased steadily, despite the pandemic impact, and is expected to reach $220.93 billion in 2022.

The full guide about what is AdTech

Difference in Platforms

First, the platforms used for online marketing and digital advertising are different. Most platforms are unique to each field. For example, advertisers use demand-side-platforms while a marketing agency will usually use an email automating tool.

Difference in Function

Ad tech is based on a working campaign. The advertisements and the measured metrics are designed to possibly create, execute and manage digital advertising campaigns. Ad tech makes it easy for publishers like app and website owners to sell their ad inventory available.

MarTech encompasses AdTech, and it includes also creating a sales funnel, nurturing leads, and testing campaigns.

AdTech Platforms and Tools

These platforms are used by the ad tech industry:

  • Demand-side platform

A demand-side platform is a software solution that allows media buyers buy inventory in ad exchanges and supply-side platforms. DSPs implement real-time bidding so advertisers buy media per the impression.

  • Supply-side platform

An SSP is the supplier-side version of a demand-side platform. It automates the offering of the inventory on an ad exchange. The technologies used in an SSP enable publishers to maximize their yield by getting the highest possible price for their inventory.

  • Ad network

An ad network usually buys inventory from suppliers and ad exchanges and sells them to advertisers. Learn more about ad networks and which are the best for publishers in our article 11 Best Ad Networks for Publishers in 2024.

  • Ad exchange

An ad exchange is a tech-powered marketplace that simplifies buying and selling ad space and impressions between suppliers and advertisers. The exchange manages the buying and selling process automatically via programmatic real-time bidding.

  • Ad server

An ad server is a software that determines which ads will be displayed on a digital property. This software serves the ad to the user according to the specifications set by the advertiser on the ad network or ad exchange. It also collects data about the ad’s performance, like clicks and impressions.

  • Search engine marketing platforms (SEM)

These platforms use programmatic paid advertising to promote a website on search engines. To achieve that, they connect to ad networks and exchanges.

The MarTech Stack

There are essential technologies both for B2B and B2C marketers:

  • Content management system: the software that helps you power your website, blog, or any other content where the marketers try to engage your potential audience.
  • AdTech platform: your AdTech stack should be part of your marketing stack. Consider signing up for an advertising network or monetization platform. Combine different types of display ads, retargeting, and ad tracking software.
  • Email marketing software: email is one of the most effective marketing channels and you need to have it in your toolkit if you want to engage and nurture your customers. Email marketing is sometimes part of inbound marketing solutions.
  • Analytics software: not only website analytics but business analytics capabilities should be included in your stack. In large companies, it could be necessary to leverage data warehouses or content intelligence solutions to understand your data in large companies.
  • Experiential marketing and optimization: event marketing is gaining momentum with the growth of virtual events. To make the most of experiential marketing, there are event management tools to add to your stack.
  • Social media management: who isn’t on social media these days? Ensuring your posts and content gets published on time, monitoring social activity, and increasing social engagement will depend in part on having the right tools.
  • Search engine optimization: great SEO can increase your brand exposure in search engines and drive organic traffic to your website. There are many solutions available to help with keyword research and other SEO-related initiatives activities.
  • Customer relationship management: Lastly, but not less important, the right sales and CRM solution can help you track the results of your marketing efforts.

How MarTech Simplifies Media Trading

Without MarTech, modern digital marketing and advertising wouldn’t be possible. The different solutions that comprise the MarTech stack help businesses streamline their marketing processes, among them, media trading.

What is media trading? It is the buying of ad space in real-time through an automated process (real-time bidding). Advertisers use programmatic tools to buy from publishers that make their inventory available on ad exchanges. Media traders are the people in charge of optimizing this process.

MarTech and AdTech tools help publishers maximize their yield and match advertisers’ demands. There is no need to be contacting advertisers directly to sell inventory because the tool takes care of everything in a matter of seconds.


It is without a doubt that the MarTech industry has revolutionized the way marketers and advertising agencies work. Leveraging MarTech tools like CodeFuel can simplify the process even more. By offering a complete monetization platform, you have an all-in-one solution to monetize your digital properties.

What is Media Mix Modeling(MMM) and How to Measure it?

What is Media Mix Modeling(MMM) and How to Measure it?

The saying goes that you cannot manage what you cannot measure. When it comes to choosing the right media mix to achieve your marketing efforts, how do you know what is working and what isn’t? Media mix modeling is a group of technologies and practices geared to identify the impact (in money and results) of your marketing tactics on your ROI. In this guide, we prepared all that you need to know about media mix modeling to start optimizing your campaigns.

Short on time? Here’s the table of contents:

What Is Media Mix Modeling in Marketing?

Media mix modeling (MMM) is a marketing analysis technique that determines the impact of marketing efforts on sales. An organization’s media mix is part of the marketing mix model and consists of combining an organization’s communication channels to get its brand message and marketing tactics to potential customers. 

The media mix may combine traditional advertising channels, like print, broadcast, TV, social media, and online advertising. Companies talk about the marketing mix when planning their campaign goals, which is an essential part of their marketing strategy.

What Is Media Mix Optimization?

Organizations optimize their media mix in order to gain insights into what they need to target their audience effectively. Not all companies can optimize their media mix because it is more suitable for online marketing. It requires looking into the analytics and ROI of different marketing strategies.

This is where media mix modeling comes to help.

How does Media Mix Modeling MMM work?

Media mix modeling, also called marketing mix modeling, analyzes collected and processed data from the channels that form the marketing mix. Some solutions enable marketers to factor in traditional channels, promotions, seasonality, and other variables.

The modeling collects data from disparate sources, which then applies advanced statistical analysis to, and enables to get insights into how effective the current campaign. MMM leverages metrics and variables like sales, ratings, or online analytics, allowing analysts to have a broader picture of the impact of the campaign in the marketplace in a measurable way.

MMM analyzes linear and non-linear variables. This means there are variables that a direct relationship with sales can measure. The more you increase the marketing input, the more sales grow. But other variables, like broadcasting, are more difficult to track. If a marketer would do that manually, it would be extremely difficult. MMM technology enables marketers to use artificial intelligence and advanced analytics to find out a quantifiable impact of each marketing effort, regardless of the channel.

The goal of a media mix modeling study is to measure the impact of each marketing activity on each channel. It works by quantifying the effect of advertising, pricing, PR, and sponsorships.

The term was coined in a paper by the Harvard Business Review, and the technique has been around for a few years. Thanks to the advance in statistical methods and artificial intelligence, media mix modeling can be done now in a simpler way.

The factors that may affect the marketing mix can be categorized as: 

Incremental drivers: this refers to business outcomes generated by marketing activities like print ads, digital spending, price discounts, social outreach.

Base drivers: this refers to outcomes achieved without any advertisements, usually due to brand equity. These outcomes usually don’t change unless there is an economic or environmental change.

Other drivers: related components of baseline factors, measured over a period of time.

