Trends in Ad Tech

Halfway through the 2010s, several key technological developments are blossoming that will likely define the next decade of digital advertising and content creation. These next-generation technologies will be debated, dissected and discussed at the Content and Communications World Conference taking place in New York City Nov. 11 and 12.

Here are a few trends that are buzzing heavily in ad-tech circles.


For several years, programmatic ad buying has been building buzz and attention, even though many agencies don’t have a viable programmatic strategy yet. As the service matures throughout 2015, it is becoming clearer that buying and selling ads using algorithms over programmatic platforms will soon represent a major piece of digital advertising’s future.

Programmatic TV advertising is a huge evolving piece of this—imagine a world where TV ads are sold and bought almost instantaneously with accurate audience data being the most important factor. Programmatic and wearables will also be highlighted during the half-day workshop “Advertising Outlook: Trends in Content & Technology” Nov. 12 at CCW.

Programmatic is shaping digital advertising, content and television. A report released recently from market analysts at Business Insider Intelligence found that the number of ads sold through programmatic platforms has seen an impressive rise since last summer.

“We find that the US digital ad market will reach a programmatic ‘tipping-point’: For the first time this year, programmatic transactions will be a majority (52 percent) of non-search digital ad spend,” notes BII’s Mark Hoelzel, a research analyst, in a post detailing the report. “We estimate 30.6 percent of total digital ad spend will go to programmatic real-time bidding (RTB) platforms, and 21.7 percent will go to non-RTB programmatic.”

TV ads sold through programmatic platforms could leverage the data of billions of viewers to ensure the right video content is reaching the right audience at the right time – at the right price. However, there are some major challenges, including how executing buys will work for large broadcast audiences. These are the challenges that will be discussed in detail at CCW, as well as what content will work best with programmatic TV advertising.

Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality

Virtual reality and augmented reality are two exciting new mediums on the verge of breaking into the mainstream with several significant public releases including the Microsoft HoloLens and Oculus Rift scheduled in the next few months. The Rift headset is strictly VR, which is defined by a total immersion of the user. On the other hand, AR doesn’t block the world but enhances it, like with Google Glass or HoloLens. By 2020, analysts believe this will be a $150 billion industry.

For content creators, the two fields are distinct in terms of the type of content that succeeds and how consumers use their devices. For brands, there are plenty of places where companies can fit in through sponsored video content, general advertising and other opportunities – some have yet to be discovered.

This virgin territory will be discussed at the “Virtual Reality, Augmented Reality & 360 – The Future at Hand” session at CCW, which will dive into how video content can work within this innovative new medium.

“We think VR’s addressable market is primarily core games and 3D films, plus niche enterprise users,” Digi-Capital’s managing director Tim Merel wrote in a report this year. “VR could have tens of millions of users, with hardware price points similar to console. We anticipate consumer software/services economics similar to current games, films and theme parks but don’t expect substantial additional data or voice revenues from VR.”

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