Ensuring quality inventory and mitigating ad fraud have become key components of executing any marketing campaign. No wonder: up to 28% of tablet app video ad impressions and 23% of smartphone app display ad impressions are estimated to be invalid.1 And only 55% of programmatic video ad impressions are estimated to be viewable.2 Ad fraud has gotten so pervasive that the FBI is now involved, charging eight people with running a multimillion-dollar online ad scam this past November.3
The uphill battle with fraudsters takes away time marketers can devote to the next big idea and low quality inventory can have a direct impact on revenue. It is painstaking work for media buyers and ad operations teams to vet inventory. In a survey conducted by Ad Lightning, nearly three-fifths of ad operations professionals in the US say that the difficulty in tracking down bad actors in the supply chain is a significant problem – and two-fifths note that ad tech solutions don’t scan every ad for issues and don’t block bad ads.4
At RhythmOne, we make this a top priority. We are consistently evolving our performance algorithms to better predict metrics through our proprietary brand safety detection technology, RhythmGuard. RhythmGuard, which sits at the heart of our programmatic platform, leverages supply-side block lists and traffic scoring algorithms built from first- and third-party verification data to screen every impression pre-bid and post-bid. This helps to ensure we facilitate the selling and buying of the highest quality inventory.
Most recently, in our drive to remove suspicious and underperforming traffic before it ever enters a campaign, we have enhanced our ability to predict metrics such as viewability, invalid traffic (IVT), video conversion rate (VCR), and click-through rate (CTR) across connected TVs (CTV), desktops, tablets, and smartphones.
Through our proprietary machine learning algorithms, we are able to improve our precision in predicting how likely a display or video ad request coming into our supply platform is viewable, invalid, or likely to convert. Previously, our algorithms evaluated three to five bid request attributes. Today, we have trained our algorithms to evaluate more data points on a scale of 4x-5x (analyzing 15-20 attributes) to determine whether an impression will meet a client’s quality requirements. Internal tests show up to a 15% accuracy lift and 13% invalid traffic reduction across our inventory supply.
Along with this new and evolving approach, we will continue to focus on data-driven decision making to improve the outcomes for all of our publisher and advertiser partners.
1 Pixalate, “Q2 2018 Programmatic Quality Report,” July 24, 2018 (Link)
2 Comscore (via eMarketer), “Comscore validated Campaign Essentials (vCE) Benchmarks,” April 20, 2018. (Link)
3 Department of Justice, “Two International Cybercriminal Rings Dismantled and Eight Defendants Indicted for Causing Tens of Millions of Dollars in Losses in Digital
Advertising Fraud,” November 27, 2018. (Link)
4 Ad Lightning (via eMarketer), “The Ad Ops: Top 5 List for 2018,” June 5, 2018. (Link)
This article contains forward-looking statements. In some cases, you can identify forward-looking statements by the words “may,” “will,” “expect,” “intend,” “plan,” “objective,” “anticipate,” “believe,” “estimate,” “predict,” “project,” “potential,” “continue” and “ongoing,” or the negative of these terms, or other comparable terminology intended to identify statements about the future. All statements other than statements of historical fact are statements that could be forward-looking statements, including, but not limited to, statements about the potential and effectiveness of RhythmGuard. These forward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties, assumptions and other factors that could cause actual results and the timing of events to differ materially from future results that are expressed or implied in the forward-looking statements. Factors that could cause or contribute to such differences include the dynamic and rapidly evolving sector, as well as the highly competitive industry that RhythmOne operates in, which make it difficult to evaluate prospects. These and other risk factors are discussed in RhythmOne’s Annual Report for the period ended March 31, 2018. The forward-looking statements in this press release are based on information available to RhythmOne as of the date hereof, and we assume no obligation to update any forward-looking statements.