Media mix modeling diagram

Example of a media mix modeling diagram (Image source)

How do you measure MMM?

Media mix modeling is measured by using regression analysis, specifically multi-linear regression. The model uses dependent and independent variables to identify a relation between them.

Analysts form an equation between the dependent and independent variables. Depending on the relation between the variables the equation can be linear or nonlinear. Here’s an example of an equation of multi-linear regression where each beta shows that an increase affects the total increase of sales.

Example of a sales equation

Example of a sales equation (Image source)

MMM helps marketers in optimizing future spending and maximizing the effectiveness of the marketing campaign.

Media Mix Modeling Ratio

Besides complex equations, the MMM ratio consists of three key components:

  1. What marketing channels are you using?
  2. How much money are you spending on each channel?
  3. What were previous campaign results and insights?

The answer to these three questions may determine what is the rate of effectiveness of your marketing efforts.

Marketing Mix Modeling Examples

Understanding media mix modeling can be daunting at first. Let’s explain it better with some marketing mix modeling examples: 

Case 1. 

A fashion brand that wants to find out how each media channel’s marketing contributes to sales. Let’s say the brand has both online and social media ads, and they want to know if it should focus its efforts more on social media. They’ll take the collected sales data during a specific time frame, typically two to three years. Then they use MMM to run a multivariate test, which can show how sales would look when changing the media set.

Case 2. 

A company that sells across different geographic regions. They want to know what of their marketing campaigns is affecting more on a specific region’s sales. They have to break their marketing budget by different channels, for example, paid search in Google vs. Bing. The MMM models their data and then tries to explain it without marketing input

Some tips we can take from these marketing mix modeling examples include taking at least two years of data so you can have two seasonal cycles and combine marketing and non-marketing data.

What Elements does the Media Mix Modeling Measure?

MMM Is a marketing analysis technique that measures what is the impact of a campaign and determines how each part of the marketing mix contributes (or not) to its success. The results of a media mix modeling study can give you insights that you can use to improve a campaign. Let’s summarize this with a definition: 

Media Mix Modeling is a top-down approach that uses tools and advanced analytics to evaluate how media and marketing activities, pricing, seasonality, and variable factors impact sales and ROI. It provides a measure of how activities contribute to the company’s ROI

Marketing analysts use data science techniques such as multi-linear regression to determine the effectiveness of each marketing input in terms of ROI. The goal is to identify which marketing efforts have higher ROI and are thus more impactful.

Ad Effectiveness

MMM model example (Image source

1. Sales Volume

Sales volume is one of the key elements measured in MMM. But the model considers two different aspects: base and incremental sales.

Base sales: These are the sales influenced by parameters like long-term trends, seasonality, brand awareness, brand loyalty, and pricing. We can also consider baseline sales as the revenue you could have without marketing input.

Incremental sales: They are the part of sales influenced by marketing activities. You can calculate incremental sales by applying the following formula:

Incremental sales = Total Sales – Baseline Sales

2. Media Marketing and Advertising Impact

What should you look into when measuring the impact of media and advertising on sales? For instance, comparing how effective are 15-sec vs 30-sec ads. Or comparing how ads running on different platforms perform. Or finally, comparing the outcomes of running ads during different times.

3. Pricing models

Sales are highly sensitive to pricing, but how much changing the pricing can influence your sales? You can see the impact with the help of MMM. Knowing this percentage is essential for your pricing strategy.

4. Distribution Systems

Distribution is key to preventing overlooked expenses, which can drive growth. Applying media mix modeling can help teams understand how changes in distribution can impact the sales volume across channels.

5. New Product Creations

Every product launch can impact the overall sales volume. A successful launch can pick up sales, but also increase the marketing budget. Marketing mix modeling can help determine how much of the sales volume is a result of the new product.

Common use cases for using MMM

Media mix modeling or as is also known as marketing mix modeling can be used to measure and optimize your marketing channels in terms of ROI. Here are some use cases you can apply this technique to: 

Budget setting and optimization: Large companies with geographically distributed campaigns across multiple media channels can benefit from the scalability of media mix modeling. Media mix modeling leverages automation to perform large-scale marketing effectiveness. 

Media measurement: You can measure the impact of different types of media campaigns, paid, owned, and earned. You can use media mix modeling to measure the customer journey in its path to purchase. The insights you get can be used to optimize your spending and actions across those channels. 

Measuring sales drivers: Marketing mix modeling can be used to find what are the factors driving sales, so you can invest more in the winning strategy.

How to Use Media Mix Modeling?

Media modeling gives marketers the opportunity to support their decisions with data, creating a data-driven approach that is more accurate and actually can save money and effort.

Research from a Forrester study, “The Current State of Marketing Measurement and Optimization”, shows that 71% of marketers are impaired by inefficient measurement methods and tools. Here is how to make the most of your media mix modeling:

1. Collect data at the personal level

At this moment, when third-party cookies are about to become a thing of the past, marketers everywhere are trying to collect the information they need. Personal level data allows you to have an accurate picture of how customers relate to the media mix you chose.

Person-level data means you assign data from sources to an individual consumer with the goal to answer business questions and pinpoint interactions at the user level. [CLICK TO TWEET]

In the Forester report mentioned above, 99% of marketers not currently using person-level data would like to use this approach today.  This granular approach allows you to conduct analysis at the user level instead of using the already aggregated data.

2. Check the type of data

Media modeling works better if you are working with digital channels than for traditional marketing methods. It is more difficult to measure the results of a newspaper ad or a radio broadcast. Achieving the right marketing mix, with a greater investment in online marketing channels (including mobile) can give you a more accurate picture. This is also consistent with trends towards online and mobile content consumption by users. By migrating campaigns to online channels, you can measure ROI more accurately and have better insights for decision-making.

3. Choose a platform that’s right for your organization

Using analytics software gives you an advantage. You can analyze the media mix by using platforms that collect user interaction data and provide tracking reports. The best approach is to choose a platform that gives you complete visibility of all the channels you are implementing. A software that can provide accurate and timely reports is also a must. You need to know how your channels are performing individually and as a part of your marketing campaign.

4. Analyze the data

Before getting into the analysis, you need to choose what metrics you want to measure for each channel. The wrong metrics can give you a completely different picture that is not akin to reality. Choose the metric you want to measure according to the goal you want from that channel or activity. For instance, email marketing newsletters can be measured by click-through rate more effectively than by measuring opening rates.

Once you chose the metrics and got the data, it is time to analyze and understand the reports. It is important to know what the data is telling you to use it to your advantage. Following the example of the email newsletters, if you see a high CTR from them, it is a sign that you should use this strategy for the next campaign for that audience.

Try to find the “high-performers” and the “low-performers” too. Knowing where your strengths and weaknesses in the campaign will help you adjust and improve it for next time.

5. Keep in mind social sentiment and brand perception

The success of a marketing campaign is not only measured in terms of conversions or clicks. Understanding how your potential audience perceives your brand can provide context and help you interpret the data better. Factor consumer opinion in your media mix model. How do you do it?

