Advertisers demand a clean up of 'the digital swamp'

The digital ad industry has received stern warnings over recent months as many leading CMO's including Marc Pritchard, chief brand officer of Procter & Gamble, the world’s biggest advertiser and Keith Weed, CMO of Unilever, the world’s second-biggest advertiser, have demanded action to clean up what has been called the digital swamp.

The problems with online advertising have become a serious issue among advertisers with Big Digital's lack of transparency, the YouTube brand safety row (when dozens of brands discovered their ads were appearing next to extremist content), computer bot fraud where ads are not even seen by humans, and the Cambridge Analytica scandal, when the data firm obtained personal information on 87 million Facebook users.

The YouTube brand safety row has also encouraged brands to take more responsibility for the placement of their ads. No longer are they prepared to 'spray and pray' and neither will they delegate all the decision-making to their media-buying agency.

Instead, as research by the Interactive Advertising Bureau, a US trade body for the digital ad industry and Accenture Interactive, the digital marketing arm of consulting giant Accenture has found, 65% of brands are bringing some or all of their programmatic ad-buying in-house. Many brands have also introduced tougher, so-called 'whitelists' of sites on which their ads can appear, as demonstrated by J.P. Morgan Chase who slashed its list of approved sites from 400,000 to about 10,000 last year. It's clear that digital agencies need to up their game to survive.

Fiona Swainston is SVP Europe of programmatic advertising agency Digital Ignite

Photo by delfi de la Rua on Unsplash

Strategic Digital Advertising Technology

The single most significant regulation in the history of digital advertising, the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), comes into force on 25th May 2018.

While often portrayed as a negative by many in the digital advertising ecosystem, GDPR will in fact be the catalyst for a new era of quality and clarity, with publishers having to carefully scrutinise the quality of their partners more than ever and with severe penalties for those that don't. Unfortunately, there are many advertisers and agencies who are slightly behind the curve in compliance, but things are improving.

Often cited as the future of marketing itself, programmatic advertising has brought huge benefits to digital marketing in recent years, with technology enabling advertisers to precisely target audiences efficiently and at scale, while also delivering relevant, personalised, messaging that enhances the user experience for consumers.

In the UK, programmatic digital display ad spending continues to be strong, despite concerns about GDPR and brand safety; issues that made it into mainstream media this year. There are still bits and pieces to iron out, but transparency is improving and will get even better as various technological plays come into effect.

Programmatic digital display ad spending continues to rise at a healthy clip. From £1.99 billion ($2.69 billion) in 2015, programmatic will account for £3.39 billion ($4.58 billion) in 2017 and predicted to rise to £4.52 billion ($6.10 billion) by 2019. This represents 79.0% of all UK digital display ad spending, and that share is more than likely to reach 84.5% or more by 2019.

As a comparison, last year more than 80% of digital display advertising in the US was programmatic advertising, up from 23% in 2011.

But programmatic in many countries has also spawned a somewhat incomprehensible and opaque ecosystem, in which many suspect agencies have thrived, while issues around quality, ad fraud, and brand safety appear to have proliferated.

Put simply, GDPR is very likely to be a good thing for the digital advertising industry, resulting in a thinning of the herd among agencies in the ecosystem.

This is precisely why US-based Digital Ignite - - have now opened an office in the UK, able to provide advertisers in the UK and Europe with the following:

  • Highly targeted programmatic advertising.
  • Real-Time Bidding.
  • Real-Time client-facing Dashboard.
  • GDPR compliant.
  • Digital Ignite provide managed services (rather than SAAS) using strategy, Big Data, RTB and attribution technology to deliver lead/sales-orientated solutions for clients.
  • The Digital Ignite stack is brokered through 200 exchanges, DSP's and data companies who are constantly bidding against each other for the best KPI for clients.
  • Digital Ignite's data pull is a 30 page pivot with hundreds of thousands of data points.
  • Digital Ignite are the processor for all campaigns.
  • Being a digital advertising agency, Digital Ignite also offer creative services.

Whether you're an agency or an advertiser, to learn more about Digital Ignite and what it can do for your business, contact Fiona Swainston, SVP Digital Ignite, Europe, via

Hot Stats on Internet Usage [Updated for 2020]

We know the Internet is a wonderful commodity that has brought so many opportunities into the world but do we ever stop and think about just how far the Internet has come? We are so busy using new apps, new websites and new online tools it is easy to forget how much we can do online these days. So we thought that this would be a great opportunity to appreciate the Internet and everything it does for us.

