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How to Get the Most from Private Marketplaces (PMPs) in the In-App Space?

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By Joe Lige, VP, Mobile
April 3, 2019

Private Marketplaces (PMPs) were traditionally designed to carve out sections of programmatic ad inventory and offer it to buyers at a higher priority. This seemed like the perfect solution to buyers’ programmatic concerns and they allowed for quality inventory to be offered before it became available in open marketplaces.

With the advent of greater inventory controls, such as ads.txt, marketers have become less worried about the availability of quality inventory in exchanges. However, this certainty has not yet taken hold in the in-app space.  Therefore, in-app PMPs continue to offer the best solution for advertisers to transact on brand safe in-app inventory.

The original values PMPs offer still ring true for inventory:

  • Publishers have control over who buys their inventory and the minimum price
  • Marketers have visibility into and control over which publisher sites their company’s ads will appear on before the ad goes live
  • Both sides benefit from the increased focus and investment that companies like PubMatic have brought to increase trust, quality and pre-purchase viewability (for desktop)

Growth of In-App PMP Impression Volume

PubMatic’s Q4 2018 QMI report shows in-app PMP impression volume grew more than 75 percent YOY in 2018 to address quality concerns. If app developers want to access these reserved PMP budgets, they should consider three main questions:

  • How are audiences segmented and created?
  • How are PMP deals prioritized inside the ad server?
  • Which PMP partner or platform should you work with?

Segmenting and Creating Audiences

With marketers spending more budgets on quality in-app programmatic inventory, packaging inventory for easy-access is a great way to increase overall yield. PMP inventory can be segmented based on several variables, such as demographic data, content type, viewability and other impression data to create audiences. Depending on the platform or partner you work with to create these audiences, the how-to will vary but you should still carefully consider the ideal audience segmentation.

Once audiences are created, it’s easy to match the audience with advertiser campaigns and capture more high-value ad spend allocated for PMPs.  According to a recent Forrester Consulting study, commissioned by PubMatic, “30 percent of firms expect programmatic direct in-app budgets to increase by more than 6 percent over the next 12 months, and another 62 percent expect to see between a 1 percent and 5 percent increase in that same time period.” It is clear advertisers are looking for brand safe environments which can be easily accessed and tracked for ROI. Segment accordingly.

PMP Prioritization in Your Ad Server

In-app PMPs not only help segment inventory into attractive contextual audiences but they also highlight the unique value to buyers. Typically, PMP inventory can demand higher CPMs and marketers are willing to pay for it. Therefore, developers need to make sure that these in-app PMPs are prioritized in their ad severs.

Prioritization allows marketers to get a first look at the inventory and the opportunity to buy at a premium rate, before it becomes available in the open market. When a publisher does not have enough of a particular audience a buyer might be looking for, they can also participate in always-on PMPs that group similar apps based on comparable audiences.

Selecting the Right PMP Platform & Partner

Buyers have preferred PMP platforms that they tend to spend a majority of their ad budgets with. Therefore, it is highly advised to select a PMP partner who has connections to the widest variety of DSPs, trading desks and buyers. The buyer may be looking for a particular data set to target and app developers have an advantage because their proprietary data is richer than cookie-based environments.

App developers who understand the unique value of their data can offer it to the broadest audience and net the largest return. PMP providers, such as PubMatic, offer connections to the majority of global buyers. This also includes intuitive user interfaces which allow publishers and app developers to segment and monetize their audience at scale. To learn more about our offerings, check out our PMP solutions or contact us.