Despite complaints over a lack of transparency, programmatic is growing fast in Asia and marketing professionals need to be ready to explore its new frontiers, an industry figure says.

A recent report by BCG, covering the five markets of Australia, China, India, Japan, as well as a group of SEA countries that use Singapore as a buying and selling hub, forecast that programmatic’s share of the total digital display and video ad market will rise from 19% to 36% between 2017 and 2020.

And according to Alvin Wong, Regional Director – South East Asia for marketing software company dataxu, media agencies across the region are assessing the implications for their business.

Writing for WARC, he highlights several markets where dataxu’s own research has shown that a significant proportion of agencies – Australia (21%), Korea (26%) and India (32%) – believe that learning more about emerging formats is the top skill they need to remain of high value to their clients.

“One excellent example of such an emerging format would be Advanced TV,” he says. (For more, read the full article: How brands can navigate Asia’s programmatic landscape.)

Programmatic TV is growing in prominence, he notes, and is valued particularly for its ability to target ads to specific households defined by digital audience segments, and this is the case across the markets of Singapore, Australia, Korea and India.

Something else to take note of, if you are to master programmatic, he adds, is ‘programmatic guaranteed’.

This is poised to become a fast-rising driver of the growth of programmatic, with penetration expected to nearly double in APAC markets by 2020.

Digital out of home (OOH) is another area that is changing fast as the transition from classic print billboards to digital screens gather pace. In Australia, for example, the spread of digital screens has enabled the OOH industry to increase its audience by 23% over the past seven years.

While the opportunities are there and many agencies are already investing in programmatic, dataxu’s research suggests, however, that few are entirely confident of their capabilities in this area.

And while investment in training and skills may be necessary, Wong cautions against a focus on mastering emerging formats at the expense of losing sight of creativity and innovation.

By using features such as dynamic creative optimisation, he argues, “data and creativity can come together like never before, making brand stories more engaging, relevant, and contextual, and driving greater returns for marketers”.

Sourced from WARC