Billboards are one of the oldest advertising formats known to humankind. The first American “large format” billboard made its debut all the way back in 1835, spreading the word about a circus in New York City, and with the first leasing of a billboard in 1867, a cornerstone of the out-of-home advertising industry was born.

Of course, we’ve come a long way since those early billboards for “horse blankets and rheumatism pills,” and today, digital out-of-home advertising (or DOOH advertising) is a uniquely agile way to reach consumers.

So, how does digital out-of-home advertising differ from traditional out-of-home advertising, and how should marketers embrace it within their media mix? Read on to find out.

What Is Digital Out-of-Home Advertising?

Let’s start by defining the baseline of traditional out-of-home advertising, which is essentially any ad you might see (you guessed it!) outside of your home. Common examples include billboards, ads on public transit, signs at a sporting event, or banners at the airport.

Digital out-of-home advertising, meanwhile, expands upon this field by adding a digital element. So instead of, say, a static printed billboard along the side of the highway, you might have a giant screen displaying a rotating series of digital advertisements to passing drivers. If you want to see just how much digital has changed the OOH landscape, just look at present day Times Square!

DOOH has also brought us innovative new ways of advertising, particularly using video. You know those little screens that keep you entertained in the back of a taxicab? Or that play above the pump at a gas station? Both are prime examples of how digital OOH advertising can help marketers reach captive audiences.

And just how popular is DOOH among advertisers? We’ll let the numbers speak for themselves:

What Is Programmatic Digital Out-of-Home Advertising?

Programmatic digital out-of-home (aka pDOOH) includes any DOOH inventory that is purchased programmatically. It offers advertisers all the same benefits of DOOH and allows them to harness the power of real-time bidding (RTB) to activate their DOOH campaigns in an automated and data-driven way, typically by using a demand side platform (DSP).

Here are some key stats marketers should know about pDOOH:

Why Is Digital Out-of-Home Advertising Important?

Let’s take a quick look at three major reasons why digital OOH is an important part of any marketer’s media mix:

Flexible Timing and Targeting

Unlike traditional out-of-home advertisements, digital OOH ads can rotate and change over the course of a week, day, hour, or even minute—all allowing advertisers to better target and reach specific audiences in specific areas at specific times. So if you wanted to, say, reach commuters heading home from the finance district at rush hour, digital OOH can empower you to do just that. And because DOOH technology supports programmatic advertising, marketers have even more control over the placement of their ads.

Not Home? Not a Problem.

In pre-pandemic times, consumers spent 70% of their waking hours outside their homes. As the world steadily gets back to normal, people are anxious to return to the world outside those four walls, and digital out-of-home ads are an ideal way for advertisers to grab (and keep!) a customer’s attention when they’re out in public.

Interactive and Engaging

Some of the most innovative examples of digital OOH advertisements take advantage of modern technology to create dynamic, interactive campaigns that take audience engagement to the next level. Whether by harnessing the power of virtual reality (VR) or artificial reality (AR) to create an immersive experience, utilizing QR codes to compel viewers to take immediate action, or using video capabilities to captivate, DOOH gives advertisers the opportunity to engage audiences in unique ways.

How Does DOOH Fit Within the Customer Journey?

TikTok, and CTV, and Pinterest—oh my! With a seemingly ever-expanding list of devices and channels to connect with audiences, today’s consumer journey is complex. And given how much time people spend on their personal devices, many marketers might wonder: How does DOOH, a channel that does not live on mobile phones, laptops, or tablets, enhance the customer journey?

First, DOOH gives advertisers the opportunity to connect with audiences when they may be less reachable on their personal devices. This could be when consumers are out-and-about in the city, at a sporting event or concert, or shopping at a mall or grocery store.

Plus, DOOH ads allow advertisers to connect with consumers in contextually relevant environments. With digital screens popping up virtually everywhere, there’s a wide variety of places to connect meaningfully with audiences. Advertisers can take advantage of this and place their ads in moments that are meaningful to audiences. This might look like:  

Thanks to its ability to reach customers in a variety of places, and particularly the places in which people are less active on their personal devices, DOOH advertising can significantly enhance the customer experience.

Wrapping Up: Digital Out-of-Home Advertising

If you’re looking for a way to shout your brand’s message from the rooftops—both literally and figuratively—digital out-of-home might just be the answer. It offers advertisers a significant opportunity: Connect with audiences, in relevant environments, through an engaging and memorable medium. As such, it’s no surprise that DOOH is growing rapidly and that more and more advertisers are embracing it in their campaigns.


Want to learn more about how to incorporate DOOH to your media mix? Our Media Strategy & Activation Team can help.

Have you heard the news? The future is cookieless, and it’s coming up fast—in the second half of 2024, to be precise!

To prepare for a world without third-party cookies, it’s important that members of the advertising industry embrace new ideas and collaboration. The success of any identity solution is heavily dependent on scale, and so partnering with an independent owner of a solution with the most scale—or, better yet, partnering with multiple—is likely to be the best option when the dust settles. Working as a group, evaluating options, and sharing principles is the best course we can take to minimize the impact on customers.

With that in mind, here’s a look at three groups working toward innovative identity solutions:

IAB Project Rearc

In February 2020, the International Advertising Bureau (IAB) introduced Project Rearc, a global initiative designed to get stakeholders across the digital advertising and media supply chain together to re-architect digital marketing in a consolidated effort to harmonize personalization and consumer privacy. And in June 2022, as part of this initiative, IAB Tech Lab released its Global Privacy Platform, a mechanism for transmitting consumer choice signals from websites and mobile apps to advertising technology companies.

Along with other industry leaders, Basis has been an active participant in Project Rearc—reviewing the proposals, evaluating specs, and providing feedback. It proposes rigorous technical standards and guidelines that inform how companies collect and use such an identifier so that:

LiveRamp RampID

LiveRamp introduced IdentityLink in 2016. The technology, now known as RampID, allows resolving hundreds of different identifiers for consumers used on devices and marketing platforms in a privacy-compliant manner. It doesn’t matter if data is offline or online, first-party CRM or third-party behavioral, online exposure data or mobile app download data—all of it can be tied back to a unique, privacy-safe identifier at the consumer level.

Unified ID 2.0

Unified ID 2.0 (or UID 2.0) is an open-source ID framework that uses hashed and encrypted email addresses. This ID will remain open and universal, while introducing upgrades to consumer privacy and transparency. Unlike other solutions in the works, UID 2.0 is free to publishers and advertisers. UID 2.0 will operate across advertising channels, giving advertisers insight into campaign performance across streaming TV, browsers, mobile, audio, and TV apps and devices.

The four principles under which UID 2.0 operates are:

1) Open source and interoperable: The ID framework will be open source and available for free for everyone.

2) Optimum security: Emails will be hashed and encrypted to prevent abuse. Regular rotation of decryption keys will help enforce accountability measures.