Conduct social media and search for sentiment analysis. Take note of what people are saying about your brand, the positive and the negative. You can use that information to create a survey and prove your findings by rating your company. Specifically, asking how likely they would recommend your business to a friend and what type of marketing content would they like to see more. This will give you an idea of where to focus your marketing efforts next.

How Do You Know The Media Mix is Right for Your Brand?

How do you determine the right media mix for your campaign? Let’s look at some of the factors you should consider when choosing your media mix.

Using multiple marketing channels to promote products and engage your users is a popular approach. However, randomly choosing as many channels as possible is not only ineffective but also can lose you a lot of money. Choosing the right mix is essential to achieve a successful campaign.

How do you start? By knowing and understanding your target audience. After all, your goal is to engage them. There are two key steps in choosing the right mix for your marketing strategy:

Define your target audience

This is the foremost step because without understanding your audience you are in the dark. Start by mapping basic demographic data: Location, gender, income, age, education level. Then you can further dig into finding interests, platforms they visit. How do you do it?

  • Check at your competitors: you can gain a lot of information about your potential customers by checking your competitor’s campaigns and social media sites.
  • Search in social media groups of interest: your customer talks about products related to yours on social media and review sites. Take a look at what they are saying, where they are located, and such.

You should know who the potential customers are for your product or service. A good rule of thumb is to create buyer personas to have a detailed idea of who is your ideal customer.

Collect and use reliable data

Gather data on your target audience according to what you know about your audience. For instance, organic research, competitor audits, sentiment analysis. Check data from media viewing research sites too to have a broad picture. The right data can provide the insight you need to choose the market mix that works.

Related content: What is Media Buying and the Best Templates to Download

Why is it worth Implementing the MMM (Marketing Mix Modeling)?

Marketing mix modeling is worth implementing, because it can help your organization understand the data behind your sales, understanding exactly how much exactly your marketing tactics are working. With the MMM you can understand how different activities drive a product’s metrics. You can use the modeling to optimize your marketing budget and get the most ROI.

Media mix modeling vs Data-Driven attribution modeling

Modern marketing is based on hard data, especially digital marketing. One of the questions prevalent in marketing departments is where the marketing budget goes. Attributing where the money was spent to lead generation and marketing goals is one of the key objectives of every marketer. Despite ongoing efforts and data-driven analysis, it is a challenge to attribute accurately. Marketers diverge if attribution modeling or media mix modeling is the best measurement model to use.  Let’s examine each one.

What is the Attribution Model?

Attribution Modeling is a bottom-up approach used for measuring marketing efficacy. This method analyses and identifies the value of each marketing initiative by looking at the actions users take before converting. 

Attribution modeling focuses on the outcomes of the marketing efforts as measurements, online sales, advertising, and similar conversion efforts.

There are five types of attribution models: 

  • Last interaction

Last interaction

This involves attributing the credit of the conversion to the last lead a user interacted with. This method is used by default in many marketing teams. For example, if a user finds your site by a Google Ad, but makes the purchase finally from a Twitter ad, the ad gets 100% credit for that sale. 

  • First Interaction

First Interaction

This involves assigning credit to the first introduction of the user to the business. In the above example, the Google ad would get credit instead of the Twitter ad. 

  • Last non-direct click

This model also attributes all credit to a single interaction. The basis of this approach is that the last action is triggered by the last non-direct click because it is when the user is exposed to your marketing efforts. 

  • Linear attribution

This model divides the attribution equally among all user interactions before conversion. That means ⅓ would go to the Google ad, ⅓ to your website, and ⅓ to the Twitter ad. The problem with this model is that it doesn’t account for the level of influence of each interaction. 

  • Time decay attribution

An evolution of the linear attribution model takes into account when each interaction takes place and gives more importance to the interactions that happen close to the time of purchase. This would give the Twitter ad more value than the other interactions. 

  • Position-based attribution

This model also splits the difference when allocating conversion credit. It gives 40% to the first interaction, 40% to the last, and 20% to divide among all the other interactions.

The difference of Media Mix Modeling

Media mix modeling uses a regression analysis evaluating the impact of multiple variables on a single variable like sales figures. It calculates the relationship between the independent variables and the dependent variable.

Attribution modeling could have worked in the past for simple marketing strategies with few channels. However, this proves difficult for the complex and distributed strategies of today’s marketing. Media Mix Modeling can account for a wide range of data from diverse sources.

Measured vs. Platform Reporting, Multi-touch-Attribution (MTA), and Media Mix Modeling (MMM) Comparison Table:

Neutral and Independent
Causal incremental
Scale testing
Granular insights
Cross channel
Walled Garden
Strategic Planning
Timely Insights
Data Management
Built for marketing analytics
Data Quality






Data Management
Other Measurement




Data Management
Other Measurement






Data Management
Other Measurement






Data Management
Measured Advantage

Trusted measurement;

Productized Experiments

Identify saturation curves
Future proof
Depth of Measurement

Daily and Weekly Insights

Bottom Up Forecasting
On Time, reliable

Analytics Ready

Source of Truth Platforms

Pros and Cons of conducting a MMM

When should you use MMM? Implementing a media mix modeling can be more effective:

There is enough data to estimate the parameters in the model.
There is a range of variability in the advertising levels and control variables.
The model inputs vary independently
The model accounts for the drivers that may impact ROI.
The model captures the relationship between variables

There are challenges from issues that may affect the reliability of results from MMM. 

So, what are the pros and cons of using marketing mix modeling? Here is a summary:

MMM Pros
It is a great starting point for planning a marketing budget at a high level.
It provides a holistic approach to marketing trends.
It highlights trends and insights on what is working on the campaigns.
MMM Cons
It doesn’t give insights at a granular level.
It is difficult to measure digital and traditional marketing ROI.
It doesn’t account for cross-channel impact.
Doesn’t account for different times to send marketing messages

Limitations of MMM Marketing Mix Modeling

When using marketing mix models, marketers need to take into account several elements across their ecosystem, which may include:

  • Person-level, behavioral data
  • The impact brand authority has on the marketing spend
  • What are the key times to send marketing messages
  • What’s the proper attribution on individual media effectiveness

Taking into account all these metrics may have caused issues of the reliability of the media mix modeling. Marketing mix models enable marketers to unify the measurement. 

Another problem with marketing mix models is that they usually require a lot of data to give accurate insights. Typically, two years of historical data. Many organizations don’t have the data infrastructure in place needed to collect and process these massive amounts of data.

Advantages of Marketing Mix Modeling

While MMM cannot identify individual opportunities to optimize their campaign optimization. It gives the starting point for high-level marketing budget planning, providing a holistic approach to general market trends, giving marketers a full-circle view into their prospective markets.

