Altitude’s Programmatic Advertising Deconstructed series will clarify common misconceptions surrounding programmatic.
Much of the industry’s confusion stems from programmatic’s simple yet encompassing definition.
The current Ad Tech world is really just an extension of the traditional two-party system of buyers interacting with sellers. However, as the Internet and advertising space grew, an oversupply dilemma was created, with as much as 40-60% of publisher inventory going unsold.
Ad Networks: An advertising network aggregates, categorizes and sells publisher inventory in a way that can be easily understood and purchased by advertisers on a fixed CPM basis. As online advertising space grew exponentially, an automated marketplace became necessary to allow publishers and advertisers to manage their transactions and performance at scale. Supply-Side Platform (SSP):  A Supply-Side Platform (SSP) is a system that allows publishers to manage, sell and optimize inventory in an automated fashion. Demand-Side Platform (DSP):  Analogous to a SSP, a Demand-Side Platform (DSP) is used by advertisers and agencies to manage and purchase inventory from multiple ad networks through one interface.
Agency Trading Desk: Agency Trading Desks (ATDs) are independent entities working on behalf of media buyers.
Ad Exchanges are a step above ad networks in that they facilitate the buying and selling of inventory from multiple ad networks simultaneously. Using an Ad Exchange, publishers can auction their inventory to the highest bidder through a single interface. As you can see, the current Ad Tech landscape is really just an extension of the traditional two-party system between advertisers and publishers.
Hopefully you now have a high-level understanding of the programmatic ecosystem, including its historical perspective, technology components and deal types. TechCrunch takes a look at the launch of Altitude ARENA®—the industry's first fully white-labeled, self-service Programmatic Video Platform that gives publishers complete control over their mobile and desktop video inventory. The industry will continue to strengthen the programmatic foundation in 2016 through acquisitions, infrastructure, and transparency.
The media landscape is cluttered with a seeming overabundance of ad networks.  The proliferation of ad networks has occurred over the past five years with counts as high as 300.
The question now becomes what is the future of the marketplace.  Will ad networks and ad exchanges co-exist? The benefits of the ad exchanges seem to outweigh the drawbacks, so it appears they are here to stay and will continue to gain share from the ad networks.  As a result, many predict that there will be a shakeout in the ad network space.  What will it take for networks to survive? Please note: this includes my own opinions and experience with these networks, research I have done, feedback from other bloggers as well as information from the ad networks themselves. Tiers – this is how I classify the Ad Networks for the purpose of setting up Backfill Waterfalls so I can maximize the income I earn from ads. Exclusive vs Non Exclusive Ad Networks – Exclusive Ad Networks have rules that limit your ability to work with other Ad Networks and they pay for this privilege with higher CPMs.
Acceptance – not just acceptance criteria of the Ad Networks but also how many blogs are signed up each month.
Very Hard – Can takes months, even a year, for acceptance, and that’s only if the Ad Network the quality of your blog meets their standards. Hard – Ad Network has fairly high standards for acceptance, not just around quality of content and website appearance but also (sometimes) things such as frequency of posting (eg. Medium – Only accepts blogs that meet their standard requirement and usually has minimum traffic requirements but the requirements are much lower, for example, 10,000 views per month. Easy – Acceptance period is usually very fast (almost instantaneous in the case of Ad Sense) and not picky about blog requirements (including content, style etc). Restrictions – the higher the CPM, the more exclusive the network, the more restrictions there are. Fill Rates – the chart on the right indicates the fill rate % I consider to be low, medium and high. Backfill – whether the Ad Network lets you upload Backfills so when their ads are not displaying your ad space can be used to display ads from other Ad Networks. Defaults means that the Ad Network provides backfills for you using their chosen Ad Network agency.
