Seeing double at Programmatic Pioneers


Lumen were talking and being talked about at the Programmatic Pioneers conference in London this week.
Mike (pictured here, seemingly asleep on his barstool, picture credit: Seun Odeneye) was on a panel organized by JCDecaux about the potential of programmatic out of home.
But this talk was immediately preceded by another panel, specifically on the topic of attention, which brought together a host of Lumen clients from Mail Metro Media, PHD, and Gumgum, all hosted by Craig Tuck of Ozone (another Lumen client). It produced one of those strange, out-of-body experiences, when you get to hear what people have to say about you when you are not in the room.
The two talks gave us two very different, if complementary, perspectives on attention.
The Ozone panel centred on what can be standardized about attention measurement: a consistent, cross-media currency that helps the buy side and the sell side assess the true value of advertising inventory. Rob Garber of Gumgum was very compelling about the need for the industry to move from paying for impressions (CPM) to paying to attention (aCPM) – a topic that he has been talking about a lot recently.
By contrast, the JCDecaux session addressed what could be tweaked and nuanced with attention data. Yes, OOH with become ‘just another screen’ for programmatic traders to include in their plans. But as Hannah Marshall of Matterkind was quick to point out, it’s a screen with unique characteristics. Buying ads based on location or daypart actually means something with OOH, with the same ads generating more attention because they are in the right place at the right time. Making sure you have the right creative can amplify things further – the topic of the recent Location Matters conference put on by the guys at JCDecaux.
What this binocular approach suggests is that the most sophisticated industry players can see the foreground and the far distance at the same time. In the foreground are the basic facts of the ‘attention economy’: that attention is valuable, but it is also finite and even rare. These facts have now been recognized, understood, and assimilated. Now is the time to look into the far distance:  searching for ways to take advantage of this insight, in both creative development and media planning.