What are the latest trends for programmatic advertising in 2022?

Łukasz Pośpiech

Online marketing has come a long way since it debuted in the mid-nineties. With a few generations of the Internet emerging in the meantime, pretty much every aspect of the Web has been remodeled. And in 2022 the evolution continues.

But really, what does it have to do with programmatic advertising?

There are a lot of answers, as more and more options for advertisers emerge. Let’s look into them so that we’re prepared for whatever changes await. One thing is sure – Bob Dylan was right, and ‘the Times are indeed A-Changin’.

The scale of advertising and abundance of data insights propelled work on sustainable and effective systems that would allow marketers to effectively bid for ads. But those solutions are also changing and evolving.

What do the numbers tell us? Programmatic ad spending

With programmatic ad spending rising year on year, you can be certain that 2022 will bring even more chances for brands and marketers to broaden their range of advertising efforts and increase their online presence, too.

Statista estimated that in 2021 global programmatic ad spend reached a whopping margin of $150 billion, which would be an increase of more than 16% when compared to the previous year.

On top of that, as we’re still in the first quarter of 2022, the reports are optimistic again. Contextual targeting is supposed to receive more attention, and U.S. citizens will become even more interested in those trusted and effective online advertising formats.

This means a few things for the market – higher digital ad spend, more audiences, more quality media buyers, and a generally beneficial environment. To boast, marketing professionals will of course need a comfy space where they can increase their ad investments.

The Programmatic campaigns have never been more important

In the WEB 3.0 era, programmatic advertising took over and just proved how powerful and efficient digital advertising has become. In times dominated by intelligent software and services, could there be a better representative of the movement than a needlepoint-accurate advertising tool?

With the vast development of online marketing and new verticals available for affiliates, the meticulous, yet seemingly flawless instruments have become the driving force behind a new, sufficient era of marketing. Programmatic trends have been changing over the years, and we’re not expecting the process to stop.

So let’s dive a bit deeper into what the latest trends have brought to the marketing table.

As the months go by, there will surely be new challenges and ideas coming. However, the changes will not be rapid, and staying up-to-date should not be troublesome for those marketers who follow the trends.

Targeting gets you better results

An experienced marketer will notice what brings the best results. Targeting allows you to reach relevant users, waste less of your budget, and just use ad space more effectively.

But to elevate efficiency, why would one want to reach everybody when they can select only the perfect candidates? With a thorough analysis of users, it’s possible to evaluate which campaigns are a good fit, and which aren’t. Optimizing the campaigns always helps, and narrowing them should get you better results. Fortunately, Demand-Side Platforms (DSPs) allow their users to do all of those things.

Let’s put it that way, if you decide on a broad RON (Run-of-Network) campaign, you’ll most likely receive detailed intel about what fixings are most effective. Use this technique to test the waters before you know exactly how to target your campaign.

Stay open to what the ad tech brings

We’re still yet to find out, but it looks like CTV (Connected TV) will continue its vast 2021 growth. Of course, the pandemic influenced it, as people had more time to spend watching things from home. And as there is a platform, there is of course a possibility to have programmatic CTV implemented.

The programmatic penetration of Connected TV (CTV) marketing reached 70% in 2021 (as eMarketer suggests), and the forecasts claim that in two years it will rise by 8 percentage points.

The same goes for programmatic audio ad solutions, and this course should not be peculiar to anyone who noticed the rise in the popularity of podcasts and audio online streaming services. The possibilities rose, so of course, the process of implementing programmatic methods has already started.

Advertisers are noticing that and certainly, in the future, they will use those even more extensively. But…

… trusted ad-tech tools are your go-to solutions

There is no need to panic, and there is no need to change strategies. Programmatic ads (for example search ads) are doing just great. The changing world imposes some adjustments and evolution, which of course propel further works. So, no worries, the future looks bright!

The fast-paced world needs services that are adjustable to any condition. Therefore, whatever happens, all forms of programmatic advertising will keep an upward trajectory.

Third-party data shall be ceased in the new, cookieless world

As the evolution of our tech solutions progresses, companies cannot rest on their laurels. In the past years, we have been witnessing a major rise in concerns about online privacy, and the traditional system of programmatic advertising had to adjust to the new reality, too. Of course, the pace of change differs, but the tendency is clear.

Privacy issues have become such a pressing topic that even the giants had to adjust their policies and tech to stay relevant. Further growth will only be possible if we all follow trends in marketing, as well as listen to the policymakers.

Do not take candy from strangers… the downfall of third-party cookies in 2022

Although their name is tasty, some Internet users do not enjoy cookies that much. Third-party cookies have been playing a lead role in online advertising for so long, that it was decided, that they must cease to exist.

In case you were not aware of that (a huge mistake), cookies are small data pieces, that are being processed (among others) by advertising companies. They show one’s activity, interactions, and preferences when using the Internet.

On one hand, it allowed advertisers to receive third-party details about their potential customers, while on the other, the users themselves have been more than worried about not having control over it.

The concerns have of course been presented to the officials, and as the EU’s example shows us, it started to bear fruit. The European Union implemented a series of new regulations regarding privacy and data processing in 2018, with GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) being their heaviest weapon.

But the changes pertain to everybody, and programmatic advertising also had to rid of unwanted third-party cookies.

First-party data is much safer

Flexibility and adaptability have always been crucial for affiliate marketers, and this has not changed. A new environment does not mean that programmatic advertising has become impossible to proceed with.