Probably the most popular Ad Network for Food Bloggers particularly in the US, the network that many new bloggers aspire to join when first starting out. Backfill – at the time of writing BlogHer backfills with Pubmatic, another Ad Network (unless you’ve been with BlogHer for a long time in which case previous backfills you selected can still be used). Restrictions – The base requirement is that BlogHer gets prime real estate on your blog so the ad must be placed above the fold and that you cannot display ads from other Ad Networks above the fold (but you can below the fold or on pages where you are not displaying BlogHer ads). The other key restriction is that you cannot do sponsored posts for competing Ad Networks when you are displaying BlogHer Ads. However, you can get around this because there are WordPress plugins that enables you to control which posts the BlogHer Ads display on. I have only recently joined Glam Media but so far I’ve been very impressed with their professionalism, friendliness and helpfulness. I don’t do sponsored posts so I’m not losing out on that from other Ad Networks (also Glam Media offer a lot of sponsored posts) and this is one of the key concerns of bloggers (from what I have read). Service and Support – I have only joined Glam Media recently and there is little “word on the street” about them.
I’ve applied for Martha’s Circle but do not expect to hear back from them for months, maybe even years!
I have applied but not yet heard back from Platefull and I don’t expect to hear back for months because I understand they rarely ad new blogs.
One of the things I find so appealing about Platefull is that it is not exclusive which means you can work with other ad networks. Acceptance – From what I understand from correspondence with  Cox, they do have a minimum traffic requirement but they exercise some discretion based on content quality, frequency of posting and other variables.
You need traffic of 1 million per month to be accepted by SAY Media – at least, that is the reason I was given for my application being turned down in August 2014. Acceptance – Gourmet Ad is focused on the food industry so your blog needs to be a cooking, recipe or food site.
Requirements – able to display at least 1 ad above the fold, and not allowed to have any stacked ads (ads next to each other without something in between – even social media icons is ok) on any page.
The first thing I need to qualify is that I have Ad Sense classified as Tier 3 because of my personal experience with them and because generally, from the research I have done, most food bloggers do not do that well with Ad Sense because readers aren’t very clicky and Ad Sense pays on a Cost Per Click (CPC) basis (as opposed to CPM which pays a rate for every 1,000 views of your website).
So I guess in short, I want to stress that Ad Sense isn’t great for me, but maybe it will work well for you if you have a clicky audience. With CPC ads, remember to place them somewhere where people are likely to see and click on them.
This Ad Network is on my list because I know they are a decent size player but for whatever reason, they didn’t work out for me.
I believe you can make great food with everyday ingredients even if you’re short on time and cost conscious.
As a follow up to Justina€™s recent post on ad network bullshitting, we thought wea€™d share with you a more comprehensive list of mobile advertising networks that facilitate buying, selling or exchanging mobile traffic in some form.For our own internal competitive analysis, we track over 100 various mobile app and web ad companies. Richard is the Global Marketing Director for PapayaMobile, a cross platform social gaming network for Android and iOS.
In many traditional mobile networking scenarios, nodes establish communication on the basis of public identities. Due to the lack of forwarding infrastructure, MANET nodes have to rely on each other in forwarding traffic. Unlikethe Internet or other forms of wireless networks most MANETs don't have a fixed on-line security infrastructure.
Group Signatures: Group signatures can be viewed as traditional public key signatures with additional privacy features.
This important feature is referred to as Escrowed Anonymity or, equivalently, Conditional Anonymity. Threshold Signatures: A threshold signature involves a fixed-size quorum (threshold) of signers. Sequential Aggregate Signatures: A sequential aggregate signature (SAS) represents a certain number of signers signing a given message. Distance Bounding: Distance bounding protocols are cryptographic protocols that enable a verifier (V) to establish an upper bound on the physical distance to a prover (P). Karim El Defrawy, Gene Tsudik, "Anonymous Location Aided Routing in Suspicious MANETs", IEEE Transactions on Mobile Computing (IEEE TMC), Vol. Karim El Defrawy, Gene Tsudik, "Privacy-Preserving Location-Based On-Demand Routing in MANETs", IEEE Journal of Selected Areas of Communication (IEEE JSAC), Vol. Srdjan Capkun, Karim El Defrawy and Gene Tsudik, "Group Distance Bounding Protocols", The 4th International Conference on Trust and Trustworthy Computing (TRUST 2011). Karim El Defrawy and Gene Tsudik, "PRISM: Privacy-friendly Routing In Suspicious MANETs (and VANETs)", The 2008 IEEE International Conference of Network Protocols (ICNP'08), October 19-22, Florida, USA.
