B2B media buyers and planners are gaining comfort with programmatic options, per a recently-released survey [download page] from Kantar Media SRDS and Connectiv. Conducted among 150 B2B media buyers and planners with access to the SRDS Business Media Advertising Source, the survey indicates that almost 2 in 3 buy digital display advertising programmatically for B2B campaigns at least sometimes, with roughly one-third doing so often.
Among these respondents, the vast majority (88%) used audience targeting on B2B sites when buying programmatically, with site/content targeting on B2B sites (76%) not far behind. Of note, roughly 2 in 3 used a combination of B2B and consumer sites when buying for B2B campaigns, with only about 1 in 4 relying exclusively on B2B sites.
Overall, close to 2 in 3 respondents said that at least 15% of their 2015 B2B digital display advertising budget was bought programmatically. While that figure is expected to remain relatively steady this year, the B2B display budget share allocated to programmatic is expected to grow as the top end of buyers (those spending at least 60% share of their display budgets on programmatic) increases.
Among the half of respondents expecting to spend more on programmatic buying this year, the largest share (47%) will fund the increase from non-programmatic digital, while one-quarter will use budgets shifted from print.
When evaluating programmatic buying opportunities, those who have already bought programmatically for B2B campaigns said that the most important criteria are audience, inventory quality and site content. Factors such as price and ad position are lower down the list, but are still deemed important by the majority of advertisers.
The study asked all media buyers and planners to evaluate a list of statements regarding programmatic and provide their levels of agreement. Most commonly, respondents agreed that inventory is less expensive than buying direct from the publisher (71% agreeing) and that programmatic diversifies the inventory sources available (67%). The majority also feel that programmatic makes the buying and managing process more efficient (65%) and that it enables them to reach target audiences more efficiently (61%).
There are some signs that publishers aren’t as prepared as media buyers, though. Only a bare majority (52%) of media buyers and planners surveyed agreed that inventory is readily available from publishers, and likewise only 51% said that sales reps are presenting programmatic inventory opportunities.
For B2B advertisers looking at opportunities outside of display, this MarketingCharts report shows the most popular cable TV channels, radio genres and magazine titles among B2B buyers and decision-makers.
A separate MarketingCharts report explores the B2B digital marketing landscape in detail across platforms and channels.
About the Data: The report is based on a survey of 150 B2B media buyers and planners at agencies and advertiser/marketers with access to the SRDS Business Media Advertising Source. To qualify for the study, respondents had to report having researched, recommended, planned or bought B2B Media in the past 12 months as well as current Media Planning or Buying responsibility for B2B Media.