3) Independently governed: Participants will agree to a code of conduct, and the UID2 Compliance Manager will audit all participating UID2 parties to determine their compliance, relaying the results to UID2 administrators and operators.

4) User transparency and privacy controls: Consumers will be able to easily view and manage their preferences and opt out at any time.

A bright future

The digital media ecosystem is a dynamic one, with new methodologies, tools, and opportunities emerging every day. The third-party cookie has been a protagonist for the last 20 years, but it’s not the only character in this story. And with the third-party cookie going the way of MySpace, we are at the dawn of a new era for adtech—one filled with opportunity and room for innovation in the way we connect with our audiences.

Advertisers who focus on making the most of their first-party data and cookieless media alternatives, optimizing campaigns based on real-time learnings, and embracing identity solutions that are high-performing and privacy compliant are sure to be well-positioned for the cookieless future.

As we go through these changes together, it’s important that industry players stay committed to working together, listening to the market, collaborating with regulatory bodies, adapting and developing new products, and keeping customers/users abreast of changes as they develop. If we can do that, we’ll all emerge from a place of strength and primed for success in our new, cookieless world.

Want to learn more about how to embrace the cookieless future? Check out Beyond Third-Party Cookies: Your Guide to Overcoming the Identity Crisis.

First off, let us provide a quick disclosure: This blog post was written by a human.

It’s a bit crazy to think that, just a few months ago, no such statement would have been necessary. Sure, if you got enough monkeys with keyboards together for an infinite amount of time, they would eventually have written this very piece (along with the complete works of William Shakespeare). That’s just science. But in 2023, there’s a new player in the content creation game, and it has the potential to disrupt just about every aspect of digital advertising: Generative AI.

The next generation artificial intelligence tech burst onto the scene late last year with the debut of ChatCPT and DALL-E 2, both from Silicon Valley AI pioneer OpenAI. ChatGPT, in particular, became an over(five)night sensation when it reached a million users in just five days. And in January 2023, ChatGPT was estimated to have 100 million active users, making it the fastest-growing consumer app of all time. To put that in perspective, it took TikTok nine months (and Instagram two-and-a-half years) to hit 100 million users.

One of OpenAI’s biggest early investors, Microsoft, has since poured an additional $10 billion into the company and announced a host of new AI-powered features, including a ChatGPT-powered Bing search engine that already has a million-plus person waiting list. And that interest could be a big (dollar) sign of what’s to come: Microsoft estimates that gaining just 1% more market share in search could translate to an additional $2 billion in ad revenue.

In turn, Google introduced the world to Bard, its own AI chatbot, while promising new, soon-to-launch AI-powered features in Google Search that “distill complex information and multiple perspectives into easy-to-digest formats, so you can quickly understand the big picture and learn more from the web.” Although, unlike Microsoft’s announcement, Google’s was not-so-well received by the public (or Wall Street…) 

And another potential player, Meta, has spent nearly 10 years and billions of dollars on AI, but had to remove its new chatbot “Galactica” from the internet after just three days after receiving “an avalanche of complaints about Galactica’s mishaps”.

Altogether, AI is already proving to be a powerful disruptive force in the tech world, and the wider implications of this potential AI revolution could be extraordinary. Microsoft’s own founder, Bill Gates, has called AI as major a tech innovation as the internet or the PC, and also warned that AI’s emergence will inevitably result in the loss of white collar jobs. Or, as the Harvard Business Review put it, “The question isn’t whether AI will be good enough to take on more cognitive tasks but rather how we’ll adapt”.

But how will AI—be it generative or otherwise—affect marketing and media buying?

AI's Impact on Digital Advertising: Today and Tomorrow

In some ways, AI already has its virtual fingerprints all over digital advertising. Machine learning, which most would consider falling under the larger “AI” umbrella, is at the heart of programmatic advertising and real-time bidding. And digital advertising platforms leverage AI to facilitate custom campaign optimizations, facilitate time savings, reduces ad spend waste to optimize media, increase conversions with best device type, placement, price, and inform decision-making with real-time data and insights.

Now, how will AI shape the future of the industry? To find out, we asked Basis Technologies’ April Weeks (EVP, Media Services & Operations), Amy Rumpler (SVP, Paid Search & Social), and Ryan Manchee (SVP, Brand Marketing) for their perspective on all the latest buzz surrounding AI and its potential impact on media, marketing, and digital advertising: 

How are you feeling about all of the AI developments of the past few months—particularly as they pertain to our industry?

April Weeks: It's an interesting time to be in the industry. During a relatively short period of time, AI has become a consistent topic of conversation with what seem to be endless opportunities. The rate of evolution is fast. I believe benefits and opportunities will start to emerge across the advertising industry that enable more efficiency and potentially better work.

Amy Rumpler: I think they're very exciting, and honestly, not that surprising. AI has been integrated with media in various ways for a while now, although most of those developments have been on the back end, driving innovation like how ads are targeted to—and appear in front of—consumers.

Recently, those features have started to take more of a front seat for media buyers to explore and interact with. In social, for example, Meta's Advantage+ features use machine learning (or AI) to help you create campaigns that can efficiently and effectively reach the right audience with a variety of creative options and optimize in real-time to drive performance. ChatGPT and similar AI models are taking these concepts a step further by making the interaction between the person using the tool and the tool itself feel more conversational and less transactional. I'm interested to see if that helps build trust and confidence in AI and its ability to do the job requested of it. If people believe the machine can do what you're asking it to quickly, effectively, and to the standards of what you'd expect if a person was behind the controls, then adoption will rise—which benefits both the tools’ continuing to improve, and the individual’s ability to focus on other tasks.

At the same time, I think like any other evolving technology, there's a need for better understanding of how these tools will be used, policed, and controlled that's necessary to address (and probably should have happened before they became broadly available to begin with). For example, if we're using an AI app like ChatGPT to return search query results, then we need to be able to control what information these AI systems have access to, how they compile it, deem it credible or accurate, return it in a way that's not discriminatory, inflammatory or fictitious, and credit the original source (if available). Without a strong legal precedent, and an internet full of false information, I think this question has to be addressed immediately and should be a primary focus of this discussion. 

Ryan Manchee: I’m absolutely fascinated. Twenty years ago, when I first started in the advertising industry, the most significant innovations were around rich media advertising, ad serving, and search. Mobile was nascent, and dial up was still commonplace. Seeing how the industry adapts and adopts new technology is what makes our jobs so much fun. I believe we are in the very early stages of AI, but seeing how the language models allow for greater accessibility and exploration of this technology is going to drive smart, creative ways to rethink approaches to marketing.

What impact do you think AI will have on the advertising industry in the next three-to-five years?

AW: The impact will be significant and likely on a similar scale to the emergence of the internet, and the disruption that resulted across the industry. Current processes, workflows, and performance insights will be automated and ultimately change how work is created, delivered, and possibly monetized.

