Cleaning up programmatic might free up budget for affiliate marketing.
Written by Brook Schaaf
Not by dollar total but by publisher count…
Earlier this month, the Association of National Advertisers published a study on programmatic media and supply chain transparency. Their conclusion: “If marketers take their eye off the ball, suspect inventory can find a way into media plans.”
This means that advertising dollars bleed over to spam websites with low quality, often AI-generated clickbait and content. These are called Made for Advertising, or MFA, websites.
ANA estimates that elimination of these sites from the buying mix would save a minimum of $13 billion per year, based on the open web programmatic global market size of $88 billion, which they project would turn out to be “at least $20 billion in efficiency gains for open web programmatic advertising.”
The average campaign runs on a staggering 44,000 websites, with MFA sites capturing a fifth of impressions. According to the ANA, this is unnecessary: “Advertisers can reach a high percentage of target audiences using a few hundred websites.”
Hmm. Reaching a significant customer base through a few hundred websites? That sounds about in the ballpark of a typical healthy affiliate program.
While tempered by the explosion of commerce content affiliates in recent years, it seems to me that affiliate still suffers somewhat under the impression — or misimpression — that there are only a handful of good affiliates out there and it’s not worth investing resources in. It’s hard to gauge how pervasive this attitude still is, but my sense is that it lingers, while a healthier approach would be to look at total revenue potential and backing out reasonable resource investments.
It may be that the average advertiser finds it has a handsome new budget ready to be spent in the value-based affiliate channel, where there might even be thousands of worthwhile partners to be found.