PubMatic (Nasdaq: PUBM), an independent technology company providing the digital advertising supply chain of the future, has announced the findings of a new report on Europe’s thriving commercial media landscape. The study “The Evolution of Commerce Media in Europe”, commissioned in partnership with ExchangeWire, revealed that 67% of commercial media companies and retailers plan to increase their investments in this area, and 24% plan to maintain a level already sound investment.

The original quantitative findings in this report come from a survey of 112 professionals from commercial media companies in France, Germany, Spain and the UK. Findings cover how sellers of goods and services in Europe are interacting with commercial media, key drivers and barriers to increasing investment in commercial media, and how retailers are working with technology partners to leverage take advantage of the opportunities in the sector.

Main conclusions

  • Direct media selling is expected to be used by all European retailers surveyed for their trade media efforts, while programmatic direct and real-time (RTB) bidding is being adopted by retailers in the region.
  • Retailers see trade media as a way to enhance their own media properties, with the expansion of owned advertising channels, the provision of better targeting and personalization of advertisements, and the strengthening of brand safety in commercial media channels, the engines most cited by European retailers.
  • Unsurprisingly in the current economic climate, concerns about the cost of technology to implement and hiring people with the right skills have been identified as the main obstacles to investing in commercial media in Europe.
  • The overwhelming majority (80%) of European retailers are willing to work with third-party providers for their trade media efforts, with 20% of respondents saying they already work with partners.
  • The majority are also willing to work with third-party technology providers to help achieve these ambitions, with cost savings and improvements in data activation cited as key factors in partner selection.

“This study demonstrates that there are significant growth opportunities in the European commercial media market. The results will enable advertisers, publishers and the entire digital advertising industry to plan ahead and create optimal advertising experiences for consumers,” said Babs Kehinde, Senior Director, Commerce Media at PubMatic.

“It is clear that regardless of business size, commercial media is a priority for buyers and sellers alike and adapting to the demands of the next generation of media buyers will be key to success for publishers and technology companies. Agencies that have invested in “programmatic first” talent are poised to lead a rapid acceleration in automated and data-driven trading in the years to come.

“Commercial media will be a key revenue driver for European retailers in 2023 and the results of this study show that 2023 will be an important time to partner with third-party vendors. The acceleration of data-driven RTB strategies will be fueled through technology and expertise and this is an area that requires thoughtful investment.” said Mat Broughton, editor of Exchange Wire.

Download the study here

Research Methodology

The original quantitative results for this Insights & Attitudes report are based on a survey of 112 professionals from commercial media companies in Europe. The markets studied were France (FR); Germany (DE); Spain (ES); and the United Kingdom (UK). Responses were collected from November 4, 2022 to November 10, 2022.

Commercial media: Commercial media is defined as advertising sold in digital properties in which products or services are also sold. This typically includes retailer websites and apps, or online marketplaces, but it can also include on-site digital displays such as store entrance screens and in-store signage. Commercial media also includes off-site campaigns by retailers using their shopping data on behalf of third-party brands whose products are listed on the retailer’s page or app.

Commercial media company: A commercial media company is any business that sells goods or services to customers, views transaction data, and makes those users available for targeting by onsite and/or offsite advertisers.

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