AR: I hope that AI will help further streamline and automate the work we do to create, implement, and optimize campaigns so that strategists, creatives, and analysists can spend more time improving and ideating and less time on manual tasks. When it comes to search and social specifically, I fully believe AI will be integrated in how we develop and optimize content, research keywords and other targeting opportunities, identify new partners and placements for plans, and adjust things like budgets or flight dates in more automated ways than we can imagine based on our surface level experiences with AI thus far.

RM: I'm bullish on the possibilities, but I don't think anyone has it figured it out quite yet. My hope is that the hype around AI will bring a renaissance to creativity and redefine what we mean by “personalization”. Is a hyper-personalized ad really just swapping out the copy of a city name, distance to a location, and plugging in the weather while swapping a background image in an ad? Or is it about creating an experience that is inspiring in a unique and compelling manner? I don't view AI as a threat for anyone's job in the next three-to-five years, but I do believe it will take the place of responsibilities from three-to-five years ago (and today).

What should marketers be doing right now to prepare for the changes AI will bring to the industry?

AW: Marketers should keep a close tab on AI developments within the industry, start to identify how AI could be leveraged within their organizations, and begin testing to gain early learning.

AR: The first thing marketers should do is take time to educate thenmselves on what's currently possible and test the tools that are publicly available to start to get familiar with them—including their capabilities and their limitations. There's a lot of speculation in the news right now, but I think the best way to start to envision how AI might change or benefit your current role is to experiment with it yourself.

RM: Explore, experiment, and get more people and teams involved. There are creative opportunities and challenges, there are legal challenges and opportunities, and there are operational workflow opportunities and challenges. Don't make rash decisions, but have some fun and stay curious.

What's your hottest take on how AI will impact digital advertising?

AW: AI will drive increased automation and fundamentally shift how we work across the industry. What today takes a week will be compressed to a day with an increased level of insight and intelligence.

AR: I think it will revolutionize the way we as marketers think about creating and implementing advertising campaigns, and it will equally impact the way we as individual consumers of media interact with and experience content, entertainment, and the internet at large—and in a shorter period of time than some might think.

RM: While most of the focus right now is on the visual and content outputs of AI, the biggest innovations in the industry will come from how it helps marketers more smartly plan, execute, and optimize their digital media.

Given its potential impact and acknowledging its risks (as raised by experts on matters such as privacy, misinformation, job security, etc.) should AI be swiftly regulated?

AW: The industry should embrace regulation at the onset. As we've seen, regulation is an important part of digital advertising, and establishing the right regulatory framework early will enable adoption and maximize the benefits of AI.

AR: Yes, absolutely.

RM: It's too early to regulate, but early adopters should be aware of potential legal challenges. With that said, my high school freshman son has classmates who have attempted to pass off AI generated essays as their own, and this is being regulated!

Anything last thoughts on AI you want to share?

AR: Advancements in AI are going to cause a paradigm shift that causes younger generations to reconsider career focus areas, create rise to new fields of expertise, and reshape the future of how we use and support digital, connected, AR, VR, and internet-enabled devices and tools. But it's also going to require a deep understanding of how to get the most out of the machines powering the systems, as they've not yet developed to the point that they can 100% operate independently and return accurate information or recommendations without better inputs from their human users.

People need to understand that they can't assume these tools are going to return the same quality of outputs as they [humans] could. As an example: if you ask an AI to write a poem describing tulips, it might be factually correct, but it also might be nonsense that doesn't connect on an emotional level the way you or I might write a poem describing tulips. The same is true if you ask an AI program to develop an ad promoting a new brand of diapers to women who have just given birth. There are just some things that an AI program can't yet fully grasp or understand, but that a person maybe could.

RM: Watch out for the fakes. Both the companies that are jumping on the AI bandwagon calling their pseudo tech AI, and the fake information, fake visuals, and fake work. Our future will not be given over to AI, but these wonderful new tools and systems will help the smart, creative people in our industry continue to do amazing work.

It’s been a busy couple of months for digital advertising industry regulators, with new regulations taking effect around the US and new legislation popping up around the globe. What’s the latest, and how will it impact advertising and marketing professionals? Let’s dig in and find out:  

New Regulatory Action in Europe and the United States

Regulation in the European Union (EU)

While the United States has taken its time determining how to handle Big Tech regulation, the European Union has embraced its reputation as the world’s fiercest tech regulator.

Unrestrained by free speech rules like America’s First Amendment, the EU has taken the lead on matters like consumer privacy (with GDPR), walled gardens like Apple’s App Store and the Google Play Store (with the Digital Markets Act), and now its latest target: misinformation and hyper-personal ad targeting on social media.

The legislation, called the Digital Services Act, will compel social platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube to dedicate more resources to stomping out misinformation and hate speech on their platforms, and ban any targeted online ads that are based on an individual’s ethnicity, religion, or sexual orientation. Google and Meta would also be subject to annual audits to uncover “systemic risks” related to their social assets, and even Amazon would have to comply with new rules aimed at curbing the sale of illegal products.

These new European regulations will no doubt have an enormous impact on how social media companies combat hate speech and misinformation, how Google suppresses misleading search results, the criteria advertisers can use to target consumers, and how Amazon tracks down and removes banned items from its marketplace. While the Digital Markets Act (and its rules that govern so-called “gatekeeper platforms”) has already come into force, the wider-reaching Digital Services Act won’t go into effect across the EU until 2024, giving Big Tech companies—and the advertisers who use them—a bit more time to adjust their strategic plans and ensure proper enforcement.

Legislation in the United States

Back stateside, industry regulation is a bit more decentralized. While federal-level legislation has mostly lingered in congressional purgatory (more on that in a bit), a whopping five new state-level data privacy acts will take effect in 2023, with new regulations coming to Virginia, Colorado, Connecticut, Utah, and California.

The broadest and most impactful of those: the California Privacy Rights Act, aka CPRA. Building off the foundation of 2018’s California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA), the new act creates a California Privacy Protection Agency that’s dedicated to (and responsible for) enforcing the law—indicative of increased enforcement—while also reducing ambiguity around how to interpret some of the data-related aspects of the law. The CPRA now requires companies to give consumers the opportunity to not only opt out of the sale of their personal information, but also of giving or sharing that data with someone else, including a third party that might use it for cross-context behavioral advertising.

As Basis Technologies General Counsel Derek Zolner put it: “Essentially, the CCPA, CPRA, and the other data privacy acts that are popping up around the US are establishing legal enforcement mechanisms around personal control of one’s personal data and codifying many of the core principals of our industry—namely, transparency, notice, and the right to opt out. Only now, instead of the industry self-regulating these matters, state governments are intervening to take control of that enforcement.”

Meanwhile, at the federal level, Congress is considering legislation that could fundamentally alter the entire digital advertising landscape and, if passed, would potentially end the Big Four era of Big Tech.