Common myths about MMM

Like many analytic solutions has become very popular, but does it live up to all the hype? Here are a few misconceptions people have around media mix modeling:

  • Media mix models are obscure: since there are datasets and advanced analytics involved in media mix modeling, these methods are considered lacking in transparency. This raises the question of how do you know if the model is accurate if you cannot see it all? The right approach is implementing a transparent approach, determining deliverables, outlines, milestones, and reports.
  • MMM doesn’t provide real-time data: the truth is that MMM is based on historical data. However, modern media mix models can provide near real-time marketing insights, that can evaluate new campaigns, and assess the effectiveness of a  running campaign.
  • Is biased to offline/online channels: media mix strategies may focus more on offline channels. But modern media mix models consider all channels, digital and offline. Media marketing models are adapted to take into account each channel and its importance as a factor.

The History of MMM

Marketers started to use Media (or Marketing) Mix Modeling in the golden age of advertising, around 1960-1970 when marketing was much simpler than today. One of the early users of media modeling was Kraft Foods when they launched Jell-O. 

Traditional MMM allowed Kraft to see how sales would be affected according to different levels of advertisement and geographical location. For instance, how would sales increase by running campaigns in 10 cities instead of four?. 

Nowadays, with the application of artificial intelligence data analysis to media mix modeling, analysts can get insights practically in real-time as campaigns are running.

What to look for in MMM tools

To implement an effective media mix modeling you need marketing performance tools that give you the insights you need. Here’s what you need to know when looking for a solution:

  • Balancing long and short-term growth: most of your efforts should be focused on long-term growth but don’t overlook short-term goals. The Institute of Practitioners in Advertising suggests a ratio of 60/40 long and short-term marketing activities. Your marketing performance tool needs to analyze how both campaigns will grow your business.
  • Collects and measures data from disparate sources: this is one of the basic features of a marketing performance tool. To be effective at media mix modeling you need a tool that can collect, process, and analyze data from digital and traditional media. Since most of these data sources have their own analytics, you need an orchestration platform that can ingest the data from these sources and give you the insights you need.
  • Takes into account external variables: political, economical, and social changes can affect marketing efforts. A good tool needs to recognize disrupting variables and assess how they would impact your long-term campaigns.  
  • Consider the customer journey: a media mix modeling needs to account for the interactions along a customer journey. Your tools should be able to tell you what is the impact of each step, considering customer purchase patterns and predicting consumer trends.

FAQs About MMM

How do you do a market mix model?

Base variables or incremental variables are taken into account, quantifying them and breaking down business metrics to find out how marketing and promotion activities contribute to ROI. 

What type of Modelling method is critical for marketing mix evaluation?

Marketing Mix analysis is typically done using linear regression. Other effects as non-linear and lagged are included to have a broader approach. 

What is market mix Modelling?

Market Mix Modeling is a technique that helps to quantify several marketing inputs on sales or market share. The goal of marketing modeling is to understand how much each marketing technique is affecting sales in terms of ROI. The idea is to detect which marketing inputs have a higher ROI and which ones need adjustments.

How CodeFuel optimizes media buying and management

Media buying is an essential part of media mix modeling. After all, the channels you use will determine how they will impact your marketing campaign. CodeFuel simplifies media buying by serving intent-based search and shopping ads. By delivering the right ads to the right buyers at the right time, your campaign is more effective. Start optimizing your marketing campaigns effectively with CodeFuel today. Sign up.

What is Ad Tech Industry and How it Makes Media Trading Simpler

What is Ad Tech Industry and How it Makes Media Trading Simpler

The ad tech industry changed significantly from a decade ago. Long gone are the days of negotiating ad placements between publishers and advertisers.The biggest change happened at the peak of the digital advertising evolution, where giants like Google and Facebook gained the possibility of making billions in revenue today. 

The other change resulted in publishers and developers being able to generate income from their digital properties. But what is ad tech, and how is it shaping media trading

What is Ad Tech, and why do we need it?

Ad tech encompasses various technologies and tools for advertisers, agencies, publishers, and other industry marketers to plan and manage their digital advertising efforts and monetization strategies. Ad tech technology is used to optimize and automate digital advertising campaigns. It is an umbrella term that stands for advertising technology. This includes everything from ad networks and demand-side platforms (DSPs) to data management platforms (DMPs) and ad verification solutions.

Evolution of the Ad Tech Industry

Evolution of the Ad Tech Industry

Without adtech, programmatic advertising wouldn’t exist. Ad Tech enables the delivery of highly targeted ads, implementing omnichannel marketing strategies among other techniques. 

Why Do You Need Ad Tech?

To understand why we need adtech let’s think about how advertising was done years before the ad tech industry was born.

Before the advent of ad tech, media buying, and advertising was a manual, complex process that required a lot of time and effort. Then, in the ’90s, e-commerce exploded, and both advertising and media agencies found themselves helping to select websites for their client’s ads. 

This involved researching, checking metrics, and choosing which website would bring the maximum ROI for advertisers.

Adverts were published to reach as large an audience as possible without almost no personalization. While you can create brand awareness by striving for a massive reach. iThis type of general ad is less relevant for individual viewers.

Adtech was introduced to make it possible to deliver advertisements to the most relevant audiences, at the right time and in the right context, thus the programmatic ecosystem was born Marketers then save time, money, and effort. Publishers, on the other side, can monetize their digital assets while giving end-users the most relevant offer for their queries.

Here are some highlights of the process:

Purple Professional Gradient Timeline Infographic

Ad Tech Ecosystem

Advertising technology analyzes, manages, and delivers advertisements according to the requirements of the advertiser and target audience. Campaigns look to maximize the effect of ads, ultimately increasing ad revenue.

How Does Ad Tech Work?

Ad tech works by leveraging data and technology to optimize and automate the digital advertising process. It works through a complex ecosystem of players, including advertisers, publishers, ad networks, DSPs, SSPs, DMPs, and more. Here’s a brief overview of how it works:

Who are the Key Players in Ad Tech?

The ad tech ecosystem consists of Advertisers, publishers, demand-side platforms, ad exchanges, ad networks, supply-side platforms and demand-side platforms.

In short:

1. Advertisers: Companies that want to advertise their products or services. They use a DSP to access multiple ad exchanges where they can bid on ad inventory in real-time

2. Publishers: Companies that own and operate websites, apps, or other digital properties where ads can be displayed. Publishers use supply-side platforms (SSPs) to manage and sell their ad space to advertisers.

3. Ad networks: Intermediaries between advertisers and publishers, offering access to multiple publishers’ inventory.

4. Demand-side platforms (DSPs): Platforms used by advertisers to access multiple ad exchanges and bid on ad inventory in real-time.

5. Supply-side platforms (SSPs): Platforms used by publishers to manage and sell their ad inventory to advertisers.

6. Data management platforms (DMPs): DMPs collect and analyze data to create audience segments that advertisers can target with their ads.