Karim El Defrawy, Gene Tsudik, "ALARM: Anonymous Location Aided Routing in Suspicious MANETS", The 2007 IEEE International Conference of Network Protocols (ICNP'07), October 16-19, Beijing, China.
Karim El Defrawy, Gene Tsudik, "Anonymous Location Aided Routing in Suspicious MANETs", Technical Report. A more complete collection of links and bibliography on group signatures can be found here and here. When an advertising network is turned off and traffic plummets (top) while conversions stay steady (bottom), investigators have pinpointed fraudulent ad traffic.

A brand manager at a medical device company was examining a chart of daily traffic to his website.
His counterpart, Augustine Fou, a digital marketing consultant, returned the nods and grinned. Fou’s “bad guys” are yet another incarnation of Internet scammers, sharing certain characteristics with more familiar foes such as email spammers and phishers. Fou’s clients install a small piece of code on their websites, which tracks and analyzes the traffic into these properties. The medical-device company spends multiple millions of dollars on digital advertising each year. For every thousand ad impressions delivered to browsers, the advertiser pays DeepNet one dollar. Now, imagine DeepNet is infected with fake websites, which compete for the advertisers’ dollars, side by side with legitimate websites. Only large-scale, deep-pocketed publishers, such as the New York Times, can afford a direct sales staff. Though relied upon for traffic, some of the advertising networks themselves are uncontrolled and opaque.
With the proliferation of cloud services, such as Amazon’s EC2, almost anyone can install a website, register it with an ad network, and start earning dollars from advertisers. Predictably, the bad guys have written code to generate hundreds or thousands of fake sites. Even though it’s easy to see the problem and measure the problem, but the problem persists.
Changing the business model from tracking ad impressions to counting click-throughs won’t work, either. But perhaps the most insidious reason the problem is growing, unabated, is because of the disincentives to fix it. Also, this illicit activity generates unintended profits for everyone up and down the supply chain. It will also provide insight for publishers and advertisers trying to maximize campaign performance using its various automated technologies throughout future installments. In traditional (direct) two-party transactions, agency media planners work directly with publishers to execute a media buy.
At the same time, advertisers were having trouble reaching their target audiences efficiently, often resorting to conducting offline deals with multiple publishers.
By aggregating inventory, Ad Networks offer advertisers the ability to better reach their target audience while allowing publishers to sell their remnant inventory more effectively. DSPs allow advertisers to buy impressions across a range of publisher sites, but targeted to specific users based on information such as their location and browsing behavior.
They utilize DSPs and other technologies to optimize programmatic, bid-based media and audience buying. Ad exchanges enable Real-Time Bidding (RTB) on individual impressions by utilizing the automated DSP and SSP technologies that we covered previously. Buyers, on the other hand, can access inventory from thousands of publishers (through the many ad networks) in one place, giving them exponentially more reach than any single ad network could.
An Ad Exchange, on the other hand, collects inventory from several publisher sites and exchanges simultaneously and auctions it off at the impression-level in a RTB environment. In the next installment, we will examine the different types of programmatic transactions that occur using these systems. However, there is still a long road ahead until traditional media fully embraces programmatic. Making the marketplace even more crowded, ad exchanges have emerged over the last 18 months providing access to the same type of inventory that media agencies have historically acquired through ad networks. It is not intended to be an exhaustive list of all the ad networks out there that are suitable for Food Bloggers.
