A blockchain pilot program focused on providing brands with greater transparency around digital advertising has reported a significant lift in performance when optimized against programmatic discrepancies.

The study saw adtech firm Lucidity working with the IAB Tech Lab's Blockchain Pilot program and applying its blockchain technology to authenticate a series of campaigns with over a dozen advertisers by adding a transparency layer to brand programmatic media buys.

The resulting aggregate data, detailed in Lucidity’s Ad Transparency Report 2019, claims to be the most complete record of results from a blockchain-powered digital advertising solution to date.

The findings highlight discrepancy rates – which demonstrate the percentage of overall impressions or clicks that weren’t confirmed by the programmatic supply chain and so act as an indicator of harmful activity such as fraud and waste.

High rates of impression discrepancy “plague” programmatic, the report said: some 14% of all impressions served were discrepant, meaning only 86% were confirmed as non-discrepant across the supply chain.

There were even higher rates of click discrepancy, with 48% of clicks flagged as discrepant and only 52% confirmed by the supply chain.

Some of the highest rates of impression discrepancy were found in in-app mobile inventory where nearly a third of in-app mobile impressions were flagged as questionable.

On the plus side, optimizing against discrepancies boosted performance: overall impression match rates improved by 13%, and click match rates improved by an average of 22%.

And when paired with conversion tracking, optimizing against discrepancies improved conversion rates. By eliminating discrepant impressions and clicks, one campaign saw conversion rates increase by over 214%

“Overall, optimizing the campaigns away from placements with high levels of discrepancy that flagged for fraud and waste led to a significant lift in performance,” said Sam Kim, CEO and co-founder at Lucidity.

“Brands deserve to know what they’re paying for. We’re only going to achieve that through transparency and valid data.”

Sourced from Lucidity; additional content by WARC staff