April 26, 2022

Publica Introduces CTV Contextual Segment Manager

For brands, audiences based on demographics have provided a great way for advertisers to spend their advertising budgets on desired user segments; an audience segment could be something like males 18-35 in the market for a new car, females 20-39 making over $100k per year, or any other demographic that advertisers are trying to reach.

Now that new privacy regulations are being rolled out on a regular basis and users are gaining more tools to limit the sharing of their device IDs and cookies, it’s a great time to take all of the learnings that we’ve made in audience segments and apply them to a method that had been proven well before the advent of the internet: contextual advertising.

At Publica, we’re making a commitment to bring linear-TV-level insights to CTV and our Contextual Segment Manager is a big first step on that journey. 

Print, product placement, and outdoor advertising have been taking advantage of contextualization for well over a century. It differs from audiences in that we don’t know exactly who the user is when they’re viewing the advertisement, but we know a lot about the content the user is seeing (or in the case of outdoor advertising, the environment in which they’re seeing it). A simple example here is that a user watching a children’s cartoon TV show may be shown advertisements for children’s toys, or a user watching a sports channel being shown an ad for energy drinks.

Contextualization has always been something that brands depended on for advertisements, but it has been glaringly missing from ad tech for too long. With Publica’s Contextual Segment Manager, we have tackled this by enabling CTV publishers to package all of the relevant contextual information about their content into a deal ID.

Publishers will be able to create a programmatic guaranteed deal for PG-13 Action content while blocking an IAS segment for GARM Arms and Ammunition. We’ve also partnered with IRIS.TV to enable all of their contextual segment partners within the Publica platform so that publishers will be able to pair 1st party contextual data with segments from data partners such as GumGum and KERV.

Within conventional linear television, advertisers get full insights about the content that they’re serving next to. Not just the channel that it’s running on, or the cable provider that the show is being shown through, but also the show’s title, genre, rating, subrating, and guarantees about what themes and references will be shown next to their brand. This full disclosure of content is the direction that we need to head within connected television in order to continue gaining ground in a space that has historically been dominated by linear TV.

At Publica, we’re making a commitment to bring linear-TV-level insights to CTV and our Contextual Segment Manager is a big first step on that journey. 

For publishers who are unable to share standard oRTB content values in the bidstream, we are working with them to ensure that data can make their way into Publica's platform. We'll then package contextual data within a deal so that buyers can be confident in their brand placement. For peace of mind, we’re also making a post-bid report available to buyers so that they can validate that their deal activations are serving next to the content that they intend it to.

As the ad tech industry pivots towards contextualization, we hope that this product innovation will help open doors to more publishers sharing contextual data, and more buyers transacting on it. This is the future of connected television, and it’s brought to you by Publica.

by James Wilhite, VP of Product @Publica

👉 If you'd like to preview how the Contextual Segment Manager works behind the scenes in our platform, here is a quick overview of the feature.

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James Wilhite