The concept of Optimization won’t be new to media owners. For years your sales team have been manipulating spreadsheets, using their knowledge and expertise to create the best schedule for advertiser and media owner. But with the introduction of Digital Out-of-Home, the way we buy and sell has become increasingly sophisticated. If you’re still using a spreadsheet or a basic CMS to handle audience-led buying and programmatic, life’s probably getting very complicated. But by powering-up your CMS with an Optimization Engine, media owners can not only make embracing every type of revenue simple, but fully optimized to generate the most revenue from every space you sell.
What is an Optimization Engine
An Optimization Engine is a piece of software that enables real-time scheduling and dynamic rescheduling of every type of OOH booking. Whether it’s a loop-based booking or a programmatic campaign targeting a certain audience, a good Optimization Engine can mix them together. With the help of first and third party data, buyer and commercial rules set by you, the Optimization Engine will decide which campaign should run for maximum revenue, yield and use of space. Better yet, it does this all in real time, responding to new bookings as they happen, right up till the moment of play.
The benefits of an Optimization Engine
Of course, there are many benefits to using an Optimization Engine. The easiest way to describe it is to liken it to something we’re all familiar with: planning a trip before and after the advent of apps like Google Maps and Waze. Before the little blue dot in our pocket, we relied on a paper map or past experience (never asking actual people for directions, obviously) to get from A to B. Like traditional OOH scheduling, just a few simple inputs were needed to build a route – or a schedule – well before you headed off on your journey. Whether you’re talking navigation or OOH scheduling, technically speaking, it’s simple to do.
While we may romanticise those simpler days, missed opportunities abound. If you’d known the weather was about to turn, you might have packed an umbrella. Knowing there were delays for roadworks or traffic on your route might have prompted you to go another way or even take the train. An alert about a schedule change might have left you time to finish your breakfast at home, rather than standing endlessly on the station platform drinking a burnt coffee in the rain. Sure you might have made it to your destination, but was it the best and most efficient use of your precious time?
In this way, Waze and Google Maps have revolutionized the way we travel. By integrating live data about traffic, roadworks, weather and alternative transport options, they help us calculate the best and most efficient route at any given time with the touch of a button. But it’s even better than that. Armed with this live data and the preferences you’ve saved already – like your office location or that you always prefer to drive – these apps are always one step ahead of you. They are constantly checking, responding and re-routing you onto the most efficient path to your destination (even when you find yourself off track).
It’s this kind of intelligence that an Optimization Engine can bring to the way we plan campaigns and schedule Out-of-Home. An Optimization Engine powers up your CMS with the ability to ingest any data source. Whether that’s something as simple as the weather or more interesting like stock levels that trigger ads for fresh produce that’s about to expire and live audience modelling from mobile or transit data. Combining that information with your pre-set commercial preferences, it constantly checks, responds and reschedules your bookings, across every screen in your inventory, in real-time. Like Waze, constantly rerouting us onto the most efficient path, the Optimization Engine will keep shuffling your flexible campaign schedules around your guaranteed ones, even with programmatic campaigns coming in right up until the moment of play. It’s mission? To ensure you accurately hit every campaign goal with no waste, while getting the most revenue, yield and use of every space from every moment on every screen. All without you having to lift a finger.
Optimization is about Revenue Generation
Of course, this isn’t just about efficiency either. By mixing and scheduling every type of campaign together – from loops to programmatic and everything in between – you reduce your risk of unsold space and open your availability up to drive more revenue. How? Because you haven’t committed a set amount of space to a certain type of buyer, you can mix all booking types equally and say yes to every type of revenue without hesitation. In this way, the Optimization Engine can do even more for OOH than Waze can for navigation.
Imagine, working with multiple SSPs and seamlessly mixing loops or fixed-space and time bookings while also delivering a number of plays to specific audiences, then seamlessly scheduling Real-Time Bidding bookings just .003 seconds before the moment of play. Having each one mixed and placed automatically, even mixing packages of screens alongside individual freestyle campaigns, without ever needing to figure it out manually. Imagine knowing that through it all your commercial rules are being prioritized and not a scrap of opportunity is left on the table at the end of the day. That’s true Optimization.
Sounds exciting, right? We think so. While it might feel like the next frontier for OOH, we’re actually already there. The LDSK Optimization Engine has been tried and tested with some of the industry’s biggest media owners across multiple markets. BYO CMS and we can simply ‘plug Optimization in’ to your existing workflows or take advantage of our flexible content management options. Either way, it doesn’t take a complete business overhaul to reap the Optimization rewards.