AdTech Singapore 2015

AdTech Singapore in my humble opinion is an absolute success story. The learnings I have taken away and the new friends I have made is enough to keep me happy for the next 6 months.

By means of my self-declared awesome eye-balling abilities, the event hosted a good 600++ delegates, many of whom flew in from all over the world. If there is any other event that can perform half as well as ATS and put all the major players across the industry in one room fuelled with engaging content, please let me know!

It is great to see Corporates taking the initiative to part take in discussions around programmatic, and exhibit a willingness to embrace change. I particularly liked the discussion around how clients could work at bringing/building an AdTech stack in-house. This is something that everyone should be clear about here. Clients are getting curious and investing in self-education. Hence, transparency does go a long way.

Overall, programmatic is the talk of the event. However, the subject of data took a deeper dive to show just how much importance it carries along with automation.

I don’t know if you’ve noticed. But the fact that AdTech has built a name for itself in the marketing ecosystem within a span of just 3 years (in Asia), I see a phenomenon of serious tunnel vision.

Technology seems to have taken over human touch. It has become so linear that binary and logic now seem to be the fundamentals of marketing.

I’ve always thought that AdTech is a subset of marketing, and eventually the collision between AdTech and Martech would take place. Great! More acronyms. How exciting! We haven’t heard much about the big boys like Oracle, IBM, Adobe. Guess what? We should start seeing a shift soon.

I’m glad this was discussed during ATS, as it makes total sense that silo players forge partnerships and make this eco-system a case of value giving, than monopoly.

After some intense jam packed content during ATS, I’ve finally been able to align my fragmented thoughts and put them in point form below.

Trends which May, Can or are Already happening 2015 – 2016

1) Lopsided effect (Demand vs Supply)

– New technology requires sales adoption. We have seen an influx of countless DSPs entering the market in hopes to grab a share of the pie. Internally, this means beefing up sales team, deploying them to approach ATDs and Direct Clients. Education of programmatic was rampant late 2014 – present. Traction across buy side gains momentum, but soon the realisation that the lack of supply could be a teething issue.

– This applies to organisations with fresh injection of funds that are looking to scale quick. Aggressive hiring of sales people, lack of vision that operations play an important role as well. 10 sales person to 1 campaign manager. Good luck.

2) Being Publisher centric 

– AdTech companies will evolve. DSP will not remain a DSP. Whichever way they wish to evolve, I’m seeing a shift in awareness for such platforms to get closer to the publishers. Self-serve platforms are already out there for Publishers.

3) Direct Deals

– Publishers and Brands are getting more educated and are investigating opportunities in PMP or Programmatic Direct. This pendulum effect where knowledge and activity shifts from agencies to in-house may happen very quickly.

4) Merger and Acquisitions

– We just got started. The $4.4billion deal between Verizon and AOL will trigger more to follow suit. Telecommunication companies are keeping their eyes wide open. There are already talks about AOL looking to acquire Millennial Media. Well, let’s see.

5) Branding could use Programmatic

– Programmatic is not all performance. For example, Cannes recently reported that Heineken is looking to use data to better understand its customers. Given that their business uses a three-tier system (Heineken sells to wholesalers, that sells to retailers and finally consumers), they aren’t exactly strong owners of first party data.

– However, working with data providers and AdTech vendors, they could essentially leverage on these data to better understand customers’ buying behaviour. Putting all these information together, generating a compelling creative and branding campaign could influence how well their brand awareness campaigns perform.

6) MarTech will emerge strong

– A one stop shop will present itself. A fully automated platform such as Adobe, Oracle, Marketo will continue to demonstrate capabilities in their technology, inching closer to clients.

As stated by Scott Brinker, president and CTO of ion interactive in his article on marketingland.com, the number of MarTech companies doubled to 2,000 in year 2015, from 947 in year 2014.

MarTech may form to be the foundation as a platform and allow AdTech players to integrate. With data being the core of it all, this brings us back to my first article about creating an Omni-Channel approach.

I don’t know about you, but i am still sticking to my earlier thoughts. Omni-channel. The market at present is going through a self-exploration stage. Eventually, data, programmatic, creative, out-of-home, tv, radio and every other channel we can think of will come together as one.

Seamlessly, creating great campaigns, paving the way for a better marketing ecosystem.

Signing off,

Alvin

“Change is the only constant”


Alvin Lim is our Nakama Singapore Digital Media Consultant who specializes in talent management within the Programmatic Media and Performance Marketing space. 

He represents the major DSPs, SSPs, Trading Desk, Social Media Tech platforms and many other brands in the Advertising Technology space in hiring top tier talents in Singapore and across Asia. Alvin can be reached on +65 94501337 or alim@nakamasingapore.com.

Meet our new NAKAMA Singapore consultant Alvin

Name: Alvin Lim

Title: Senior Consultant – Programmatic & Search

Sector you recruit for: Advertising Technology

What are you known for professionally?

The digital “journey man” – Which is a great nickname to have, since we are in the business of helping people grow and progress in their careers. It is always comforting to know there is someone out there who understands what you do, and can help get you from where you are now, to where you want to be in future.

The people I have had the honor to work with throughout my career would describe me as an empathetic consultant with a strong focus on personal touch.

What do you have a knack for?

Piecing puzzles! I’m quick to grasp new ideas, make sense of it, and identify pockets of opportunities. Throw me a bunch of ideas and I can help align the stars for you!

Where can we find you when you’re not working?

The local coffee shop enjoying my daily joe!

What would be impossible for you to give up?

SLEEP!

Any secret/special talents?

I’m a self proclaimed bed tester and coffee sommelier. No, REALLY.

If you’re a candidate looking for Search/Programmatic work in Singapore, or a client looking for help resourcing your team, Alvin Lim can be reached: +65 9450 1337 or  alim@nakamasingapore.com