Humanity has always been excelling, so this is nothing too surprising. The key question is, ‘can we adjust to the new tides?’ If the answer to that is ‘yes, with pleasure’, then we can only await better solutions and bigger successes.

Programmatic advertising is becoming more transparent, more privacy-focused, and shaped exactly like the publicity and the officials expect it to be. Users’ consent has become more than valuable, and the environment encourages them to push even further.

By relying on first-party data processing from the get-go, Zeropark has always been compliant with the new cookieless reality that awaits in 2022 and the years to come. The first-party-based, safe media and advertising is something that the tool has always been able to offer to advertisers and brands.

The new identity solutions are focused on giving the consumer as much control and safety as possible so that everybody can feel more secure online.

Wearables and DOOH in programmatic advertising in 2022

As we have already established, tomorrow holds exciting challenges for the programmatic advertising world. New tech is being more present in the market, and the new devices enable marketing professionals to discover new opportunities.

Wearables become better and better

Better screens, actually readable notifications, improved connection, and user-friendly features have encouraged more and more people to buy wearables. Different gadgets, most usually in a watch form, have become another device type that we commonly use.

Why not use those for advertising purposes? With a view that things will only get better, the vast development of programmatic solutions for wearables (just like with Connected TV) is more than expected.

Digital Out Of Home (DDOH) advertising

The age-old model of marketing based on outside banners and ads has also gone through some pretty impressive upgrades.

Programmatic advertising facilitated this way of delivering ads, and marketing in urban spaces has just entered a new era. It surely is a trend that will gain popularity in the months and years to come, so the marketing world should really carefully follow the progress there.

Focus on mobile programmatic ads

We use phones and other devices more often, and we rely on them to the fullest. As today’s societies operate through phones, mobile programmatic advertising has cemented its position in the market, and quite rightfully so.

Since there are billions of users adding up to immense mobile traffic online, you can be sure that mobile-oriented campaigns are a good call. Remember that when planning your next moves. The market share for mobile traffic will only get bigger, and there do not seem to be any stop signs.

User behaviors 101 – Intent-based targeting

If you want to get ahead of your competition in the market, you should try to understand customers’ behaviors. Doing so will help you elevate your effectiveness, increase ROI, and just optimize your campaigns.

Demographics are no longer the main factor you should be pursuing to find out what the audience wants. For a long time, it surely was a crucial element of marketing (remember how Nike found out that teens are a perfect fit for their Air Jordan campaigns?). However, today’s data allows us to find those who REALLY want to buy something. Knowing what they seek to purchase makes it easier for campaign managers to directly respond to users’ needs.

Ad-receivers are thankful, as they get an answer on a silver plate. Advertisers are happy to see their campaigns convert. This relationship can not get any better.

Buy now-pay later platforms. It’s all about the experience

Another trend and a solution that gives us (as consumers) more pleasure from purchases. How?

By disconnecting the act of buying from the act of payment. The endorphin and dopamine high that buyers get after completing an order shall not be disrupted by the uncomfortable moment of emptying one’s pockets.

From a marketer’s point of view, it’s easier to engage an audience with content or purchase when they are enjoying the experience up to the hilt. Also, buy now-pay later platforms have their own customer base, which could be well utilized by marketers. It attracts new audiences, too, as otherwise, some users would not be so keen to complete the purchase.

The buy now-pay later format is a response to what Gen-Z and Millennials actually need. As Wordplay found out, these two generations are not keen to go into debt, and only a third of them actually have a credit card. There are various reasons for this, with the 2007 financial crisis probably being the most important one.

Therefore, the possibility of delaying the payment without taking a loan will become a perfect source of getting valuable users.

UX-based ad approach

Use your tools to lead the user through the whole funnel. Find out their intent, catch their interest, become their guide, and eventually bring them to the final station – conversion.

You only have milliseconds to catch their attention, so make sure the campaign facilitates all the processes for the users. Society is overloaded with information, so internet users are naturally looking for solutions that help them save time and brainpower.

Zeropark Commerce Media is all about detecting the user’s intent and matching it with the best-fit campaign. When they are presented with a quality suggestion, they can skip the SERP and go directly to the advertiser’s website. This gives marketers the advantage of not having to compete for users’ attention in Google.

Vertical search has more and more enthusiasts

Internet behaviors have really changed a lot. While in the past people would go to Google for virtually everything, nowadays, they tend to use vertical search engines more often. The market offers specialized platforms, that you just know will work. The catchphrase ‘Hotel? Trivago’ didn’t get so recognizable for no reason.

This is the kind of knowledge that is widely used in campaigns, as these types of ads are much more secure. The audience has probably already decided to spend their money anyway, thus the campaign, if properly set up, should do well on the market.

This also goes well with the human need to get answers right away. If the customer receives a perfectly-shaped offer, they will not waste their time on further research.

Marketers only have a split second before the user skips the ad and moves on with their search. What could be done so that the campaign is still efficient?

Consumer suggestions promoted by online advertising efforts are uber-effective, as they allow users to simplify the search process. All the time they saved by clicking or tapping on the suggestion could be consumed on buying a product they were searching for.

What awaits in the future? We could not be more excited to see it. As we are currently on the brink of a new era of cookieless programmatic advertising, there will not be a better moment to get engaged in the movement and capitalize on that.

Drive incremental performance to your brand

with commerce media solutions for advertisers & publishers!

Learn more

Łukasz Pośpiech

Zeropark Logo
Team Internet Logo