A bipartisan group of lawmakers led by Utah Senator Mike Lee introduced a bill that would prohibit companies that take in $20 billion or more in digital ad revenue—think Google, Meta, and Amazon—from owning all of the tech and marketplaces involved in both the buying and selling of those ads. The legislation, titled the Competition and Transparency in Digital Advertising Act, would also bring new levels of transparency to the industry, requiring companies with more than $5 billion in digital advertising revenue to “act in customers’ best interests and provide greater transparency on data collection, the terms of winning bids and the fees they charge.”

In essence, the law would force ad behemoths like Google to sell or spin off parts of its $210 billion global ad business while delivering new levels of programmatic advertising transparency for advertisers and publishers alike.

Now, whether or not the Lee-drafted legislation ever makes it to the President’s desk is far from certain. However, the fact that it has finally reached the Senate floor after months of rumor—andthat it even has bipartisan cosponsorship in what is a very fractured Washington—shows just how real the desire is among many Americans for a digital advertising industry that’s less of a black box and more of a sunlit building with lots of South-facing windows.

US Antitrust Scrutiny

As if pending legislative action wasn’t enough, Google and Meta are also facing both consumer scrutiny and federal lawsuits around alleged anticompetitive practicesad auction manipulation, and monopolistic market shares. Google, in particular, has caught the eye of the Justice Department and several states and is now staring down the barrel of a new suit accusing the company of “monopolizing digital advertising technology” in violation of the Sherman Antitrust Act. If successful, the lawsuit would not just bar Google from engaging in anticompetitive practices, but force it to divest of some (or all) of its ad business, such as its ad server, ad exchange, ad networks, or DSP.

Together, Google, Meta, and Amazon account for nearly two-thirds of the $278 billion US digital ad market. Between those antitrust concerns and accusations of political meddling against big tech from both side of the aisle, the possibility of major regulatory changes in the digital advertising industry is all too real.

TikTok Regulation

Last but not least, while much of the focus of recent regulation has had an eye toward American-based companies, there is one notable exception to the trend: TikTok.

Many no doubt remember the TikTok regulation sagas of 2020, when then-President Trump attempted to remove the app from Apple and Google app stores over data privacy and national security concerns and even worked to force the company to sell its US operations to an American firm such as Oracle or Microsoft.

While these more immediate federal-level threats tapered off following the election of President Joe Biden, bipartisan lawmakers in Washington are reportedly growing increasingly eager for new regulatory action around the app, pointing to ongoing concerns about TikTok’s data practices and its ties to Chinese-owned parent company ByteDance.

Today, any attempt to bar the wildly-popular app from either iPhones or Androids on a nationwide level would undoubtedly be met with swift and severe backlash—particularly among Gen Z—and the Biden administration appears to be planning for subtler regulations, drafting an executive order that would allow the federal government to block deals involving Americans’ personal data when it feels they would threaten national security. Additionally, the US government has reportedly been negotiating directly with TikTok about plans to further isolate and secure US user data, including an agreement where TikTok would store all such data on American-based Oracle servers (as opposed to its own servers in both Virginia and Singapore).

If anything, the app has faced its harshest scrutiny at the state level. TikTok has been banned from government devices in more than half of all US states, numerous universities have blocked the platform from campus Wi-Fi networks, and a group of 15 state attorneys general have called on Apple and Google to change TikTok’s app store age ratings.

As TikTok continues to soar in popularity, gobble up market share, influence global culture, and embrace advertising opportunities, it will no doubt attract increased legislative and regulatory scrutiny from governments around the globe. So while it has thus far escaped initial regulatory attempts relatively unscathed, the clock is ti(c)king...

Potential Impact on the Advertising Industry

On to the big question: what does this all mean for digital advertisers?

For one thing, the Digital Services Act will potentially lead to safer advertising environments—particularly on social media—helping both brands and users enjoy a more hospitable digital ecosystem. With brand safety an increasingly-meaningful aspect of the brand-customer relationship, an internet with less misinformation and more trust would be more than welcome across the globe, let alone in Europe. The EU legislation will also mean some aspects of targeted digital advertisements in the region are slightly less personalized, at least on the basis of ethnicity, religion or sexual orientation.

When it comes to TikTok, the app's booming growth and rising ad revenues do not appear at risk with any new agreements surrounding US user data—if anything, it could provide digital advertisers and TikTokers alike with more confidence in the platform's safety.

As for Google, the biggest threat to its digital ad dominance—the 2023 antitrust suit—is an “ambitious swing”from the Justice Department that nevertheless has a very real potential to succeed. Google, for its part, has said the suit “ignored the enormous competition in the online advertising industry” and “mischaracterizes how our advertising technology products work.” Regardless, the suit could cloud Alphabet’s forecasts and bring further uncertainty to a company that just finished its largest-ever round of layoffs and is facing new search competition from an AI-powered Bing.

State-based US legislation such as the CPRA should lead to increased transparency and control over personal data for consumers—or, at least, for consumers from those states that have enacted new privacy laws. And as for the larger US bill, Google, Meta, and Amazon—not to mentiontheir lobbyists—will no doubt have plenty to say about its contents. Google's immediate reaction was to say that the bill will "hurt publishers and advertisers, lower ad quality, and create new privacy risks" and point to "low-quality data brokers" as the true problem. And in the months since it was first introduced, the bill’s progress has (like so many others) predictably stalled. But whatever the outcome, it’s clear that Washington is hearing the rising calls for digital advertising transparency from brands, publishers, and consumers alike.

As much as people want a unified, omnichannel consumer experience, they’ve also made it clear that they want more control over who can—and who cannot—access their personal data as part of the advertising process. Private companies like Apple (with iPhone’s App Tracking Transparency and lack of third-party cookies on its Safari browser) and even Google (which is famously deprecating third-party cookies in Chrome by 2024) have shown a willingness to slowly but surely give consumers more control over their data, but the rest of the advertising industry has at times seemed reticent to accept the realities of a cookieless future

If this regulatory news out of the EU and the US tells us anything, it’s this: one way or another, the digital advertising industry is going to have to prioritize privacy. Third-party cookie deprecation is happening, even if there’s no single, perfect “replacement” solution quite yet. And if Big Tech—and the advertising industry—don’t want to make the difficult choices involved in regulating themselves when it comes to consumer privacy, then world governments will likely be all too happy to do it for them.


Having an identity crisis of your own? Check out our guide: Beyond Third-Party Cookies: Your Guide to Overcoming the Identity Crisis.

Post updated February 21, 2023

These days, there’s no escaping digital video. In fact, research shows that US adults spend nearly over three hours per day watching digital video, and that number is only going to grow in the years ahead. There’s even a decent chance that before, after, or possibly even while you read this blog post, you will find yourself watching some digital video (like, say, this one of a turtle eating a strawberry).

