The report cited increased efficiency throughout the ad campaign planning process, which on average it found takes 40-60 steps and contributes to the 20% of media budgets spent on tasks not related to data or media buys.
A primary concern among publishers looking at RTB markets is diluting their brand value in an open, commoditized marketplace. Private RTB-based marketplaces have been used by some publishers to take advantage of automation while still allowing them some degree of control over sales.
The report concluded that while private marketplaces have helped publishers become more comfortable with RTB-based markets, they too face pressure from open marketplace alternatives. Although eCPM rates are forecast to contract in the short term, long-term rates should rise along with bid activity.
Despite concerns by publishers over losing control of their ad inventory, IDC said the increased efficiency brought by automation meant those who refuse to automate sales will not remain competitive. Examples cited include Yahoo and The New York Times, both of which have seen the use of direct sales models result in decline of top-line revenue alongside the rise of RTB-based spending.
IDC’s report was based on interviews with 20 digital ad executives in the United States, United Kingdom, Germany and France, as well as previous research and public industry data.