“Though real-time buying originated during a depressed economy, when stretching media budgets was a mandate, it has proven its usefulness and efficiency beyond dollar allocations and has matured to a point that even advertisers with ample display budgets use and will continue to use RTB to make a portion of their display ad buys,” analyst Lauren Fisher wrote in the eMarketer report “Real-Time Bidding: As Spending Forecast and Future Growth Factors.”
“Globally, we expect RTB to account for a quarter of total advertising revenues by 2015, compared with more optimistic forecasts of 50%,” said Monica Savut, senior research analyst for Econsultancy, in an August 2012 interview with AdExchanger. The company published a Real-Time Bidding Buyer’s Guide in August. “Both media buyers and sellers are still at an experimental stage, so we’re at least a couple of years away from widespread acceptance.”
However, more premium buyers are becoming interested in RTB. According to Casale Media’s sell-side Index Platform, in the second quarter of 2012, 57% of all RTB advertisers were major national brands. Overall, the number of RTB impressions increased by 28% between the first and second quarters of 2012.
“Big brand marketers like Kellogg are talking about the use of programmatic buying very publicly now and that creates and environment where other marketers are comfortable,” Forrester’s O’Connell told AdExchanger.
In fact, data from Rubicon found that the top 10 advertisers by RTB spend in the third quarter were all well-known national brands. The top five brands were AT&T, Toyota, Sprint Nextel, American Express, and Southwest Airlines.
“Long term, ten years out, RTB will be the basis for about half of all display advertising,” Karsten Weide, program vice president of digital media and entertainment for IDC, told AdExchanger. “But eventually, almost all spending will go through RTB, excluding custom executions and sales to top key accounts.”