Technology, automation, and algorithms are just a few of the words tossed around when people talk about programmatic buying and selling. TC Media felt that there was an often-ignored element missing from all that conversation – human interaction. That’s why consultation is a key part of the Canadian Programmatic Marketplace, a premium online ad-buying marketplace launched by the company this past March.
“What we bring to the table is the human element, relationships. We take more of a consultative approach to programmatic,” says Brock Bradley, VP business development, Canadian Programmatic Marketplace. “It sounds a bit strange, counterintuitive to talk about human elements in such an automated process but we really think that at this time it is definitely required to facilitate these types of buys and make sure all the plugs are plugged into the right place, the logistics are set up correctly. I think there’s a quote that says that technology is great at answering questions but it’s up to humans to tell them what questions to ask, so there still needs to be a guiding hand.”
TC Media recognized the importance of programmatic buying early on and has been strategically positioning itself to be an industry leader in the digital marketplace for the past few years. In order to bring the expertise it believed it would need in-house, it bought Redux Media in 2012, a company that has been in the forefront of real-time bidding supply and ad network development since 2005. Redux Media provides broader reach for advertisers that encompasses thousands of sites in both Canada and the US.
TC Media’s Canadian Programmatic Marketplace focuses on premium Canadian inventory. It is a fully-transparent, brand-safe environment where advertisers can access display, video and mobile premium Canadian inventory in both French and English from 95 premium content partners and more than 650 websites in real time. Ad opportunities are available in all of TC Media owned and operated inventory including Canadianliving.com, Ellecanada.com and Ellequebec.com. It also offers exclusively-repped inventory for partners such as Livingly Media, Spin Media and Hockeybuzz as well as 100 regional newspapers across the country. In total, it delivers over one billion monthly impressions and 14 million unique Canadian visitors.
Bradley says the targetability of the Canadian Programmatic Marketplace and the fact that it is 100% transparent are attractive features for advertisers who want to see the inventory they’re buying, who they’re reaching and where their ads end up. In addition, he says the Canadian aspect is important one for both buyers and sellers because while the CRTC has regulated Canadian content quotas for broadcast, Cancon is not a protected commodity when it comes to online media. “As Canadian companies, we do have to watch out for ourselves to a certain degree since, for awhile, everything was being centralized in the US. There are thousands of domains out there, so we have to make sure Canadian brands reach Canadian consumers and stand out in the Canadian market.”