Ad mediation is a hot topic in ad operations these days, and is being touted as the next big thing for maximizing revenue. Publishers have several options when it comes to partnering with a vendor to help fill their inventory, but not all mediators are created equal. Some (like Sortable) are better than others.
What is ad mediation?
Ad mediation technology allows publishers to make their inventory available across multiple ad networks in order to maximize fill rates and increase revenue.
Why should you use a mediator?
The landscape for display advertising technology is incredibly complex, and working with several partners is often a critical part of a publisher's monetization strategy. Managing all these relationships is a lot of work, but so is creating a site with great content (and making money from it). Often, publishers find themselves in a catch-22 situation: they need to create engaging and relevant content so that their sites continue to generate revenue, and they also need to ensure they are maximizing revenue opportunities to generate enough income to make maintaining the site worthwhile.
Ad mediation can relieve the pressure publishers feel to choose between creating compelling content and creating a steady stream of revenue. Requests are evaluated and handled by the mediator, achieving the highest yield for your inventory and freeing up your time to focus on your site content.
So, now that you know why you should use ad mediation, you're ready for:
Ten things you'll get from a great ad mediator
- More reach with less work
There are so many ad networks and exchanges that it's not realistic for a publisher to be able to manage all those relationships. A strong partner will be agnostic and maintain relationships with the top ad networks and demand partners. Working with an ad mediator means that you get to work with those industry leaders too. You only have to manage a relationship with one partner, but you get access to an entire network to help you fill your inventory and help you make more money.
Programmatic is only a piece of your overall monetization strategy. A good mediator will be flexible and support the monetization decisions you make. Whether you've entered into direct deals with advertisers or you want to apply rules to how your inventory is filled, your mediation partner should work with you to meet your objectives.
Data transparency is key to making good business decisions. You should have access to real-time reporting on multiple data points so you can see how your site is performing across a wide array of facets. Reporting should also be easy to understand and completely unified.
- Adaptive technology
The ad industry is complex and changes every day, and ad networks perform differently under different circumstances. You should look for a mediation platform that is updated regularly to keep pace with the industry. For example, Sortable's platform is powered by an advanced decision engine. Our engine analyzes billions of impressions and uses machine learning to evaluate which partner will perform best (yield the most revenue) under specific circumstances.
- Negotiating power
When you choose a mediator that works with a number of publishers, you will benefit from being one of the many. To an ad network or demand partner, a network of publishers represents a significant piece of business, and has far more influence than a single publisher. A good mediator will leverage the strength of its portfolio to negotiate.
- Insights from big data
Billions of impressions are passed through an ad mediation platform, and smart mediators will analyze this data to find patterns and glean insights. For example, ad mediators can identify detrimental activity such as ad fraud quickly by looking at impressions in the aggregate, while fraudulent activity could easily be missed when looking at single impressions.
- A new look
A good ad mediator will look across your site for opportunities to increase revenue. A mediator with a lot of experience will be able to make recommendations, such as changes to your layout, to optimize revenue. You should look for a partner who is able to draw on experience and apply learnings to help your business grow.
- Technical expertise
The process of monetizing a website is very technical, and there are few publishers who have the technical skills (or desire) to optimize the process and maximize revenue for their site. Ad mediators often have a team of developers working with them, and you can tap into their expertise.
- An extension of your ad ops team
Programmatic ad ops people know the intricacies of every ad network and demand partner, they understand the strengths and weaknesses of each vendor, and can help you make decisions about what partners will work best for your site.
- Things you didn't even know you wanted
You want your mediation partner to be passionate about making more money for clients. The best partner will always be looking for ways to improve the monetization process and will be willing to try new things. At Sortable, for example, we own and operate a number of sites with millions of users, which act as a large sandbox for running tests and experimenting with new ideas. When we come up with new tooling, we deploy it across all the sites we work with, and everyone benefits. You want to work with a partner who goes above and beyond to help you make more money.
Learn more about ad mediation
We at Sortable are publishers too, so we understand the challenges you face on a daily basis. Ads suck. We're trying to make them suck less by managing relationships with your demand partners so you can focus on creating great content for your site. If you are interested in working with us, or learning more about ad mediation, contact one of our Ad Operations experts.