There are two giants in the online ad world—Google and Facebook—but not everyone likes it that way. Demand-side platform AppNexus credits its success partly on providing an alternative. Company president Michael Rubenstein explained it to Beet.tv in an interview:
“This whole field in so many ways has arisen because publishers haven’t had good options for monetizing their inventory,” Rubenstein explains. “For ten-plus years they’ve been stuck behind this Google monopoly, and publishers are voting with their feet right now. They’re looking for ways to increase monetization and to do so in ways where they’re taking more control and they have more transparency.”
Think of Google and Facebook as two tall trees taking up all the sunlight and leaving everyone else to grow in the shade. As online advertising gets larger, however, publishers are looking around to make sure they’re getting the best deal.
“One of the most pronounced trends in 2015-2016 was that two companies really—Google and Facebook—were taking more dollars out of the advertising ecosystem than anyone else. In fact, leaving very little growth for any other publishers or media companies,” Rubenstein says. “What we’re seeing in response to that is that publishers, media companies are seeking independent solutions that are going to let them capitalize on the growing online advertising pie and not creating wholesale dependencies on two companies. That creates a real need in the marketplace.”
There’s no denying that Google and Facebook have advantages over the competition, and that comes down to the vast consumer data they possess. But there’s one thing they can’t offer:
“Google and Facebook sit on a very valuable data set that they’ve made it very easy to activate inside the agency community, and that’s what’s responsible for their success. They don’t have an empowerment philosophy as it relates to brands and publishers.” Rubenstein cautions. “They’re not trying to help those companies build stronger, independent, self-sustaining businesses.”
For more from AppNexus, watch the full video below (used with permission).