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The 2012 Debate: Will RTB Lift CPMs? I just may have Good News for Many?

ComScore's svp of campaign verification Kirby Winfield says "Real-time bidding CPMs will be flat, at best" (new article today on DigiDay - 2012 Debate: Will RTB Lift CPMs?), and offers the following, as his 1st point:

1. There is a display inventory surplus. A good chunk of display advertising inventory is like factory reject apparel and the exchanges are the outlet mall. It works, it sells, but at the end of the day prices aren’t going up unless quality does.

NOT when you are targeting users?

Perhaps Kirby hasn't yet heard the news? That the already proven highly successful (yet costlier) and much sought after performance marketing 'clicks' (@ scale) - where both audiences and or, individual users are [re-] targeted - based on their 'user intent' as is shown from their RealTime search queries (and that are bought/served, 'on the fly'), WILL BE the game-changing story of 2012.

It's clear that Kirby and Zach (Triggit CEO Zach Coelius, who himself in the debate, contends that in 2012 'we'll continue to see rising CPM's' and offers his reason, as to why), have not heard of keyword optimisation for retargeting?

Zach Coelius points out:

When the real-time bidding exchange first came out three years ago, the average CPM was about twenty cents & only about 20 million impressions a day flowed through the pipes. - Many impressions later, the prevailing CPM is about ten times higher, and now substantially more than twenty billion impressions a day are available through RTB.

For 2012 our forecast is that growth will continue as we see large brand advertisers shifting budgets in the hundreds of millions into exchanges. Those new budgets will push up CPMs and attract more inventories, perpetuating the virtuous cycle

My (two-part) post over on Yahoo Finance's LOOK board [] is mostly based on other such industry expert's 'wants and needs' for 2012.

In the posts I make a very clear point that the frame-work is there for Looksmart to assemble together a totally unique 'quality' publisher base (as I suspect they are in the process of doing so), and that advertisers & agencies (in their knowing, that it will be free of any chance of 'friction' - when buying across a ONE independent/open marketplace) can then get to buy higher 'quality' eCPM type impressions.

This will then be in addition to and as an alternate offer of, Looksmart's higher costing (CPA/CPV) performance approach.

Instead of having to wade through the glut of inventory in exchanges, Looksmart's tech CAN now narrow it down to a (one marketplace) pool of inventory with quality behind it - that always only offers above the fold, brand-safe, name-brand publishers, etc ..That will (no doubt) drive the 'average' eCPMs so much higher, in 2012.

No. Looksmart haven't 'offered' those type (to provide a one-stop-shop') guaranteed, 'quality' impressions for a bulk buy, as yet ...But it would be foolish for anyone (including both Kirby and Zach), to ever consider they won't be within a Looksmart 'two-pronged' plan.

Only an opinion, as always.

LOOK: 4:00PM EST: $1.28  Up 0.04 (+3.23%)


Disclosure: Long LOOK and happy about 2012 approaching.