My aim for this programmatic back to basics series is to demystify the wonderful world of programmatic and the key role it plays in driving the digital advertising landscape.

As previously mentioned in the first part of this article series, there is a lot of confusion about how programmatic buying operates and what it means. Due to this, there are many inaccurate beliefs surrounding it.

The focus of this article is exploring these myths – from beliefs that programmatic removes the human touch, through to programmatic being more important than creativity. This article debunks these myths and adds transparency to a mystifying topic to help advertisers better understand this data-driven industry.

Myth 1: Programmatic means targeting

Targeting and programmatic are not synonymous.

Simply put, programmatic means the automated process of purchasing and selling digital ads. It helps automate the decision-making process of media buying by targeting specific audiences using sophisticated technology in a fraction of the time it would take a media buyer usually.

On the other hand, targeting advertising means delivering the right ad to the right user at the right time, this can be done through a number of different methods such as tracking online or mobile activities. Advertisers want to reduce the number of wasted ads, by this, I mean sending ads to people that are not interested. This is essentially why targeted advertising came to fruition.

Myth 2: It’s all about the robots. Programmatic replaces sales teams and media buyers

The human touch is still needed in the programmatic world. Programmatic simply automates the process which enables sales teams to focus on more valuable tasks such as building better relationships with their customers and their teams.

This process has been automated to make media buyers and sales teams more effective workers – allowing them to spend less time on the mundane tasks, and more time on the significant ones. The belief that programmatic replaces sales teams and media buyers is not true. Programmatic buying, in fact, helps empower media buyers and sales teams – a little less buying admin and a little more action. Humans cannot be compared to robots, or replaced. Programmatic buying instead helps steer advertisers away from the more tedious tasks and focus their efforts on more valuable things that drive value.

Myth 3: Programmatic is more important than creative

The two are equally as important and work best collaboratively. It’s all well and good making the media buying process speedier and having the sophisticated technology to do so, but without dazzling creative work, an ad will not keep your target audience engaged. As we add in dynamic creative programmatic this becomes even more exciting.

Case in point: a recent AppNexus study showed what clients think will be the most important capabilities that agencies need to possess in five year’s time. Programmatic knowledge accounted for 65%, and creative work accounted for 57% – showcasing that advertisers suggest the two will be needed in unison. While programmatic knowledge is becoming increasingly commonplace and critical, we must forget the compelling creative work also needed to produce ads to interest your target audiences.

PerformanceIN’s series of channel-centric networking events, Connect, returns to The Fable in Farringdon on May 25, aiming its sights this time on the burgeoning programmatic industry. Register for free here before spaces run out!