But you need to know the restrictions of your Exclusive Ad Network because they may will include a list of Ad Networks that you are both permitted to work with or display on the same page as the Exclusive Ad Network ads. Sometimes Ad Networks go through periods when they are not signing up new food blogs so may either increase their criteria (or not sign up new blogs at all), other times they go through patches when they are signing up a lot of new blogs. Rules differ across Ad Networks and I’ve done my best to summarise what I know in the section below where I’ve set out more information about each Ad Network.
For example, I block all Adult ads and I (try) to block ads that play sound automatically (because I think that will annoy my readers). BlogHer seems to go through periods when there is a waiting list and other times application review periods are very fast (mine was in a week).
But the online advertising industry is now moving to a new concept called viewability (a measure of how viewed an ad is by a visitor to your site) so you are now allowed to place an ad below the fold if it improves your view-ability %.
Fair enough – if BlogHer clients pay for an ad to be displayed on your blog then they shouldn’t have to worry about their ad appearing beside a post you are paid to write promoting the product of another Ad Network’s client. Their exclusivity terms are slightly more stringent than other Tier 1 Ad Networks and there are bloggers who have been turned off this. And because I have signed up to quite a number of Ad Networks, I have plenty of Ad Networks that I can still work with that are not on Glam Media’s black out list. Glam Media have a list of competitor Ad Networks that you are not allowed to work with (advertising and sponsorship, editorial is fine) which is updated from time to time.
I understand that they are currently not accepting new food blogs and they are currently focusing on wedding blogs. Not just because of criteria but also because they are currently not accepting new food blogs.
I haven’t been able to find out very much about Platefull but from what I have read, the CPM is consistently $2.50+ and the fill rate fluctuates a lot from Low to Medium High. You get live reporting, they actually respond to emails on a timely basis and they’re professional in their approach.
Not exactly sure of the number but a blog with traffic of 10,000 per month won’t be accepted. Once you sign up you’ll get a rep and my rep is really friendly, helpful and responds to emails quickly. So I haven’t spent much time looking into this Ad Network but from what I have been able to find on forums, fill rates and CPM fluctuate a lot from blog to blog and depends on ad unit size and type. I also read that the CPM is (adversely) impacted if it is used as a pass back instead of as a primary (Tier 1) ad.
Putting them in the footer is no good on most websites – unless yours has a particularly interesting footer and your readers are likely to scroll all the way down to the bottom. I tried them both as a first call ad as well as a backfill, and for both the fill rates for absolutely dismal. So if your blog is starting out OR if you plan to use them as a backfill, then based on my personal experience, don’t bother. It might be audience demographics, keywords in your blog, your blog focus, the time of day you get the most traffic. If you want to learn more, you might be interest in this post I did on How To Maximise Ad Revenue With a Backfill Waterfall. He has six yearsa€™ experience successfully marketing global digital and mobile brands in the Europe, Asia and the US. However, in some settings, node identities must not be exposed and node movements should not be traceable. We propose new techniques to securely verify locations of nodes in group settings using distance bounding protocols (Group Distance Bounding). Anysolutionrelying on on-line trusted third parties will thus be challenging to implement and operate.
In a group signature scheme, any member of a (potentially large and dynamic) group can sign a message, producing a group signature. Such protocols are based on timing the delay between sending out challenge bits and receiving back the corresponding response bits.
Dissertation, Bren School of Information and Computer Science, University of California Irvine. On the chart he saw that one day in August, web traffic plunged, and locked in at a new normal about half of its previous level. If they did, then the lost traffic was “human” because a predictable proportion of true site visitors is expected to respond to the advertiser’s call to action.
Marketing managers pay close attention to the “referrer.” Examples of referrers are a search engine, a blog post, and a Facebook message. The fake visitors inflated the traffic statistics but contributed nothing to conversions, which stayed steady even after the traffic plummeted (bottom chart). In the display advertising world, advertisers pay by thousands of ad impressions, denoted CPM (cost per thousand).
Traffic reports from DeepNet indicate that lots of people have seen the display ads but in fact, a large portion of these “eyeballs” aren’t real.
