AOL CEOdebuted the Web giant"s new programmatic ad platform, AOL ONE, in a keynote speech at ad:tech San Francisco with some pretty hefty predictions.
Global CEO of AOL Platforms Bob Lord presented the new product with a promise to cut through the chaos of the Internet to deliver ads where they will be most useful.
This chaos is an inefficiency that can eat up to 45 percent of money going to publishers. Lord estimates that"s $100 billion that could be used better.
“ONE is our vision for a platform that aims to more simply and powerfully connect brands and their audiences and dramatically reduce the tech tax that plagues our industry,” Lord said.
“When launched later this year, ONE will be the industry"s most sophisticated programmatic platform that spans ever screen, every format and every kind of inventory.”
“Programmatic” is the industry"s new buzzword, tech that"s supposed to revolutionize the world of advertising.
Until recently, much of the Web"s ad content has been placed manually. Programmatic platforms aim to automate the world of digital advertising much like how high frequency trading has mechanized the world of finance. Lord predicted programmatics will influence 75 percent of all digital ad buying by 2015.
ONE aims to unify all the digital and traditional media buying through the AOL platform. The system promises to give advertisers simple tools to buy ads and powerful analytics to review the effectiveness of campaigns. A main key to ONE is a new acquisition by AOL, Adap.TV, a video ad buying platform.
With these big promises, AOL has set itself against some pretty big players in the digital space. Google and Yahoo both serve up digital advertising, and have programmatic efforts of their own. In fact, a Yahoo VP, Dennis Buchheim, just spoke at an ad:tech session centered around programmatic advertising.
Comcast has also been moving toward the online video ad space with a recent acquisition of an Adap.TV rival, FreeWheel. With its ownership of NBC Universal and FreeWheel"s deals with Fox and ESPN, Comcast has grabbed some of the best and most lucrative content on the Web or TV.
But AOL ONE has some pretty big guns in its corner with support from media buyer and IPG subsidiary Mediabrands, which will now buy through ONE.
With programmatic advertising being so new, it"s hard to say who might come out on top of this booming industry. Data matters a lot in this race, and Google, Yahoo and Comcast all have access to tons of data with all the millions of subscribers who use their services.
But it"s much more about how these companies use this data than how much data they have. If AOL ONE can prove to ad buyers it is the smarter choice to place ads, AOL could find itself as prominent and profitable an exchange as Wall Street.
This article is part of Allvoices’ series on ad:tech, the largest, longest-running digital marketing and technology event. Check out allvoices.com/adtech for more of Allvoices’ ad:tech coverage. This series is supported by ad:tech.