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Ask the expert: Is there any way in which print buying can also be automated?

With the collection of audience data, programmatic buying for traditional offline media has been in progress in markets such as US, Singapore, and China. In US, you can now programmatically buy print ads based on specific audience set. Time Inc., the largest magazine publisher in US, has started to allow programmatic buying of print ads on its magazines since 2015. In an article by AdAge on this highlighted that, “Media-buying agencies can use the platform to select the audience they want to reach, including “luxury,” “women,” “men,” “lifestyle” and “business/finance.” (Time Inc. plans to offer more segments in the future.) Buyers don’t know in which magazines their ads will run, only that they will likely appear among the titles in the audience segment. They can request specific placements and positioning around certain editorial content, although that might require separate negotiations.”

For TV, the increasing popularity of digital TV such as Netflix and alike opens an opportunity to buy TV ads programmatically. SingTel announced the launch of programmatic TV buy utilising Appier’s technology in early 2015. In China, platforms such as LetTV also allows you to buy TV ads based on specific target audience.

After witnessing the performance of programmatic display buy, marketers and publishers are now tapping into the technology and applying them to traditional offline media channels, to increase efficiency for both sides. We should expect to see more applications of audience data in strategising traditional media buy this year, in an attempt to reverse the decline trend of traditional media spending.

Antony Yiu

Heading the Search and Performance practice at MEC Asia Pacific, Antony’s digital performance experience includes Google and Internet start-ups in the U.S. His experience spans a variety of functions including search engine marketing and optimization, digital media buying and planning, email campaign management, and market research in both academic and commercial settings. Antony began his digital career while working for Google in its Mountain View headquarters, before moving to a number of startups including oDesk and AdBrite. He moved to Hong Kong in 2008 to become the Managing Director for iProspect Hong Kong, as well as Key Clients for Asia Pacific. Antony has a wealth of experience working with multinational companies in finance, travel and hospitality, cosmetics, B2B, consumer electronics, and luxury fashion clients throughout his career. He’s recognised as a leading expert in the field of search and is frequently quoted in the media regarding digital and search engine development in Asia Pacific. Antony is also a frequent speaker at industry conferences around the region.