The bad guys write code that generates fake websites, typically simple webpages stuffed with banner ads and then start collecting on ad impressions, most of which aren’t even real humans visiting the site.
Using a visual clustering algorithm, Fou can find these code-generated sites, many of which look reasonably generic and identical. If and when the industry gets serious about combating fraud, a technological rat race will develop, similar to the one between spammers and anti-spammers. In fact, a similar scheme to the one described here infects the equally vast search advertising market.

In the scenario above, the $2.4 million monthly revenue represented only 40% of the money generated. And, by Fou’s estimate, half of the $50-billion digital marketing industry will remain fraudulent. A deal was typically negotiated in person or over the phone for a set number of impressions at a set price.
The primary goal of an Agency Trading Desk is to help clients improve their advertising performance and receive increased value from their ad buys. These are the ones that I use, know are popular with other food bloggers, or ones that I have tried but decided not to sign up to, or tied and ditched. It comes down to demand and supply – what type of ads Ad Network clients are buying and whether the Ad Network has enough publishers (blogs) to display the ads on in the timeframe the clients require, the sector and target audience etc. Some have minimum traffic requirements of 30k+ per day which I think is a fairly high bar (that’s almost 1 million per month). All Ad Networks have some restrictions, whether it be where you must place the ad(s), what other Ad Network ads you can display at the same time (and where), or how many ads you can display. You can find out more about how to maximise your ad revenue instantly with 4 easy steps in this post I did explaining How to Set Up a Backfill Waterfall.
If your blog is new or in progress, I strongly recommend waiting before applying because if you apply and are turned down, you need to wait another 6 months before reapplying. The reason I chose Glam Media is because while they do have tighter exclusivity terms but they pay for this privilege.
I am told that the wait list is typically not as long as BlogHer. My application was approved in a week.
The list includes the other Tier 1 Ad Networks as well as some of the Tier 2 Networks plus other online networks and publications. I’ve heard of some bloggers having great success with them, but it seems to me that it needs quite close monitoring. The only gripe I have is that their member’s area on their site is ridiculously slow so editing and checking in on how ads are doing is frustrating. It takes a while to get going so be patient, it took about a week before I started seeing steady impressions. It’s hard to pin down the exact reason why, and I haven’t been able to find an answer or theories anywhere.
The CPM is not great, less than $0.70 on average, but I am told that I can expect this to increase the longer I am with them, or if my blog is specifically selected by clients. But I left them there for a few weeks because I like to give people (and Ad Networks) the benefit of the doubt because sometimes patience is rewarded – like PriceGrabber which started off slow but is now one of my favourite mid tier Ad Networks. He now leads PapayaMobilea€™s global marketing efforts including strategy, branding, mobile marketing, digital, PR and community management with a team of 9 spanning both the US and China.
Our techniques are a generalization of the single prover single verifier distance bounding protocols. MANETs may thus be deployed in hostile environments where adversaries will try to disrupt the operation of the network and compromise the security and privacy of the nodes.
However, given two valid group signatures, it is computationally infeasible to decide whether they are generated by the same or different group member(s). A (t,n) threshold signature scheme supports n potential signers, any t of which can on behalf of the group. An SAS is much shorter (sometimes constant) than the simple collection of individual signatures.
Haas, "Secure Data Communication in Mobile Ad Hoc Networks," IEEE Journal on Selected Areas in Communications (JSAC), Special Issue on Security in Wireless Ad Hoc Networks, February 2006.
For someone responsible for a website’s traffic, the scale and swiftness of the drop should have made him gasp, but the manager nodded knowingly.
They had turned off one of the advertising networks that sent traffic to the site from a patchwork of websites managed by the ad network. These bad guys write computer code designed to illicitly divert a significant chunk of advertising dollars to line their own pockets.
Eventually stepping away from corporate life, Fou started his own practice, focusing on digital marketing fraud investigation.
