The Future Will Be Curated

Ted Smith, Head of Enterprise Sales at Audigent, connected with ExchangeWire for their deep dive with The MediaGrid to discuss how curation has and will continue to drive success for programmatic teams in both current and post-cookie environments.


How have you implemented curation into your own strategies/solutions, and  what impact has this had?

Ted Smith: It’s been obvious for a while that the feedback loop between data originators and  programmatic buyers is broken. The traditional model of pushing data into a data-management platform  (DMP) poses issues, because there is little to no opportunity for buyers to optimize the composition of  their audience segments mid-flight in order to drive better performance.  

As a data originator ourselves, we began looking to fix this issue back in 2018. When Google announced  that it had plans to deprecate the cookie, it provided us with the perfect opportunity to take a leadership  position in cookieless targeting through curation. Because we work so closely with our publisher partners,  we can take a different approach to how we action first-party audiences through the supply path, then  leverage a data bridge between buy-side and sell-side signals to optimize performance in real-time.  

Google’s delay has allowed advertisers to invest critical time and budget towards proving our cookieless  solutions while there remains a bit of a safety net. We see curation as the future, and the recent growth  and maturation of the category only confirms this theory. By breaking down walls in the supply chain, and powering data and inventory curation, we have seen both the value and impact of every impression increase. 


How do you think curation will shape the programmatic landscape once we reach the post-cookie era?

Ted Smith: Curation solves several issues that are top-of-mind for programmatic practitioners. A lot of  the concern in the market right now is about whether cookies are used in data collection, and everyone is  ignoring the data activation process. The truth is, you can gather data without cookies and then activate it in ways that are, from a privacy perspective, completely unsafe. Right now, everyone is describing their  products as cookieless, but that’s table stakes for the future.  

What's equally important is maintaining privacy and consumer friendliness. Curation solves that issue.  Because curated marketplaces are activated on the supply-side, they can avoid the bidstream data  leakage that is prevalent in the programmatic landscape right now. By embracing curation, not only will  programmatic ad buyers get better performance and campaign outcomes, but they’ll also help clean up the ecosystem. 

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