BALI: Brand safety is a major concern for advertisers across Asia, with many brands starting to lose trust in digital advertising, new research suggests.

According to Niall Hogan, South East Asia managing director at measurement and analytics firm Integral Ad Science (IAS), trust in the digital advertising industry is fast diminishing and stakeholders – from ad agencies to tech companies – must step up to the responsibility of addressing the needs of advertisers.

“Those kinds of things, when they hit the front page – particularly things like Facebook where clients have invested so much of their budget – it’s diminishing the client’s trust in digital advertising,” Hogan said at the Asia Pacific Media Forum in Bali, Indonesia recently. (For more details, read WARC’s report: Brand safety and viewability remain concerns in Asia.)

“Brand safety, for marketers and advertisers, is right up there as a concern that we as digital experts need to address on their behalf,” Hogan stated, sharing that he is seeing a new dynamic emerging in today’s climate “where advertisers are so tuned in to brand safety news” that they expect more to be done.

Alluding to programmatic as “the long tail of the web” with its “billions of impressions that are available every single day… (across) millions of websites”, Hogan said that switching from “buying contextually” and “buying individual websites” to targeting with programmatic, in turn opens up advertisers to brand risk.

Media quality plays a big part in ensuring advertiser needs are met, said Hogan, who referred to Integral Ad Science’s recently released H2 2017 Media Quality Report: the overall brand risk across all buy types in Southeast Asia, Hong Kong and Taiwan for the second half of 2017 was 3.5%, placing these markets below the global average of 7.9%. However, Indonesia (9.1%) and Thailand (8.6%) had markedly higher brand risks compared to Malaysia (2.2%) and Singapore (2.5%).

“When you’re buying programmatically, your ad could appear on any one of billions of impressions that’s available to the bidder, so the risk is inherently higher,” Hogan said, adding that these websites might well extend to those with pornographic or fake news content.

“We have the risk to be associated with websites we’re probably not familiar with or brands that we’re probably not familiar with”.

Sourced from WARC