7. Ad verification solutions: These solutions ensure that ads are delivered in a brand-safe and fraud-free environment.

Elements of the Ad Technology Ecosystem

Publishers (The Supply side)

Publishers make their impressions and ad space available through supply-side platforms and ad networks at ad exchanges. Demand-side platforms bid on those ads through real-time bidding, selecting the most relevant ad types and placements for the target audience. Thanks to adtech, this supply-demand loop takes place in seconds, in the time that takes a page to load.

Advertisers (The Demand side)

Advertisers are one of the key players in the ad tech industry. They are companies that want to promote their products or services through digital advertising channels. Advertisers can range from small businesses to large corporations, and they often work with ad tech companies or ad agencies, or marketing firms to help them create and execute their digital advertising campaigns.

Adtech Ecosystem

Ad Exchange

Image credit: Nagle

Ad network

Ad networks are programmatic advertising services that collect inventory from publishers into a platform where advertisers can bid for ad impressions. It simplifies the process of buying and selling ad inventory.

The networks gather the inventory of a large number of publishers based on a programmatic auction. Advertisers, on their side, can set campaigns directly through ad networks, choosing criteria for the campaigns, such as budget and target audience.

Want to learn more about Ad Networks? Check our What’s an Ad Network Glossary Page 

Ad exchange

An ad exchange is a platform that connects advertisers and publishers, and helps them buy and sell ad space in real-time. It acts as a marketplace where publishers can sell their ad space and advertisers can bid on that space.

Publishers and advertisers don’t usually have access to the information shared in the ad exchange. However, in the ad exchange, publishers list the ad space they have available, along with details about the audience they reach and the price they are asking for ad spaces. Advertisers then bid on that ad space and the ad exchange matches the highest bidder with the ad space. The winning ad is displayed on the publisher’s website. This process happens in real-time, meaning that it can take place in just a few milliseconds.

Overall, ad exchanges make it easier for advertisers to reach their target audiences by giving them access to a wide range of publishers and ad inventory, while also helping publishers to monetize their content by selling their ad space more efficiently. Ad tech solution providers use ad exchanges to connect demand-side platforms (DSPs) with supply-side platforms (SSPs)

Ad Exchange

Content delivery network

A CDN is a network of servers deployed in multiple data centers at different locations around the world. The goal of a content delivery network is to serve content to end users with minimal latency and load times. CDNS are used in adtech to host ads so they are served to users from the closest server, minimizing the time to load the ads.

CDNs are used to load heavy web pages assets, like images and videos. The networks also cache content so web hosts can load assets faster.

Content delivery network

Image source

Ad server

These were among the first ad tech developments used to host and store ads, then serve them on the publisher’s website. Nowadays, ad servers are full ad tech platforms for launching and managing ad campaigns and connecting publishers and advertisers.

Ad servers also collect data on ad performance to optimize campaigns. This technology is what makes it possible for media buying automation.

Programmatic Advertising

Programmatic advertising is an ad tech term that refers to the use of technology solutions to buy and sell digital ads. The platforms automate the purchasing process for digital ad inventory from publishers across the web. It also uses machine learning to serve targeted ads based on demographics, location, and behavior.

Targeted Advertising

Targeted advertising is a way of digital advertising that focuses on delivering ads according to the specific traits, interests, and intent of a consumer. For example, let’s say you are looking for coffee makers online on Amazon. Amazon tracks your activity with a cookie. Later, when you are reading an article on a web blog, programmatic advertising platforms read the cookie and serve you ads related to your Amazon visit, like coffee pods.

The advantage of targeted ads is that they show you ads about things you are already interested.

Agency Trading Desk (ATD)

Is a set of tools used by media agencies to plan, buy and manage advertising. Organizations that are not yet ready to install a DSP or justify an in-house team use ATD services. The downside of using an agency trading desk is that advertisers don’t have direct access to the inventory.

Demand-side Platform (DSP)

Is a platform that allows users to buy inventory from various ad exchanges and supply-side platforms (SSP). Unlike an ad server, with a DSP advertisers don’t need to negotiate prices with publishers. They set their CPM (Cost per Mille), target preferences, and can launch the campaign. A DSP also lets you set bidding rules, and optimization tools that help run your media buying without having to be on top of it.

Supply-side Platform (SSP)

Is the publisher’s side of a DSP. This ad software enables publishers to make available, manage, sell and optimize inventory on their websites and applications. SSP also works based on real-time bidding. That means you don’t need to negotiate rates with advertisers. You only need to embed an ad tag and or a header to the website, which will allow the browser to request an ad for that place in the website. The tag is forwarded to the SSP, which automatically selects a suitable ad from the DSP according to the publisher’s data.

Data Management Platform (DMP)

A data management platform enables advertisers to understand in-depth about their audience’s behavior. The DMP collects data from different sources, hashtags, mobile apps, cookies, APIs, etc. The platform uses third-party cookies to define the user profile and develop behavioral targeting in a DSP or ad server.

Customer Data Platform (CDP)

Customer Data Platforms go a bit further than DMP. Not only collects third-party data but also personally identifiable information (PII). Thus a CDP can create a complete profile with a name, company email and other data, gathered under consent, from analytics tools, Customer Relation Management tools, subscriptions, newsletter signups, transactional systems, etc. This technology will probably be very popular once third-party cookies are phased out by Google in 2022.

The role of user data

This loop of supply and demand generates revenue thanks to a key component: user data.

Understanding the user behavior and activity on a particular platform is the core of the effectiveness of programmatic advertising. User data is what makes it possible, via sophisticated software algorithms, to deliver the right ad to the right person at the right time.

You can buy user data or you can gather it on your own. But, the goal is to gather actual data from actual people (behaviors, interests, attitudes, and attributes) to be accurate in your targeting. The more you can refine ad targeting to the user, the better your bottom line will look. Why? Because the more the user relates to the ad, the more inclined they will be to click on it. That’s simple.

For publishers, the more your website, application, or extension marketing efforts apply to your target audience, the higher the value of your digital real estate for advertisers.

Inventory and Ad Quality Scanning Tools

Ad Quality Scanning Tools

Image source

These tools are critical to prevent ad fraud, which affects around 37% of ads. Inventory and ad quality scanning tools help prevent traffic bots, malvertising, and ad fraud by scanning the ads before being served on the website.

The Ad Tech Solutions of CodeFuel

CodeFuel is an adtech company dedicated to providing monetization solutions for publishers and app developers. Our solutions include:

Search Mediation

CodeFuel offers optimized landing pages that maximize revenue for publishers. Regardless of the platform you buy your media, our solution can help you increase your revenue. The monetization page is fully tailored for your business needs and the buying platform you use.

Media traders then can monetize search and achieve higher revenue by leveraging the mediation platform.

Website monetization

CodeFuel monetization solutions are designed to transform intent into revenue.

The user-intent based search enables you to monetize your website with contextual ads. By matching the audience’s intent to the right ad, you enhance the user experience and earn a higher revenue.

Search queries
Search queries give a customized search results page (SERP), hosted on your website, with paid text ads, optimized by search technology.