When used properly, the referrer data inform marketers about the source of incoming traffic, allowing them to optimize spending across different channels. Fake traffic is generated by “bad-guy bots.” A bot is computer code that runs automated tasks. For a given campaign, the manager might spend $100,000 with an advertising network, which we call DeepNet.
Even legitimate publishers frequently send their less desirable “remnant” traffic — traffic that comes in at odd hours, for example, that is unlikely to produce advertiser conversions.
The exchanges are designed to run themselves without much intervention, so the bad guy activities often elude detection.
In some cases, the data say every ad on a site has been clicked—an impossible scenario for a human visiting a site. Currently, pay-per-lead and pay-per-sale models account for only 15 percent of the $50-billion-a-year digital advertising market. Before we analyze each method, it’s important to look at the origin and architecture of machine-based media buying.
For example, some focus on delivering reach and price while others focus on audience demographics and quality.
From the little I have read and heard from other bloggers, I have only heard positive things. Because I haven’t even heard back from them, I have quite limited knowledge about this Ad Network. Secondly we realized quickly there were no definitive lists of all the mobile advertising channels- often they'd be incomplete or out of date, so we hope this list will give you a great starting point if you want a good overview of whoa€™s out there right now. Such scenarios are encountered in mission critical mobile ad-hoc networks (MANETs), Vehicular ad-hoc networks (VANETs) and delay-tolerant-networks (DTNs) and in the near future geo-social mobile networks. Threshold signatures reveal nothing about the t signers; no one can trace the identity of the signers (not even a trusted center who have set up the system). The planned shutdown was a test to confirm a hypothesis about the site’s traffic specifically, and digital marketing in general. In so doing, they destroy the promise that digital advertising has thrived on—that it could make advertising efficient and accountable. In practice, such data are easy to fake and manipulate, causing widespread misallocation of resources.
This was why he advised the client to turn off the network so they could observe any changes to the traffic and conversions. Not long ago, these bots operated from computers taken over by malware but the fraudsters now prefer to generate fake browsing sessions in the cloud, because it’s more efficient. Conservatively, assume 10 ads populate each page, At an 80 percent sell-through, a CPM of 75 cents, and 40-percent revenue share, such a network would generate $2.4 million per month.
The Internet Advertising Board maintains a list of a few hundred known-to-be-nefarious bots, but the number of scam sites is many orders of magnitude larger. If you breach their policies, you are technically in breach of your contract with the Ad Network and could be banned for life. Glam Media requires their ads to be placed above the fold on prime real estate on your blog.
Gourmet Ads is one of the first Ad Networks I signed up to and I still had my training wheels on, and they couldn’t have been nicer, happy to handhold me through the process of set up. Whereas Justina€™s list was focused on those few networks we think are really awesome (including our own app promotion and monetization network a€“ AppFlood), the following list of ad platforms is what we consider to be the top 50 most popular.
In this project, we consider a number of issues arising in such settings by designing anonymous location based routing protocols. Hubaux, "Efficient and Robust Pseudonymous Authentication in VANET," The Fourth ACM Mobicom International Workshop on Vehicular Ad Hoc Networks (VANET), Montréal, QC, Canada, September 2007. The challenge facing fraud investigators like Fou is to distinguish between legitimate bots and bad-guy bots. Each impression is an ad that loads when someone browses a webpage belonging to one of the member websites of DeepNet. Many websites, especially new sites, have come to rely on such advertising revenues as their lifeblood. The profit margin is 99% as it costs only a miniscule 0.13 cents per thousand impressions to implement the scam on reputable cloud services, and even less on lower echelon ones.
Blacklists that block offending sites used to be a popular tool amongst the first generation of spam fighters too, but that approach is known to have unacceptable inaccuracy. DeepNet acts as an exchange on which its members, or publishers in industry-speak, bid for the advertisers’ dollars. They partner with ad networks to deliver better results for publishers.A In addition to publishers, AdMarvel works with a broad range of players in the ad ecosystem to improve the performance of mobile advertising.
ALARM is a link state based protocol which uses nodes' current locations to disseminate and construct topology snapshots.

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