“With the recent buzz around Salesforce.com and Oracle and some of the traditional technology companies nibbling in to the ad stack, I think it’s a big opportunity for Publicis and Omnicom to use that scale to wrestle that control back in a very different manner,” said Paul Chu, VP of RTB sales and publisher development at PubMatic.
For instance, Omnicom’s data and analytics division Annalect announced in June it would deploy Salesforce.com’s Marketing Cloud platform across an agency network of approximately 5,000 clients. Hypothetically, an Omnicom ad manager could manage social ad campaigns through Social.com with CRM integration for access to customer data to improve targeting efforts. More of these holding company-enterprise tech alliances could be key.
As for the tech companies, Omnicom’s John Wren said during the press conference Sunday (see AdExchanger story), that “five years ago Google, Facebook, Twitter didn’t even exist … We have many new competitors today than we would have five years ago.” But the fact remains that Google and Facebook are sources of premium inventory to media buyers, which wouldn’t make them a direct competitive force for the holding company, so to speak.
With the automated DoubleClick exchange or FBX, for example, leveling the playing field through programmatic buying, it lessens the chance that massive scale at the holding level will matter on a deal-by-deal basis.
However Nardone said he still thinks “it becomes incumbent upon those companies to work very closely with [the holding companies] because they have a disproportionate amount of spend base.”
If, as a combined entity, Publicis and Omnicom come close to managing half of all ad spend in the US, as some reports indicate, “this kind of gives them the ability to exert their own standards,” Chu said. “So, while they haven’t in the past, that’s going to create a tremendous amount of opportunity for them to dictate terms in platforms and standards and that’s where you kind of see where they’ve been investing in the ATDs and moving toward data” management and a renewed focus on digital tech.