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Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Improve Digital publishes first ‘market map’ of European online display advertising industry

Publishers struggling to tell their ad networks from their ad exchanges and their DSPs from their agency trading desks have a new tool to help them keep pace with the sub-sectors of the online advertising world. In response to frequent customer requests, Improve Digital (the largest European sell side platform, or yield optimiser) has gathered information from its offices and partners in the UK and Europe and mapped the current European online display advertising ecosystem1.

'2010 – Display Advertising Market Map Europe', which includes definitions of the various industry sub-sectors, is available to download for free from: http://www.improvedigital.com/market-map-2010

Digital advertising continues to benefit from sophisticated technology that enables increasing effectiveness. As a result, more and more players have entered the market, while others have been taken over by the larger players. A specialist in the sector, Improve Digital is regularly asked to clarify the roles played and the relationships between companies in the industry. With a map already available on the US market (courtesy of GCA Savian), Improve Digital believed an equivalent of the European landscape was required.

This decision was reinforced by the findings of a survey carried out by Improve Digital earlier this year. This revealed that 90 percent of publishers believe that if digital marketing is to reach its potential, the sector must ensure that it provides comprehensive information that is easily understood by people outside the industry. Even those within the sector feel that information is not always forthcoming – nearly a quarter for example said that the difference between an ad exchange and an ad network is not clear.

“The online display advertising market has changed beyond all recognition over the past few years,” explains JoĆ«lle Frijters, CEO of Improve Digital. “This is good news because it encourages all-important innovation, but it can make it difficult to understand the complexities, even for people working in the industry. The US market map has proved popular and useful, and we wanted to make it equally easy to have an 'at a glance' view of the European ecosystem. At the same time, the dynamic nature of the sector means that the positioning of the different players changes fast and on a continuous basis, so this is very much a ‘snapshot’ of the current situation, as perceived by various partners and premium publishers in the market.”

Note 1: The current version of ‘2010 – Display Advertising Market Map Europe’ has been prepared gathering information and knowledge from Improve Digital’s largest publishers and demand partners in the UK and Europe. Special thanks to Elevage Media, Sembassy and Market Edge.