The Wall Street Journal this week posted a pretty exhaustive roundup of the pain we’re all going through as the battle for ad viewability wears on.
In its CMO Today blog, the WSJ does an excellent job outlining the background of viewability, what’s broken about it and what needs to be done to fix it.
What’s also interesting about this writeup is the hinting at the kinds of conversations those on both sides of the table are having during this period of growing pains. It can be pretty much summed up by this quote:
It’s a “total cluster.” … That was among the softer comments.
Do publishers want to be able to track and guarantee ad viewability to 100 percent? Absolutely. Do advertisers want 100 percent viewable ads? Obviously.
I’d also like to fly from California to New York in three hours, and I’ll maybe be able to one day. But not today.
Advertisers stamping their feet and demanding 100 percent viewability now isn’t helping. Likewise, publishers throwing up their arms and saying “we can’t” isn’t helping either.
What this issue boils down to is that there needs to be an agreement between seller and buyer to transact business based on the current technological capabilities of the system while still pushing the tech forward.
The technology that will one day enable 100 percent viewability is in development, but it isn’t ready yet. Until then, each side has to agree on ways to do business now and ways that the business should be done in the future — agree on a path.
It should be comforting to know that technologies that are put to use are more often than not improved. So, use the accredited viewable display vendors and establish ways to resolve inconsistencies in reporting. Use them, and they will push forward to improve their accuracy and efficacy.