Shopping ads
When you sign up your website with CodeFuel, your users are served shopping fuel ads related to their intent. For example, when a user clicks on an ad for a new cell phone, the system directs them to a results page with relevant ads for this specific cellphone model.

News feed

You can also add a news feed to your website. Powered by MSN, it includes over a thousand premium news publishers. This increases your user’s engagement, by encouraging users to have a longer dwell time in your site. Ultimately, this translates into more conversions.

App Monetization

CodeFuel uses intent-based search to monetize your mobile app or browser extension. Add  search capabilities to your application, which returns a customized SERP with relevant text and shopping ads.

Key features of CodeFuel solutions

  • Simple integration: easy installation and integration with search engines and ad networks.
  • HUB Analytics: get the information you need to improve your performance with the analytics hub.
  • End to End Support: complete account management with strong business intelligence.

Advertising Technology for advertisers

Advertisers conform to the demand side of the advertising technology. Solutions geared for them aim to reach the target audience in the most efficient way and for the lowest possible price. These solutions help advertisers to run and optimize personalized programmatic campaigns, targeting and retargeting potential customers.

The advertiser’s ad tech stack may comprise some or all these types of tools:

  • A remarketing/ retargeting tool 

The fast pace of digital communications and the short attention span of customers means that sometimes a consumer will have interest in an ad but not follow through. Later, the consumer cannot find the ad or recall the name of the company (didn’t happen to us all?). Therefore, retargeting is essential for marketers to push consumers down the funnel.

  • Prospecting tools 

Expanding their customer base is a priority for most companies. Thus, machine-learning-powered prospecting tools help companies find their target audience in ad networks and ad exchanges. The more marketers use the tool, the more the system learns and refine the prospecting process.

  • Data management platforms

As we mentioned above, leveraging user data is a basic concept of programmatic advertising. Gathering, processing, and analyzing consumer behavior and transactional information makes it possible for companies to pinpoint the ads to the users to the dot.

  • Demand side platforms

This is the advertising technology that facilitates finding, bidding, and placing the ads at the right placement automatically. The system works automatically, serving the ads according to relevance for the end-user, the budget, and the criteria specified by the advertiser. Some of the top demand-side platforms are:

  • Facebook
  • Rocket Fuel
  • Amazon
  • AppNexus

Advertising Technology for publishers

Ad tech for publishers aims to achieve the highest price for the ad placement or impression from the most relevant buyers.

The right supply-side platform, like CodeFuel, can maximize the revenue of your digital property, whether is a website, an application, or an extension by delivering the most relevant ads to high intent users. It uses contextualization and intent-based advertising technology to ensure the right ad gets to the user most likely to click on it.

This enhances the user experience, increasing the value of the website or app for advertisers, thus ensuring higher bids.

Buying ad space with ad tech

Advertisers can automate their media buying with the help of ad tech solutions such as demand side platforms (DSPs) and ad networks. They can reach their target audience by buying the ad space on the sites they visit, and according to the user interests.

Marketers can set their criteria for buying ad space, in categories like location, target audience, and demographics. Programmatic advertising solutions also allow marketers to review and test the performance of the campaign, gathering information about impressions, conversions, and click-through rates, thus effectively optimizing their campaigns.

Demand-side platforms usually offer buyers different types of deals, including automated real-time bidding, private marketplaces or direct one-to-one deals. Learn more about demand-side platforms in our What’s a Demand-Side Platform? Guide. 

Selling ad space with Adtech’

AdTech solutions are also beneficial for publishers and the supply side. Supply-side platforms collect unused inventory from publishers and offer it in a programmatic auction to the highest bidder. Publishers can then fill their inventory in real-time, and maximize their revenue. CodeFuel goes a step further from supply-side platforms offering complete monetization solutions for digital properties.

Learn more about supply-side platforms in our What’s a Supply-Side Platform (SSP)? Guide

How Ad Tech Simplifies Media Trading

Without the ad tech companies, programmatic advertising wouldn’t exist. By automating the media trading process it takes the negotiation out of the hands of publishers and buyers, simplifying the process. Ad tech enables advertisers to bid on the most relevant ad placements for their campaign without having to check site by site. Simply input the requirements and budget and the platform will find, bid, and acquire the best ad placements at the best possible price, then serving the ads immediately.

On the supply side, ad tech helps publishers to sell ad space without having to find and negotiate with advertisers. It also makes it possible to sell impressions and inventory in seconds. Thus, ad tech is taking the hassle out of media trading.

What are the benefits of AdTech?

AdTech revolutionized the way we sell and buy ad space. The solutions simplify and improve digital ad campaigns, with benefits for the supplier, the advertiser, and the user. Because most popular Ad Tech solutions use machine learning, the technology will continue to get better and optimize the campaigns.

It optimizes ad spending by helping advertisers and agencies deliver the right content, at the right time, to the right audiences. Ad tech also delivers operational efficiencies for campaigns: adtech allows marketers to plan and manage campaigns more efficiently.

The current trends in the Ad Tech Industry

Where is Ad Tech going in the next few years? The industry has grown by leaps and bounds over the last 20 years and is not willing to stop evolving. Here are the top trends that are shaping the ad tech industry:

1. Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning

These two technologies help advertisers analyze massive amounts of user data, incorporating behavior analysis to predict the actions of a user online. This data is processed and correlated to serve the right ad according to the user intent at this moment.

2. Post cookies optimization

Google’s phasing out third-party cookies by 2022 is causing major upheaval in the programmatic industry. Some markets report significant drops in buyer’s bid rates as a consequence. In Germany, buyer’s bid rates decreased by 40%.

Companies are trying to find a viable user identity alternative that doesn’t affect them so much. Some alternatives may include storing data without using cookies by opt-in forms, universal ids, data pools, among others.

3. Programmatic everything

When Netflix and Amazon Prime changed the way we consume multimedia content from cable to digital, advertisers needed to transition with them. Now, programmatic advertising is making its way to television, audio, and podcasts to take advantage of the power of data for this segment of the market.

Ad Tech or MarTech?

While often confused, ad tech and mar-tech are two different industries. Is true, they intersect in some features and functions, but each one has a different approach. Putting it simply is the same difference between marketing and advertising.

Advertising implies using paid media and content for promoting products and services. Marketing is a more broad approach to promotion, and inside the marketing mix of activities is advertising.

Use cases
Ad Tech
Paid ad campaigns
Display ads, video ads, PPC, social media ads, CTV
Simplify media trading, optimize monetization revenue
Media buyers, ad agencies, website owners, app developers, networks
Paid and unpaid promotion methods
Social media, email, direct sales, content marketing, video marketing, conversational marketing
Facilitate and automate marketing strategy implementation
Marketing teams, freelance marketers, sales teams

Make the most of your media trading with CodeFuel

CodeFuel ML and AI capabilities facilitate media buying while improving the revenue for publishers. Getting the right monetization solution is critical for success. Leverage user intent in your digital property by using search, shopping and news to engage users and improve their experience, serving them ads matched precisely with their queries.

