Leading digital ad tech platform iPinYou has recently released Introducing Transparency in Digital Advertising 2017, China’s first white paper addressing the transparency issue in the industry. Taking off from the theme of transparency, the white paper advocates tapping into artificial intelligence to review the ad serving process in digital advertising as a solution to tackle the challenges faced by the industry.
As such, iPinYou concludes that “transparency” and “AI” are the buzzwords for the digital advertising industry in 2017. The company believes that the benefits of AI can only be fully reaped when advertisers demand for a higher standard of transparency as the industry marches forward to the era of “Transparency 2.0”. That means transparency of data, transparency of mechanism and transparency in measurement.
Speaking to RTBChina in an interview, iPinYou founder and CEO Grace Huang picks up a few important points from the Introducing Transparency in Digital Advertising 2017 white paper.
1. When can the industry fully implement transparency: It is very possible for us to achieve transparency
Asked on when can the industry expect the ad serving process to be fully transparent, Huang pointed out there has been a varied understanding of transparency to begin with. According to her, the transparency that iPinYou pushes for should be:
First, advertisers must be able to consolidate all data that can be consolidated. Second, the processes involved must be monitored by technology and thirdly, the effectiveness of advertising and ROI can be enhanced by technology.
Huang emphasised that it is impossible for the industry not to implement transparency. Advertisers only need to pick the right partner and strategy in order to set a realistic KPI, as nothing could be more transparent than assigning decision making to a “robot”. It may not even take very long for advertisers to achieve transparency, as it is a “Yes” or “No” decision, whether you want a transparent approach or not.
“The key towards transparency lies in the technical partner, advertisers must choose a partner that is willing to be transparent,” said Huang.
2. Transparency and AI: Transparency is the precursor for advertisers to enjoy the benefits of AI.
As the theme of the Introducing Transparency in Digital Advertising 2017 white paper is “Built on transparency, powered by AI”, it simply means making the machinery of programmatic advertising transparent. Transparency of data and measurement are the precursors to realize the full potential of AI.
According to Huang, any AI-driven strategies is the result of machine learning. Therefore, the machine cannot carry out the task successfully if the mechanism and measurements are not transparent. Meanwhile, transparency is not just about surface issues such as brand safety and invalid traffic, or measurements of viewability.
From the perspective of brands, transparency means being able to consolidate all the data along the touchpoints while the technical partners must be open about the mechanism they are using. It is also a matter of whether all the measurements used can be made transparent. Transparency is certainly a precursor before brands can enjoy the benefits of AI.
“In reality, transparency will spur the growth of the industry and set it on a progressive path.”
3. Holding out hope for the white paper: Let it be the light of influence and benchmark for the industry
Speaking on her expectations on the white paper, Huang said: “We hope that the white paper will be able to shift thoughts and perceptions on the benchmark issue. Its content is accumulated from practical experiences and laid out in detail, including what should be the benchmark used when choosing a technical partner. We even covered the different metrics used for the CTR of different types of ads. The foundation of the white paper is built on a huge amount of details and practicality, I hope it will help clients to achieve a different understanding of transparency.”
4. Whole-chain marketing solution product MIP
iPinYou has announced the launch of its whole-chain marketing solution MIP (Marketing Intelligence Platform) as part of its pledge to bring the industry one step close to Transparency 2.0. Built on AI, MIP drives on the power of machine learning to empower brands. The platform of this solution allows brands to develop their own intelligence driven marketing strategy, leaning on an ecosystem of data for a more comprehensive solution.
Huang pointed out the three factors that set iPinYou’s marketing solutions apart from the rest:
First, iPinYou develop its own AI. Secondly, iPinYou works on a huge amount of raw data. Thirdly, the right algorithm, iPinYou is committed to using machine learning continuously to help brand marketers develop the best marketing strategy. Fourth, iPinYou has a large team with close to 350 members.
“As iPinYou builds up our machine learning capabilities, we help brand marketers with various types of strategies and make AI the foundations of their solutions, our capabilities is far beyond the expectations of brand marketers. It is our mandate to help brand marketers come up with intelligence driven marketing strategies, I can proudly say MIP defines our platform, and it is indeed a whole-chain solution.”
5. Market forecast: The good players will force out the bad actors..
Asked on what she thinks about the marketing industry in 2017, Huang said: The first half of 2017 is driven by a trust crisis. But I believe the second half of the year will give us time to build a new understanding of marketing. Increasingly, we are aware that brands are feeling more confused about marketing strategies, they are disgruntled about the traditional way of doing things and timeframe. So I am convince that the good market force will drive out the bad actors. It is hoped that we will be able to welcome a new era under iPinYou’s transparency pledge.