For advertisers, this voraciousness for video represents an incredible opportunity to reach audiences in the form of digital video advertising. To help you on your journey, here are some useful digital video-related facts and tips for creating effective digital video ads: 

Where are people watching digital video?

On average, US adults spend 24 minutes of video a day watching videos on their laptops or desktops, an hour and six minutes per day viewing videos on their mobile devices, and over an hour and a half streaming on connected devices such as CTVs.

What are some types of digital video ads? 

There are three primary types of digital video ad units: in-stream, out-stream, and interstitial. Let's take a closer look at each: 

What are in-stream video ads?

In-stream video ads are ads that run before, during, or after other video content (aka pre-roll, mid-roll, or post-roll). In-stream video ads are displayed within the context of streaming video and often used to monetize video content delivered by the publisher. In other words, think of them as the digital video equivalent of a TV commercial.

What are out-stream video ads?

Out-stream video ads show up outside of video player environments. This type of ad unit typically includes less traditional video placements, such as in-article, native, in-feed, or interstitial videos. For example, a site visitor may be reading a cooking recipe article on a lifestyle website, and then a video ad may load in-feed or alongside the content. Depending on the environment, out-stream video ads can be auto-play or viewer-enabled play.

What are interstitial video ads?

Interstitial ads are a type of high-impact, full-screen video advertising that cover the interface of the host app or website. Interstitial ads are typically displayed at natural transition points within the flow of an appear website—such as between activities or as a screen takeover when opening an app or web page— and they usually auto-retract after a short period of time (say, 15 seconds) or via a close button.

How long is a typical in-stream video ad?

Typically, an in-stream video ad is either 15 or 30 seconds, with 15 seconds the oft-recommended length. However, there is some flexibility depending on the channel— we’ve seen successful ads that are as short as five seconds and as long as several minutes.

What about in-banner video ads? What are those?

Well, as you might guess from the name, in-banner video ads are digital video advertisements that play “within” a banner advertisement. You might see one at the top of a webpage, in the middle of an article, or on a sidebar.

Great! So, where can I place a digital video ad?

Honestly, at this point, it’s probably more practical to ask where you can’t place a digital video ad (inside a medical textbook, maybe?) Digital video ads are widely used on streaming video platforms like YouTube and Hulu, social media giants like Facebook and Instagram, gaming and streaming audio platforms like Twitch or Pandora, news and information sites, and seemingly everywhere in between. In short, if a website has video content, it almost certainly has the ability to show digital video advertisements.

What are some tips for creating effective digital video ads?

Want to create ads that will appeal to and engage digital video viewers? Here are five tips to inform and inspire:

Tip #1: Grab their attention early

According to both YouTube and Facebook, among others, it’s absolutely critical to grab a viewer’s attention in the first five seconds of an ad—before they either tune out or skip the remainder of the advertisement. This is especially important for mobile users and younger audiences (who, incidentally, are often one and the same.) Think of it as the new “five second rule”—only instead of determining the safety of food that you should probably just throw away because the floor is covered in pet hair, it’s about determining the effectiveness of digital video advertising.

Tip #2: Show, don’t tell

Video is a unique medium in its ability to quite literally show someone your product, service and/or organization in action. Don’t let that opportunity go to waste! After all, if a picture is worth a thousand words, and 4K video captures 60 frames per second...well, you get the idea. One thing you absolutely need to show? Your brand name/logo. This is particularly important in coordination with tip #1: a Facebook study found that consumers were 23% more likely to remember which brand made a given video ad if the brand was featured in the first three seconds of that ad. So don’t be modest: give yourself an early shoutout!

Tip #3 Don’t forget mobile!

Remember: your ad has to work and feel native on any device, so keep mobile users in mind when developing your video. Additionally, mobile users are likely to have their sound off if they come across your ad on many platforms—particularly social media—so make sure the ad is compelling and that the core message still “translates,” regardless of whether the audio is on.

Tip #4: Respect your surroundings

When making a digital video ad, be sure to take the channel/platform into account for that particular cut of the video. Your ad should ideally match the “vibe” of a specific channel, with the video feeling native to that platform, while staying mindful of what likely brought a viewer there in the first place. For example, a video ad that shows up in the middle of a Facebook feed should feel a little different to, say, one running in the middle of a bingeable show on Hulu.

Tip #5: Know your audience

Lastly, before you advertise anywhere—be it with digital video or otherwise—take the time to get to know your audience as much as you can, and then take advantage of any platform-based targeting at your disposal to better reach them. And it’s a digital video, after all, so be sure to use the digital CTAs at your disposal to send viewers directly to your website or app of choice.

How can I get even more tips on effective digital video advertising?

Want to dig deeper? Download our Video Unleashed guide to see tips for how to run a strategic video campaign, gain more digital video advertising insights, and a whole lot more.

California: land of sun, surf, Redwoods, Hollywood and, of course, consumer privacy regulations.

The Golden State was a US pioneer when it passed the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) back in 2018, giving California residents the right to know what personal information a business collects about them and how it is used and shared, the right to delete personal information collected from them (with some exceptions), the right to opt-out of the sale of their personal information, and the right to non-discrimination for exercising their CCPA rights.

But today, there’s a new regulatory act in town: the California Privacy Rights Act (CPRA). Building upon the CCPA, the CPRA adds some new rules, clarifies some old ones, and introduces dedicated resources for regulatory enforcement to help ensure California consumers’ control over their personal data. The CPRA also ushers in a year that will see five new state-level data privacy acts take effect, with regulations also debuting in Virginia, Colorado, Connecticut, Utah.

To get a better understanding of the latest laws and see how they could impact the digital advertising industry, we spoke with Derek Zolner, General Counsel at Basis Technologies, about the CPRA—the most expansive of the acts.

Here are some highlights from that conversation, including how the CPRA builds off the CCPA, what companies have to do to comply, and how it will impact the programmatic advertising industry: 

Q: What’s New with the CPRA?

California’s initial foray into the world of consumer privacy regulation was 2018’s California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA). That was really the first stake in the ground for privacy legislation here in the US. Prior to that, we had some self-regulation for our industry, and good citizens were already doing a lot of the stuff that the CCPA required—for example, in our ads and on our website, we have long allowed people to opt out of targeted ads based on cookie use—but the CCPA requires you to give people a right to opt out.

And now we have the CPRA, aka the California Privacy Rights Act, and that does a couple of things. One, it gives California some broader enforcement rights, creating a California Privacy Protection Agency that's dedicated to (and responsible for) enforcing the act. That, to me, indicates we're probably going to see more enforcement actions coming down the pike.

But it also builds upon the foundation laid by the CCPA in a few ways. The biggest part for our industry? The CCPA had a requirement that if you were selling data, then you had to have an opt-out on your website that said “Do Not Sell My Personal Information.” A lot of people in the digital advertising industry read this definition of “sale” very technically, arguing that if you weren't actually bundling up data, giving it to somebody, and saying “Pay me for this data,” then it wasn't a sale. At Basis, we didn't take that point of view, electing instead to honor the spirit of the law—i.e. giving consumers the right to opt out of things like what we do with cookie data, mobile ID data, and IP address data. 