Just to put our appreciation into context, this useful infographic from Top 10 Website Hosting demonstrates just how important the Internet has become. For example, over half of the world’s population are now using the Internet, with 50% of them located in Asia.

Did you also know that there are now 1.75 billion websites recorded on the Internet in total?  I’m sure that you will agree that these are fascinating facts.

Social media is, of course, a huge element of the Internet with people of all ages and backgrounds regularly using one form of social media or another. As of January 2018, Facebook had 2.6 billion monthly active users so it is clearly a massively used platform. YouTube is another highly popular social media platform with over 1.8 billion accounts. Businesses are turning to social media as a key marketing strategy to reach large audiences to promote their services to.

100+ Statistics And Facts of The Internet[Infographic] by the team at Hostingclues100+ Statistics And Facts of The Internet Infographic

Are You Making the Most Out of the New Google AdWords Interface?

Since Google released its new AdWords interface, it has received mixed reviews from the users – while the design is very sleek and provides a ton of useful data, some of the more experienced marketers have run into difficulties trying to figure out where to find all the features that they need in the new layout.

But no matter what you think of the new design, the fact remains that with it, Google introduced a ton of new features, some of which promise to make a huge difference for the savvy marketers that are able to adopt them quickly.

In this article, we’ll go through some of the most promising features of the new Google AdWords interface and talk about what they can mean for your PPC campaigns.

Promotion Extensions

The new AdWords solution promises extended opportunities for those marketers that want to highlight their promotions and deals without wasting the ever-precious characters that are available for each ad.

The Promotion Extensions function will allow marketers to highlight sales and offers on the ad separately, which can help provide more options to get your message across.

Alternatively, you could use the Promotion Extensions feature to really emphasize the promotion that you’re running, highlighting its main benefits in the headline, copy, and in the Extension.

Advanced Reporting

Another area where Google AdWords have really made strides is its reports – they provide you with more data than ever and do so in a way that’s very comfortable to use and easy to understand.

It’s now easier than ever to keep track of insights into your campaigns, how are different ads performing, as well as numerous metrics such as device and location that can give you new ideas for targeting your audience.

And while AdWords always featured advanced reports on clicks, conversions, costs, devices used and much more, the way the information can be presented and sorted in the Google AdWords interface makes the process of tracking your campaigns easier than ever.

Call Bid Adjustments

Those that have run extensive PPC campaigns know the headaches that making adjustments on multiple bids can be, and Google has finally taken steps to make this process easier, at least for those that want to have an easy way to adjust their bids for calls, placing call information in mobile search ads.

This can be great if you want to prioritize having live conversations with your prospects instead of having them visit your website. By showing your call extension more often on the ads, you will be able to get the most out of your bids.

Campaign Creation

With the new interface update, Google AdWords have introduced advanced forecasting features in its campaign creation process. The forecasting tools allow gaining insights into the potential clicks, CTR, CPT and many other metrics, greatly assisting in the ad planning process and helping in both Search and Display Network Campaigns.

Another great improvement to the campaign creation process is the ability to develop the entire campaign from one page, without having to navigate through numerous areas of the AdWords interface to find the information needed.

Intuitive Design

You can’t underestimate how important the reimagined design of the AdWords Interface can be for marketers. Obviously, at the beginning, there are going to be challenges  getting used to the new layout, but overall, it’s easy to see how intuitive navigation can be once you get used to it.

And a lot has been left to the individual preferences of each user – marketers can now choose how much navigation options do they want to see when working on the campaigns.

Demographics Targeting

Those that liked to play around with Google AdWords Demographics Targeting options in the old AdWords version should be excited about the update – the new interface features some added options for demographics targeting that can help marketers further narrow down their audiences, producing hyper-targeted ads in the process.

Along with the previously available Gender and Age options, now marketers will be able to sort their audience in terms of income levels and parental status.

Parental status can be a real game changer for many – it will allow marketers promoting baby products or toys to have incredible targeting opportunities, reaching audiences that are very likely to be interested in what they have to offer.

As for the Household Income Targeting, it also has huge potential once marketers get familiar with the possibilities – targeting audiences based on the price point of the product can greatly increase the conversions.

This is especially true for AdWords users that sell high-end products that aren’t affordable to most – with Household Income Targeting, users will be able to pinpoint the households that are most likely to buy.

As for lower-income households, these can be successfully targeted with competitively priced products or special deals that bring a lot of value.


Author Bio:

Josh Williams is an experienced SEM Manager at One Egg. He combines in-depth expertise in PPC and content marketing helping businesses of all sizes.