Can Small Developers Play the Private Marketplace Game?

Tom Lerner
Senior Mobile Strategy Manager
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Private marketplaces and direct deals have been key components of the larger publisher’s media strategy for a long time. Through PMPs, publishers are able to sell their premium traffic at higher rates, with full transparency, improved user segmentation, and guaranteed deals. But, can smaller developers get in on the action too? Let’s take a look.

Why Use a Private Marketplace?

Publishers have been able to get the best of the best from PMPs. Here are just a few of the many benefits:

Full Transparency: A publisher has more control over ad quality on their premium traffic. More than that, they can choose the exact ad and content shown, ensuring that their users only see ads that are relevant and appealing.

Better User Segmentation: PMPs offer better user segmentation in which demand partners can target their desired audiences and afford more competitive publisher rates.

Guaranteed Deals: Fixed prices and reserved traffic are often a big part of advertisers’ media strategy. Having the option to reserve inventory for a deal opens a world of demand opportunities and, of course, better rates.

Traditionally speaking, big publishers have it easier – their inventory will always sell, and they are often approached to create deals without investing a huge effort in the process. Strong publishers also typically have an internal sales team that reaches out to brands and agencies to create tailored deals. Additionally, they are able to use third-party DMPs to help create better segmentation of their audience, at scale, and thus improve their offering drastically.

How Small Developers Can Reap the Rewards of the Private Marketplace

With a few simple steps, small developers can make their inventory relevant, increase their media value, and enjoy the advantages of the private marketplace.

First, find the right tech partner. Not all SSPs are created equal. Find the one that matches your needs – not only RTB-related, but also one that makes the best use of your data and creates beneficial deals for you.

Leverage your 1st party data. You probably know a lot about your users – age, location, interests – but how do you leverage that data to attract demand partners? Take everything you know and discuss it with your point of contact on your SSP (or wherever you manage your inventory). You can even offer them relevant deal segmentations and use them as your own personal sales team for your media.

Once they understand your audience and specifically what you have to offer advertisers, they will be able to better match the right demand for your inventory. They might even add you to an existing deal running on their exchange.

Use 3rd party data. Integrating with a 3rd party DMP isn’t always a simple task for small developers. A way to bypass this issue is to work with a smart exchange that offers their own data (through an in-house DMP) as a service for publishers and developers. This type of exchange will allow you to segment your users based on insights from their DMP – and this can be a serious game changer for you.

As you can see, the private marketplace is no longer solely a big publisher’s game. With the increased focus on audience data, PMPs are relevant for all developers. All you need to do to get started is find the right partner. So what are you waiting for? Get active, leverage your data, and diversify your media strategy.

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