Programmatic Media Buying & Media Trading – All You Need to Know Today

Programmatic Media Buying & Media Trading – All You Need to Know Today

What is Programmatic Media Trading?

Definition: Programmatic media buying is an automated method of buying and selling digital advertising according to the decisions on a per-impression basis by supply and demand parties and in accordance with the rules of the exchange platform.

Put it simply, programmatic media trading is the buying of digital advertising space in real-time via an automated auction (real-time bidding). Sites that want to sell advertising space through this type of auction typically offer the inventory through a marketplace or ad exchange.

This method allows advertisers to reach the audiences they want, based on the value of the impression. On the supply side, it allows publishers to get higher-paying advertisers, since the higher the demand for your site audience, the higher the price for the impression.

Programmatic Media Trading

Source: Google

Programmatic mechanics 101

Programmatic media trading uses automated platforms to simplify the buying/selling process according to a predefined budget. Advertisers connect to an ad exchange placing offers using their set budget. The ad exchange connects to ad networks which then choose ad spaces that meet the target market, size, and budget of the advertiser.

Programmatic trading offers advertisers better targeting for their campaigns. It also improves the quality of advertisers publishers may get on their sites. The automated technology uses data management and algorithms to select the right ad to serve the right user at the right time and price.

To understand programmatic media buying, you first need to know key concepts related to this process.

There are three categories of programmatic media buying:

Real-time bidding (RTB)

In this method, inventory prices are decided through a real-time auction. Any advertiser or publisher can access it. Ad exchanges and supply-side platforms often provide the framework for this auction.

How does it work? Ad exchanges collect information about the page and the user viewing it every time an ad impression appears in a user’s web browser. The ad exchange auctions the impression off to the advertiser that is willing to pay the highest price for it.

Private marketplace (PMP)

These auctions have restrictions on who can participate. Often they select advertisers on an invite-only basis. In other cases, publishers may have an interview and selection process so advertisers can apply to enter the PMP.

Programmatic direct

In this case, a publisher sells media inventory directly at a fixed cost per mille (CPM – cost per impression) to advertisers.

Programmatic advertisements have three components: the supplier side, the demand side, and the exchange platform (more about this below)

What is the role of a programmatic media trader?

A media trader is the professional that spends the assigned digital budget within the RTB environments. A media trader needs to know where is best to buy inventory for an advertiser, meeting the campaign goals and ROI.

Media traders maximize the advertiser’s digital budgets aligning them with the business goals. They create real-time bidding and paid search strategies, implementing this in digital media buying platforms, to ensure the advertiser’s goals are met.

A media trader has four key responsibilities when executing an RTB campaign:

  • Know the market: media traders need to understand the market in which the impressions are happening. They define the strategy they will use, retargeting, prospecting, contextual targeting, and more.
  • Oversee ad operations: this is the technical side of launching ads, including the restrictions on the placement of the ads and managing attribution.
  • Trading: this involves managing a campaign, purchasing the ads, checking the reports, and making changes to the targeting. Is the responsibility of the trader to ensure the best possible outcome, achieving the highest possible ROI from the ad campaign.
  • Reporting: the media trader pulls all the reporting from the platform analytics and provides insights on the key drivers of that performance.

How does a media trading desk work?

A media trading desk can be a service provided by an agency or a software solution. The service or solution provides planning, management, and optimization of programmatic advertising campaigns. 

Advertisers benefit from an agency trading desk (ATD) that enables them to buy media for less than managing a campaign in-house. At first, you may think that ATD is similar to a demand-side platform (DSP). However, an agency trading desk offers the added value of programmatic advertising professionals on top.

ATDs provide the expertise of software developers, account managers, and data analysts that optimize the media buying for the agency’s campaign. ATDs work between the advertiser and the supply and demand platforms, and networks to purchase media. In this sense, they work similarly to AdTech platforms. They provide added services that regular demand or supply platforms don’t give to their clients like:

  • Planning
  • Campaign launching and optimization
  • Reporting and analytics

The State of Programmatic Advertising in 2021 ( Statistics)

Digital advertising has been changing in the last years driven by automation and innovative solutions that benefit both publishers and advertisers. Here are top statistics you need to know about the state of programmatic advertising in 2021:

Global programmatic ad spend will reach 155 billion in 2021

Global Programmatic Ad Spend

Global ad spending 2017 to 2021 (Statista)

Programmatic ad spending is projected to grow 20% in 2021. 

The percentage of growth is also seeing a rising trend. Companies are expected to spend 20% more on programmatic advertising in 2021 than in 2020.

And the rising trend will grow well into 2023, according to a study by an e-marketer.

In fact, programmatic display ad spending is growing more than non-programmatic display ads. 

Programmatic Display Ad Spending


More statistics

  • The average cost per action (CPA) is $49 for paid search and $75 for display ads.
  • The US social media ad spends reached $43 billion in 2020. This was a 20% increase from 2019. (Source: eMarketer)
  • Marketers use ineffective strategies: Only 61% of marketers believe their marketing strategy is effective.
  • 40% of marketers consider that proving the ROI of the marketing efforts is a challenge.

Programmatic Advertising Trends

The pandemic affected programmatic advertising, but as was reported by MediaRadar in September, the numbers were bouncing back. There was a 36% growth in July 2021 from 2020 levels, which puts the market at pre-pandemic levels.

What’s next for programmatic advertising? Here are some trends to look for:

  • Avoiding “heavy ads” 

In August 2020, Google implemented a feature on Chrome that blocks “heavy ads” to improve the user experience. Any ad that Google considers as heavy is removed and replaced with a label that says: “ad removed”

What’s a heavy ad?

  • It has more than 4MB of network data usage
  • Uses the main thread for 60 seconds in total
  • Uses 15 seconds of CPU in a 30 seconds window

This means companies will need to optimize video ads to prevent being labeled as heavy ads.

  • Planning for Post Third Party Cookies (P3PC)

Third-party cookies are being phased out on Chrome by 2022 and are going to change the way companies carry programmatic advertising. Organizations need to prepare for 2022 when they can no longer use 3PC. That means they need to take a multi-layered approach to advertise.

  • Programmatic advertising spending will continue rising

The 2020 IAB Europe reports that companies will keep raising their budgets for programmatic advertising. Here are some of the reasons:

  • The number of companies investing more than 41% of their display budget into programmatic advertising grew to 70% in 2020.
  • 54% of advertising agencies buy almost half of their video ads programmatically.
  • Publishers report they are selling 81% of their inventory.
  • Adoption of emerging formats

New formats like connected TV (CTV) and Digital out-of-home media are slowly taking off. CTV in particular offers an opportunity for programmatic advertising. It allows advertisers to reach two different audience types at the same time. The people that want to watch TV on their timeframe and people that avoid linear TV.