But the CPRA eliminates any ambiguity around how to interpret this aspect of the law by now requiring companies to give consumers the opportunity to not only opt out of the sale of their personal information, but also of giving or sharing that data with someone else, including a third party that might use it for cross-context behavioral advertising. 

Essentially, the CCPA, CPRA, and the other data privacy acts that are popping up around the US are establishing legal enforcement mechanisms around personal control of one’s personal data and codifying many of the core principals of our industry—namely, transparency, notice, and the right to opt out. Only now, instead of the industry self-regulating these matters, state governments are intervening to take control of that enforcement. 

Q: What Do Companies Have to Do to Comply with CPRA?

The aforementioned opt-out message (ex. “Do Not Sell or Share My Personal Information”, “Opt Out”, “Your Privacy Rights”) has to be conspicuous on a company’s website and easy for consumers to access/use. Since any company currently operating in California should already have a “Do Not Sell” option on their site, many are choosing to simply add “or Sell” to the same link and give consumers the option to do both on the same page.

At Basis, we made updates to our website so that visitors from California have enhanced opt-out rights. One of the main thrusts of CCPA and CPRA is that California consumers can come to organizations like Basis and say, “Hey, what personal information do you have about me? What are you doing with it? And, if I want you to, please delete it or correct it or limit your use of it.” So we offer that to visitors from California through a link on our website, and then we then have 45 days to respond and let them know we're doing so. Additionally, for CPRA, there are some enhanced requirements for contracts between parties that clarify what their relationship is, and so we've retooled some of our contracts with customers and vendors to include what we believe to be those necessary requirements. It’s all about being clear, accurate, and truthful about what your relationship is.

The truth is, we were already doing most of what CCPA required—which was, in essence, having a privacy policy that tells people what you're doing with data in clear and understandable language, and then giving people the right to opt out of the use of that personal data. We’ve been doing those things for a really long time, and so I didn't see CCPA as a huge shift or change for us. 

But even with any of the minor changes that we might have to make, I don't view them as changing anything core or fundamental to how we operate, nor do I view it as unnecessarily burdensome for to us to allow people to have access to information about what's going on with personal data for them.

Q: How Will CPRA Impact Programmatic Advertising?

When CCPA came into effect, there was some concern that the sky was going to fall. The fear was that everybody was going to click on that “Do Not Sell My Personal Information” link and that cross-contextual behavioral advertising was going to go kaput—at least as it related to California consumers—because everybody was going to opt out. 

In fact, that's not been the case. The opt-out rates are very, very low, because (and this is not a legal explanation, but just sort of my intuitive opinion) people tend to take the easy way. What people want when they visit a website is the content, and whatever they think is the easiest way to get to that content, they're going to do. I think people are conditioned to just click accept on the website or whatever it is they need to get to the page they want so they can either watch the video that they're looking for or read the article or whatever it is. And so I don't perceive that these requirements are going to have a significant impact on our ability to continue to conduct cross-contextual behavioral advertising with programmatic buying.

If anything, I think the main impact of this is on compliance teams and lawyers, in that everybody that operates a website in California with any amount of volume is going have to do some compliance work to make sure they're adhering to the regulations. But beyond that, I don't think it's going to result in a in a meaningful economic change to how our business operates and works.

Until you have a fundamental change like you have in the EU, where you require “Opt-In” consent (vs. somewhere like California that only requires an “Opt-Out”), I don't think it's going to have a material impact on the amount of data that companies can use for behavioral advertising. What's likely to have a much greater impact is a technical change, like if third-party cookies ever go away from Google Chrome. That, in my opinion, would be a much more significant event than this legal change.

Q: What is Basis’ POV on Personal Data and Digital Advertising Regulation?

I would say our general guidance always is to be clear about what you're doing and give people the right to opt out of it. That means explaining as much as you can in your privacy policy, detailing what data you’re collecting and what you're doing with data, and then giving people the right to opt out of that usage in some meaningful and conspicuous way.

Generally speaking, at Basis, we we're in favor of anything that gives consumers more control of their personal data. Personally, I would be strongly in favor of having one point of reference for that—namely, a federal act—rather than 50 state acts that set up this sort of regional patchwork of compliance, and I think that aligns with where we sit as a company.


Looking for guidance on how to effectively connect with consumers while respecting their privacy rights? Check out Beyond Third-Party Cookies: Your Guide to Overcoming the Identity Crisis.

(Blog cover image: What DALL-E 2 produced when given the prompt, “A beagle celebrating the New Year while reading its favorite stories on an iPad”.)

With 2023 fast approaching and 2022 slowly fading in the rearview, we wanted to take a look back at some of our favorite blog posts from the year that was! Read on to see just a taste of our advertising and marketing industry coverage from 2022—and check out the Basis blog to see all the rest! 

Advertising Opportunities in the Metaverse

If we are to believe the hype (and the billions upon billions of investor dollars that are fueling the phenomenon) it appears the metaverse is well-positioned to become the “next big thing” in marketing and entertainment—even if, at this moment, it does not fully exist. For many brands, the sensible approach to the metaverse right now is to learn, observe, and wait for the concept to become more tangible, as it is still far too soon to know which investments will be viable in the long term. But for those looking to be early adopters in the space, there are a few initial metaverse solutions that indicate potential use cases for advertisers. Check out this post to learn all about how digital marketers can start tapping into them.

Climate Change and Sustainability Advertising: Tips, Dos, and Don’ts for Digital Marketers

Reports on the trajectory of climate change are growing ever more dire, with targeted carbon emissions goals looking increasingly out of reach barring swift and major regulatory and/or corporate changes. In the face of this, organizations continue to tout their climate pledges and roll out marketing campaigns—or, depending upon who you ask, PR stunts—demonstrating their commitment to environmentally-friendly values and practices. But many sustainability-minded consumers are making it clear that they aren’t buying what your brand is selling. And with consumers increasingly looking to corporations for leadership on the climate crisis, the old methods of green marketing just aren’t good enough. To help brands navigate this sensitive territory, this piece lays out some of the dos and don’ts of climate- and sustainability-focused advertising.

Why Contextual Targeting is Having a Moment in Digital Advertising

The forthcoming “cookie-pocalypse” threatens to wreak havoc across the advertising industry, and many marketers are responding like birds: either running around in panic like chickens, or pretending the crisis doesn’t exist and burying their heads in the sand, ostrich-style. Clearly, neither is sustainable, but are there any solutions out there that can help marketers get back to acting like humans? Oddly enough, the most practical one may be staring us right in the face: contextual targeting. And look, we get it: a lot of people are (quite understandably!) uninterested in hearing more about contextual targeting. It’s been around for a while and, candidly, it’s kind of boring. But in rare and exceptional instances such as this, old + boring doesn’t necessarily have to = bad. Just ask baseball fans, or anyone in the middle of a riveting game of Monopoly! Read this to learn all about contextual targeting, how it works, and why it’s a surprisingly great solution for today’s digital advertiser.

