Preparing to launch a private marketplace for B2B publishers, BPA Worldwide, a not-for-profit provider of business media auditing services, said it will have about 30 titles from B2B publishers participating in the exchange by September.
BPA Worldwide signed PulsePoint as one technology partner in May.
To date, BPA said ASI Publications, Gulf Publishing Co., Haymarket, SourceMedia, and Wainer are participating in the new exchange.
BPA says its forthcoming exchange of audited member sites will help members participate in programmatic trading and reach scale on their own. The marketplace will enable interested buyers to purchase media on a guaranteed basis or bid on highly qualified publisher inventory, which commands top dollar.
“Both large and small publishers have embraced this. Many publishers in this space recognize that advertisers have shifted to programmatic,” said Scott Roulet, VP of B2B Media Exchange, BPA.
Roulet said the exchange will enable publishers to be prepared as their endemic advertisers move budgets to programmatic (automated guaranteed and auction-based). “It’s about the enablement we can help them get in in a way that minimizes the risk,” he said.
For example, BPA has vetted the technology vendors and negotiated with them so publisher members don’t have to assume all those tasks, and provided tools and customer support to ensure that teams can implement and execute advertising.
In addition, BPA will take ad inventory and expose it to non-endemic advertisers and endemic advertisers that publishers do not have currently. They can then take their first-party data and extend its reach within a B2B audience. “This is a way to help publishers use their first-party data and target users on other B2B sites, but outside of their owned and operated sites,” Roulet added.
He emphasized that the BPA membership is comprised of publishers, advertisers, and agencies that are all audited, so advertisers that buy B2B inventory can be assured of brand safety.
SourceMedia jumped on the bandwagon early, according to Matt Yorke, CMO. “Our view is in the near future, the market will bifurcate, and close to half of all our digital business will be done programmatically, and the other half will be high-touch, integrated marketing solutions. With that in mind, it makes sense for us,” Yorke said. His company has been programmatically “live” since around February.
Yorke said the strength of a B2B exchange is that BPA understands the volume-to-CPM ratios for the segment. Also, all sites must be audited by BPA to participate, so viewability is top of mind: “It’s a really good place for us to go for audited media,” he added.
SourceMedia currently has a customer data platform within the BPA exchange. Yorke said BPA will put a data management platform (DMP) solution in place later this year with unified consistent segments.
While initially the BPA’s pitch to publishers revolved around unsold inventory, Yorke said most B2B publishers don't actually have a lot of it: “Our challenge is driving enough traffic to make our advertiser demand. It’s not about unsold inventory,” Yorke said.
The benefits of an exchange? Publishers get to join an established infrastructure that operates in a brand-safe, audited environment with like-minded partners.
He said SourceMedia will use the exchange for all its programmatic direct inventory, private marketplace deals, preferred deals, and any unsold inventory it has.
Looking ahead, Yorke said once the DMP is in place across publishers, creating data co-ops is an interesting possibility. “Today we use data to drive advertising revenue -- but when you get into a data co-ops, you can drive revenue that’s not dependent on advertising, and other publishers outside B2B could buy data sets.”
-Tobi Elkin, MediaPost