Real-time bidding for mobile - everything you need to know

“There’s no question about it: buying on real-time bidding (RTB), also known as programmatic bidding, is shaping up to represent the future of the mobile ad marketplace.” - VentureBeat

What is real-time bidding?
Real-time bidding is impression-by-impression ad serving. Advertisers participate in online auctions when an impression becomes available, and the winner’s ad gets served. This process occurs in milliseconds.

What is an impression?
An impression occurs when a user is engaged with an app or mobile website with available advertising space.

Why is this real-time bidding "better" than other ways of ad buying?
RTB technology allows advertisers to reach more qualified eyeballs, no matter what the customer is looking at on their mobile device. It also allows advertisers to buy ad space faster, more accurately, and with less work. Lastly, it enables us to create products like DropIn Local Advertising that let small businesses access mobile advertising for $10, $5, or even $2 a day.

Where do ads show up?
Ads are served on thousands of quality apps, games, and mobile websites such as: weather apps, messaging apps, local news, entertainment and sports channels.

When does a customer see an ad?
Mobile display ads reach customers when they are engaged with their mobile device and located in your target area. The app or website sends the user’s location data to the ad network along with the ad request. There are no beacons, sensors, or hardware necessary to reach the customer.

>> Example: open up Accuweather or Weatherbug and watch as the ad loads. It’s highly likely that a real-time bidding auction just occurred in order for that ad to be served. Cool, right?

Why is location targeting important?
Particularly for advertisers who have a physical presence or retail location, knowing when a customer is nearby and showing them your ad is the most powerful way to determine if they are likely to be influenced by your ad message.

How do you get the customer’s real-time location data?
When an app or website sends an ad request (“I have ad space available!”), if available, they also transmit other anonymous user info such as location coordinates, gender, age, interests, and more. Ever wonder why your favorite word scramble game asked for your age when you signed up? Well, that’s one reason.

What if I want to limit who sees my ad, or where they see it?
Picking specific zip codes is already a great way to filter based on demographic data. You know where your customers live and work, so use that data to your advantage. It’s also possible to limit who sees your ad with filtering like gender, age, HHI, or interest category. However, increased filtering will decrease total available impressions that can be purchased.

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I will be commenting here more often and inviting my colleagues to support this approach to local marketing. DropIn is a friend to small businesspersons.
Posted on 9/2/14 8:48 PM.