Everything You Need to Know About Programmatic In-Housing

Throughout programmatic advertising history, brands have largely entrusted its execution to agencies and trading desks. But today, in a world of unforgiving consumers and constantly shifting market dynamics, many brands are searching for an alternative to the traditional brand-agency model as they look to gain greater transparency into their media buys, more holistic control over their data, and greater assurance of compliance with privacy regulations. The result: programmatic in-housing. So, just how has the in-housing trend evolved to date? What forms can programmatic in-housing take? What are the benefits and challenges for brands? And what does the process really entail? This piece answers all these questions and more.

Listen Up! Here’s What the Podcast Boom Means for Digital Advertisers

People listen to podcasts everywhere. No, really: Recent data shows that most listening happens on smartphones, which means that listening can occur virtually anywhere: in the car, on a walk, at home, at work, on the way to a first date, hiding in the bathroom to avoid a terrible first date, in the 24-hour donut shop you always go to after a bad get it. As such, podcast ads provide marketers with a captive audience—ripe for high engagement—at any time, and in any place. But despite the growing popularity of podcasts, podcast advertising is still an underutilized and undervalued opportunity. This piece examines how (and why) podcast advertising can help marketers cut through the noise—pun very much intended!

Leading Through Turbulence

It’s been a rough couple of years, to say the least. As a leader at Basis Technologies, Lois Castillo, our Head of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion, is constantly thinking about how to support our people in the context of global stress, trauma, and burnout. And she’s not the only one: Many leaders today are wondering how to support their workforces through times of turbulence, and how to broaden their leadership skills to support their employees who have experienced a tremendous amount of harm and hurt during these unprecedented times. It’s a journey we’re all on together, and there are no one-size-fits-all solutions. However, this piece is a great starting place, featuring few useful strategies Lois has learned in her time as a DEI leader.

Going Deep on Live Sports Advertising Opportunities

Tuning in to live sports used to be so simple—and we’re not even talking about 50+ years ago, when that meant “going to the game” or “turning on the radio.” As recently as the 2000s, when it came to sports broadcasts, there were the major networks, ESPN, an occasional game on one of the Turner channels, and that pretty much was it. Today, sports leagues are scattering their broadcast rights around like digital Johnny Appleseeds, adding to an already-complex CTV and streaming video environment and creating new challenges for advertisers and consumers alike. In light of these dramatic shifts, how can digital advertisers effectively reach and connect with sports fans? Read this to learn all about it.

The Weird, Wonderful World of Geotargeting and Location Targeting

What’s the weirdest museum you’ve ever been to? How about the National Mustard Museum in Middleton, Wisconsin? Or maybe you’re hoping to visit the Museum of Bad Art in Dedham, Massachusetts? And don’t forget the British Lawnmower Museum in Southport, England (not to be confused with the Reel Mower Museum in Bluff Point, New York). While quirky destinations like these are fun for townies and tourists alike, creative marketers can also benefit from understanding the significance of such local attractions—especially in today’s industry, which is slowly but surely transitioning toward more privacy-friendly methods of serving tailored messages to consumers. This post explores some of the different geo-based targeting strategies that can help advertisers connect with their audiences wherever they are.

How Advertisers Can Succeed During Uncertain Times

From interest rate hikes, to an impending recession, to supply chain shortages, new economic complexities are impacting consumers’ daily lives and shifting their behaviors. And when consumer behaviors change because of what’s happening in the world, so too must marketers. Advertisers who quickly lean into an altered marketplace set themselves apart from those who see themselves as victims of unmanageable change. This piece evaluates the ever-changing economic landscape, its implications for marketers, and tactics advertisers can use to adapt to all the new complexity.

4 Adtech Horrors to Avoid This Halloween (and Year-Round)

Horror movie fans, this one’s for you. Inspired by classic tropes from fright flicks, this post highlights four horrors that can jump scare marketers during the digital campaign process and provides some helpful tips on how to steer clear of them altogether. Just think of us as the friendly neighbors who, upon hearing that you’re thinking of purchasing a certain decrepit mansion that goes on the market every few years, refer you to a different realtor.

Media Complexity in the Marketing Landscape

Speaking of complexity: As if recruiting wasn’t enough of a problem on its own, complexity in digital marketing and media presents additional crises for brands, agencies, and publishers alike. Transparency, speed, and cost-efficiency are all hindered by a rapidly expanding list of channels, formats, technologies, and solutions—all of which require new skill sets, guidelines, rules, and standards for marketers to learn. To solve these colliding dilemmas of staffing, transparency, speed, and cost-efficiency, the advertising industry must better understand their underlying causes. This post dives into the factors causing this complexity, and explores some of the solutions poised to usher in a better future for everyone working in the marketing space.

TikTok by the Numbers: Stats and Facts for Digital Advertisers

The TikTok era of social advertising has arrived. The short-form video app has blown up the model of what a social network can be, and it is increasingly a must-buy for a growing number of advertisers. In this post, we explore the evolution of TikTok through a collection of stats and facts that we’ve curated just For You. We cover the good and the not so good as we try to paint a picture of how (and why) the platform has become social media’s golden child.

Four Pro Wrestlers Whose Day Jobs Needed Digital Advertising

In the mid-1990s, professional wrestling was filled with wrestlers whose characters were defined by their day jobs: a garbage man, a circus clown, and even a federal tax agent. Today, marketers in these real-life industries use digital advertising, not dropkicks, to improve their bottom lines and meet their business objectives. Kind of makes you wonder: If these wrestlers were around today, would this era of digital advertising help them to attract and earn enough business to stay out of the ring? Check out this one-of-a-kind post to learn about four former professional wrestlers whose “day jobs” would have benefited from today’s digital advertising ecosystem.

Connected TV: Fact and Fiction

With more and more people using connected TVs each year, it’s no surprise that ad spend has exploded in kind. Of course, as marketers strive to make the most of the connected TV advertising opportunity, it’s likely they’ll encounter an overwhelming amount of information and recommendations. But as the adage goes, you can’t trust everything you read—especially on the internet. So for all the advertisers who want to separate fact from fiction when it comes to connected TV: This (delightfully GIF-filled) piece is for you.

Brand Safety and Avoiding Controversy in Digital Advertising

Brand safety is, unsurprisingly, increasingly top-of-mind for advertisers everywhere, but it’s of particular importance to programmatic advertisers. The automated nature of programmatic media buying lends itself to situations where, if you aren’t careful, your brand could end up placing an ad next to some very, very controversial or undesired content. Want to steer clear of negative headlines? The post examines some of the ways digital marketers can protect their brands and avoid controversy.


