An interview with Lada Durica, Lead Digital Analyst at Bauer Media

06/09 By IAS Team

Bauer Media, a multi-platform entertainment media owner widely recognised and rewarded as being industry innovators, partnered with Integral Ad Science, the leader in quantifying digital media quality, to leverage Integral’s Pub Expert solution.

Through actionable intelligence gleaned from Pub Expert, publishers gain a deeper understanding of inventory value and can implement custom, effective monetisation strategies.

Bauer Media used Pub Expert to see which inventory offered the best viewability rates and to optimise inventory to perform to IAB standards. Bauer Media saw significant uplift rates across all campaigns, with the best case seeing overall viewability rates double.

Here, Bauer Media explains more about its viewability strategy and how our partnership helped them achieve its revenue goals and grow the business.

How do you use the Integral Ad Science Pub Expert solution day-to-day?

The Pub Expert platform is used in many different ways –  the sales team use it to inform responses to briefs by quickly searching the UI for relevant ad units, whilst our ops team use the detailed reporting to optimise campaigns with specific viewability KPI. Pub Expert allows us to look in-depth into changes in viewability rates across our ad inventory enabling us to understand whether development changes have had an impact on viewability.

What business challenges does Pub Expert help you solve?

Viewability is a key concern for our clients and delivering them quality inventory is vital to our business.  We have been tracking our viewability progress intensively over the last eight months, the resulting analysis has helped us create ad units that are highly viewable and perform better for our clients.  We are also keeping track of suspicious, fraudulent activity and ensure the rate of fraud is consistently below the Pub Expert average.

What uplift and improvement have you seen since using Pub Expert?

We have seen uplift in overall viewability throughout the Bauer Network and some of our brands have seen viewability rates for specific campaigns increase by nearly 80%. This uplift has helped us secure clients who are particularly concerned with viewability levels on their creatives.

What specific Pub Expert functionality do you find most useful?

The Bauer Media team find the quick view of ad units and campaigns within the UI particularly useful, enabling efficient and insightful optimisation. We can investigate particular ad units that have been altered and see how it is performing and then feed back to the business on its performance.

How has the Pub Expert platform helped you manage discrepancies with your agency partners?

Integral Ad Science has been instrumental in getting our viewability stats to align with those of the agencies. We are no longer focused on differences between viewability figures but actually optimising campaigns for better performance. This has led to clients steadily increasing spend with us as they see quality improvements for their campaigns.

The improvement you have seen has been incredible. Can you give any further detail on how you used the Pub Expert platform to achieve such improved performance?

We set up an account with Integral Ad Science to analyse viewability across our ad placements and brands. We concentrated on a few and quickly noticed that viewability on leader boards and billboards were not optimal due to their page positioning. After several tests, we managed to increase the viewability dramatically with fast tracking thanks to Integral Ad Science.

Additionally, Pub Expert reporting highlighted lower viewability on below-the-fold MPU placements.   Integrating the placement within articles and optimising its load time skyrocketed viewability of this particular ad placement. Just looking at overall averages would never have enabled us to unlock improvements so quickly and easily.

Moving forward, enabling custom criteria tracking within the Pub Expert platform is helping us to analyse viewability across different page types. We are now looking into how ad placements perform within different site templates. This data will help us establish optimal template structure, keeping viewability in mind.

Following on from above, what has been the main impact? Have you seen improved relationships with agencies and increased client spend?

With one particular client, we saw spend increase by nearly a third once we started applying viewability insights from the Pub Expert platform. We are also seeing improved performance across all campaigns, which as a result is increasing our retention rate with clients.

Agencies are now speaking to us about guaranteed viewability and adding us to plans with clients particularly interested in only serving creatives on viewable inventory.

How can you use the above learnings for future campaigns?

We are using our Pub Expert learnings and implementing them across all sites. Viewability has become a key metric to which we use to calculate success when re-launching brands.

Any additional thoughts?

As a premium publisher, we need to ensure that we give the online market a transparent and effective way to promote brands and their advertising. Our partnership with Integral Ad Science helped us to enforce a clear strategy across our entire portfolio. Using Integral’s Pub Expert platform we have achieved fantastic uplift in viewability that is aligned with the IAB standards while receiving reporting that is in line with our advertiser clients.