What about Digital Media Trading Platforms? How do they work?

Technology is changing the way companies buy and sell digital advertising space. What once was done by human buyers, and advertising salespeople now is done through technology trading platforms.

How do they work? The media trading ecosystem consists of three key actors: demand-side platforms, supply-side platforms, and the ad exchange where they interact. Let’s explore how each one works:

Demand Side Platforms (DSP)

Demand-side platforms enable advertisers to buy impressions from publisher sites, targeted to their audience.  Publishers put their ad impressions for sale on ad exchanges. The DSP selects the right impressions for the advertiser in a real-time auction through real-time bidding.

How does this work?

The advertiser inputs the target audience preference and budget into the DSP. Then, the platform places programmatic bids using artificial intelligence (AI). The auctions take place in seconds and the highest bid ad is the one that appears on the page. The entire process happens automatically, without human intervention.

Best demand-side platforms

Some of the most popular demand-side platforms are well-known digital giants, others act independently of the media channel they run.

  • Facebook Ads Manager: they provide the buying platform and the biddable ad space. The ads manager enables advertisers to create, edit, manage, track and analyze campaigns from one place.
  • Rocket Fuel: is a self-service DSP, allowing companies to bring programmatic marketing in-house. The platform uses predictive AI to serve real-time ads relevant to the customer profile.
  • Amazon: Amazon Advertising Platform (AAP) uses the amazon algorithm to serve ads in real-time, leveraging precisely targeted campaigns for relevant customers. The downside is that users (advertisers/publishers) don’t get much information about conversion rates or click-through rates.
  • MediaMath: is an independent programmatic company for advertisers. One of its advantages, MediaMath can have full access to their data.

Supply-side platforms

A supply-side platform is a software solution geared to help online publishers sell their display, video, or mobile ad impressions. It works as the publisher-side of a demand-side platform. SSPs are designed to maximize the prices of impressions for publishers.

How does it work?

It allows publishers to connect their inventory to several ad exchanges, DSPs, and ad networks. Thus expanding the range of potential buyers for ad space. Real-time bidding helps publishers to get the highest possible rates. The SSP inputs impressions into ad exchanges, where a DSP analyzes and purchases them. The process, although looking complicated, happens in real-time in the time a page takes to load.

Best supply-side platforms

  • MoPub: is a hosted ad serving solution built specifically for mobile publishers.
  • Google Ad Manager: formerly Double Click for Publishers, works as an ad revenue engine that connects with the Google Ad Exchange. The downside is that it is locked to Google products.
  • Sharethrough:  is an omnichannel supply-side platform for programmatic advertising, geared to publishers, content creators, and app developers.
  • AppNexus: this is an independent programmatic marketplace, with the advantage of accessing data and managing the advertising offerings.

What are Ad exchanges?

Is a digital marketplace that connects advertisers and publishers to buy and sell advertising space through real-time auctions. They are used to sell display, video, and mobile ad inventory.

Best ad exchanges

PubMatic: it offers an easy-to-use interface and advanced advertising features like open-source header bidding.

Verizon Media: the company offers a large range of advertisers, serving over 2 billion ad impressions daily. Provides header bidding, programmatic direct selling, and management tools.

Google Adx: uses both open-auction and private-auction bidding models. The downside is that it has a high barrier of entry

Ad exchange vs ad network

Ad network

What’s an ad network?: is an intermediary that collects inventory from publishers and sells it to advertisers.

How does it work? Ad networks are organizations that collect, curate and sell publisher’s ad inventories. They charge a commission for the intervention, and the inventories are sold in bulk.

Ad exchange

What’s an ad exchange?: is a digital marketplace where advertisers and publishers buy and sell ad inventory directly.

 How does it work?

An ad exchange is a platform that gives an environment for advertisers, agencies, DSP, publishers, and SSP, to buy and sell media in a transparent way, in real-time.

Ad Network Ad Exchange
Type Company services Technological platform
Target Users Agencies, advertisers, and publishers Agencies, Advertisers, DSP, SSP, publishers
Optimization speed Takes time to change Changes in real-time
Transparency Advertisers don’t know where the ads are served. Publishers don’t have information about the buyer Both parties have information on the transaction
Inventory Offers a premium inventory to advertisers Offers remaining inventory.
Pricing Depends on negotiation According to the bids placed
Pros Publishers can sell at a premium price because they set the price. The price is set automatically according to the bidding process.
Cons There is little transparency about where the ad is served and who is the buyer. Publishers may not get a premium price for their inventory.

Tips to Increase your Ad Revenue

Publishers need to develop a programmatic ad strategy that aligns with the overall sales strategy. The most important point is ensuring the quality of the inventory so it doesn’t get categorized as remnant inventory.

Publishers can follow some tips to increase the advertising revenue of a website. Let’s review a couple of them:

CPM advertising

In Cost-Per-Mille advertising, you get paid per thousand impressions of an ad. Publishers can use this method to set the prices they want to get for their ad impressions. This method works best when you have high traffic and a targeted audience.

PPC Advertising

Another popular method is Pay-Per-Click. With PPC ads, you get paid every time a user clicks on an ad served on your site. You can increase your revenue as a publisher with PPC by using an ad network like CodeFuel. An ad network will give you the control and information to maximize the revenue for the ads on your website.

Join affiliate marketing

You can also advertise and promote products for third parties on your website. You get paid every time a customer clicks on the link or makes a purchase through your site. This method can be combined with other advertising methods.

If you want to know more about ad revenue, check Ad Revenue: What Is and How to Increase it?  

Maximize your ad revenue with CodeFuel

Codefuel is a complete monetization platform that enables publishers to maximize their ad revenue through intent-based ads.

CodeFuel ad network enables publishers to generate higher revenue with text, display, and search ads. Tap into the broad reach of. premium search vendors while enriching the user experience. The CodeFuel Hub enables publishers to manage and optimize traffic with real-time data enhancing the value of their impressions. Learn more about how to increase your ad revenue with CodeFuel by contacting us. 

What is The Future of Media Trading

In its beginnings, media trading was conducted almost entirely on a managed basis. Later, vendors implemented self-serving platforms. The issue with programmatic advertising tools is that in reality, the user needs to choose their target audience, the budget, and other aspects of ad campaign optimization. With marketers using over 30 tools regularly, this can be a hassle and lead to inefficiencies.

New media platforms need to address several challenges:

User experience is king: Enhancing the user experience is key for a successful interaction between publishers and advertisers.

Mobile friendly: users need to manage the media platform across devices.

Transparency and clear information: buyers and suppliers need clear information about what is happening with the real-time bidding.  Buyers need to know where the ads will appear to optimize the campaign.

More Business Intelligence: new platforms use AI to target the audiences at the end-user level. The software will understand the target user’s intent, behavior, and preferences.

Final Thoughts

Publishers and advertisers cannot go blind when using media trading platforms. Programmatic platforms must provide a high-targeted user experience while maximizing revenue through transparency.