Be sure to bookmark the Basis blog to enjoy even more great adtech coverage in 2023! And while you’re getting ready for the new year, check out all of our 2023 trends content so you can stay ahead of the curve.

The year ahead will bring a host of major changes and serious challenges to advertisers. We will have to leave behind what we've long assumed to be true about capturing audience attention as we enter a new era of digital advertising. We have to embrace new and emerging channels. And we have to hold on for dear life during what is likely to be a bumpy economic ride.

But where there is change, there is also opportunity, and for those savvy marketers who are willing to evolve with the changing media landscape, 2023 could be quite a year. This report aims to showcase those opportunities and highlight how advertisers can best capitalize on their potential.

Ready to discover the trends that will shape digital advertising in the year ahead? Download Digital Sea Change: Basis Technologies 2023 Trends Report today!

Let’s start with this: Burnout is real.

Though it’s not a medical condition, burnout is nevertheless a very real, very definable occupational phenomenon that can tax a worker’s physical and mental health. The famed Mayo Clinic defines job-related burnout as “a special type of work-related stress—a state of physical or emotional exhaustion that also involves a sense of reduced accomplishment and loss of personal identity.” The syndrome has also been tied to anxiety and depression, as well as fatigue, reduced cognitive and emotional abilities, and mental distancing. 

Burnout has been having a moment of late—basking in the dull afterglow of the COVID-19 pandemic and helping fuel the mass job-departure movement known as the Great Resignation—and its impact has been particularly acute in the advertising industry. And even with the Great Resignation no longer wreaking havoc, the folks who remain in the agency world have only seen their burnout risk rise amidst rising pressures to deliver new dollars, fewer co-workers to share the burden, and a 53% global increase in new business pitches.

The impact, inevitably, is exhausted employees making more pitches with less time to prepare—and then, for the clients whose business they do win, having fewer hours to actually optimize and analyze campaigns. So burnout leads to more than just a stressed-out staff: it has a very real, very negative business impact for all parties.

Combatting Burnout in Digital Marketing

Sound familiar? If your answer is “Yes,” then first and foremost: we’re so sorry to hear you’re struggling right now! As a few of us can attest, burnout is no fun—like, at all—and trying to just power through it only further exacerbates is effects. Fortunately, many employers (including, it may be worth mentioning, Basis Technologies) have begun investing in an array of benefits to support their employees’ mental health and general wellness. Whether it’s a week offZoom-free Fridays, or a paid subscription to mindfulness and meditation app Headspace, these perks and gestures are one way companies can show their staffers that they care about their wellbeing and are taking measures to support them in the battle against burnout.

But while these employee-friendly benefits are both thoughtful and effective, they ultimately serve to treat the symptoms instead of addressing the underlying illness that prompts the burnout in the first place. In order to effectively tackle those concerns, employers will need to holistically address the way they do work. Here are two good places to start: 

1) Lead with empathy

Elvis Costello may have really been on to something when he crooned, “What's so funny ’bout peace, love, and understanding?” At a time where so very much is complicating people’s everyday lives—from economic turbulence, to supply chain crises, to global destabilization, to “tripledemics” and more—a little empathy can go a long way in establishing a stronger relationship between employers and employees.

Basis Technologies’ own Head of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion, Lois Castillo, wrote up a great blog post that features a list of four strategies for leading through turbulence, including acknowledging what’s going on, establishing systems of care, addressing situations head-on, and giving folks a (well-deserved) break. In it, she shares the following bit of wisdom: 

“Your people are your best asset: They’re the heart of any organization. You need them healthy and vibrant and committed. As leaders, if we don’t consider all the external stressors that are affecting our people and make sure we’re providing an environment that mitigates some of that harm, then our employees won’t be able to come in and focus on the job at hand.”

It's a great reminder of the importance of taking the time to understand and support your people—both as a marketing leader, and as a human being. (P.S. If you’re interested, you can read the full post here.)

2) Empower your workforce

Beyond the care and consideration that can help foster a healthier workplace environment, employers can help prevent burnout by providing their staffers with the tools and resources they need to do their jobs efficiently, effectively, and satisfyingly.

In digital advertising specifically, there is ample room for improvement to the tech stack status quo. For programmatic marketers, the campaign process can be a tedious, mind-numbing, time-consuming slog. Part of that comes from the complex and fragmented nature of media buying: an Advertiser Perceptions report found that the average buyer uses nine different platforms over the course of a single campaign. To put that in perspective: on the SpaceX Crew Dragon spacecraft, astronauts piloted the semi-autonomous rocket to the International Space Station using just three large touchscreen panels. And as valuable as the work we do is, digital advertising shouldn’t be harder than flying a rocket to a floating laboratory in the middle of space.

However, there is one key thing that the future of digital advertising and the future of space travel have in common: leveraging automation to empower users. By embracing the possibilities afforded by advertising automation, marketers can tap into new efficiencies that both save time and money, and can create a more employee-friendly job experience.

Automated functionality like inventory forecasting, bid multipliers, algorithmic pacing, machine learning optimization, group budget optimization, bid shading, automated billing, and automated dashboard reporting can combine with convenience features like trend benchmarking, inventory forecasting, inventory directories, in-platform communications, and unified reporting to create a simpler, more streamlined, and more enjoyable job experience for media buyers.

The impact of this type of tech is measurable, both in terms of economic ROI and job satisfaction. For instance, according to a recent study conducted by Directions Research, built-in automation tools and tactics within Basis simplify the campaign process and save users an average of 51 hours per campaign. That’s equal to six-and-a-half workdays—time that agencies can spend on more high-value endeavors (with higher hourly billing rates) and that media buyers can spend on more satisfying tasks like creative, strategy, planning...or themselves. And because of those automation-driven efficiencies, 80% of the advertising automation and media buying platform’s users agree that it makes their jobs easier.

Investing in the right tech can be daunting, but investing in the right tech can make for a more rewarding workplace (and, incidentally, a more profitable one).

Burnout and Media Buying: Next Steps

Burnout is a beast, and the digital advertising industry is far from immune to its wrath. The campaign process is in-depth, complex, and relentless, and today’s marketers are asked to deliver more ROI despite spending large chunks of their weeks on small, repetitive tasks. Add in external economic pressures and top it off with global instability, and you’ve got yourself a workforce that’s often burning the candle and both ends under what feels like a rocket booster. 

By leading with empathy and empowering media buyers with the right tools, agencies can help protect their employees and prevent burnout from setting in. And who wouldn’t want to work somewhere with a promise like that?

It can be difficult to understand how a given platform can impact a team’s day-to-day work and overall output. So Basis Technologies partnered with Directions Research to study how our platform can help marketers streamline the campaign process. Curious about the results? Check out our report to see how Basis simplifies digital advertising.

linkedin facebook pinterest youtube rss twitter instagram facebook-blank rss-blank linkedin-blank pinterest youtube twitter instagram