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3 Advantages of Site Direct Media Buys

By Jenna Bruce on Tue, Oct 18, 2016 @ 01:15 PM |


There’s been a lot of hype over the last few years about programmatic ad buying. While it has the potential to allow advertisers to reach their audience at scale and at a low cost, and though it makes real-time optimization possible – the technology is still in its infancy and there are definite issues that need to be resolved.

For instance, the inventory differs between publishers, and this can cause major problems for companies. While some publishers open all of their inventory to programmatic, others only offer up their below-the-fold “remnant” inventory.

Also, because site direct ads happen across multiple publishers, buyers must use polite loads for their creative. This doesn’t mean they can’t use rich media, but it means they’ll be limited in the scope of use.

While the industry busies itself working out these programmatic kinks, some media buyers are helping their clients by going right to the source. Site direct buys are what they sound like – you contact the website publisher directly and work out the placement directly with their ad team. When it comes to reaching an audience in a premium and highly creative way, we’ve found that site direct buys work best for our clients.

Here are 3 advantages of site direct buys:

Work with a Real PersonWork with a Real Person 

Programmatic marketing exchanges are impersonal; you make a buy using an algorithm and hope for the best. But site direct buys mean you can work with an actual person that can help you maximize your strategy. The website publishing team is able to provide expert advice and data about placements, which will ultimately help you reach your target audience. Plus, the website’s publishing team can help you craft digital media strategies that will help you reach your campaign’s goals.

Ideal Placement 

As I mentioned earlier, with programmatic ad buys, you’re never really sure if a publisher has opened all of their premium inventory or just their remnant spots. But working directly with a website publisher means you can place your ads exactly where you want them to be.

For instance, you could request:

  • That your ad be placed around specific content. If you know your audience like reading about celebrity gossip, you can place your ad directly on the entertainment page. If they like sports, your ad can be placed on the sports page.
  • A premium placement such as the first content block on the page, a takeover, transitional, etc. Premium spots are effective because they interrupt the reader’s path and force them to see your ad. These premium ads are typically not available through programmatic buys, only site direct.
  • To have an ad size that is not standard to help your message stand out.
  • A larger ad load size that’s not offered through programmatic. This means your ad can be thoroughly creative and engaging to your audience by using video, maps, and animations.

Better Ad Quality

It’s true that direct site buys typically cost more than programmatic, but this is because they never force you to compromise on the quality of your ads. As I mentioned, site direct buys allow you to get premium ad placement and offer flexibility of media and file sizes. Plus, direct ads can be placed on home pages and can even be full-screen, ensuring your content gets seen by your audience. That’s priceless in today’s crowded marketplace.


Are you interested in adding site direct buys to your media mix? We’ve formed relationships with website publishers across numerous and varying digital properties. If you need some assistance with your digital marketing campaigns, get in touch with us today.

Download the CMO's Guide to Integrating Print and Digital Media

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Site Direct Media Buying