Publisher Mind Map: ‘We can’t solve latency on our own’

By Digiday Editors

More than 200 executives from top publishing companies gathered this week at the Digiday Publishing Summit in Vail, Colorado, where they addressed the biggest challenges facing digital media. During town hall-style meetings and working groups, attendees focused on platform publishing, scaling video, new revenue streams and more.

We asked them to identify their biggest issues on their minds, and used the results to come up with an overall mind map of the summit. With publishers seeking revenue streams outside of advertising, getting audience members to pay up occupies most of their collective minds (30 percent). The next-biggest issues cited were latency and talent (20 percent each), followed by user experience and vendors (15 percent).

Here are the candid thoughts they shared on those and other topics during the three-day summit. (These discussions were on the record, only without attribution of names and companies.)

Verification and viewability issues
“Agencies are demanding that we pick up the fees for [third-party] verification services. They used to be part of the agency’s fees. Now we’re responsible for paying for DoubleVerify, Nielsen, Moat and other fees that are tied into it.”

“At our company, we have three different [third-party verification] companies that we use, and rarely do they match. And all of our advertising partners are going to use another set of companies. The biggest issue that comes out of that is you end up paying double and ultimately it’s going to reflect on our CPMs.”

“My favorite thing is when you have creative wrapped in a verification vendor and it doesn’t serve at all, and then when you unwrap it, it serves just fine. When you go to agencies or vendors, they’ll say, ‘Oh, no, it served just fine,’ or there’s a bunch of finger pointing.”

“Organizations meant to reduce taxes have put another roadblock in the lane. It’s just another middle man. Why do I have to say I’m verified? Shouldn’t I just be verified? And why do I have to pay for it on an annual basis?”

“Viewability is seen as a publisher problem. Publishers have done a lot to optimize for viewability. The groups who complain are ad tech vendors and agency creatives. Unfortunately, there is no push or anything like that to get agencies and creative companies to fix viewability. Agency creatives will say, ‘I’ll never win an award for a static image.’ So the incentives are misaligned.”

Latency issues
“Latency is a huge problem because it’s stuff we’re not able to monetize. People have scrolled by at that point and we don’t get paid.”

“We’re looking at tech to tell us who the big offenders are. Latency is absolutely a problem but it’s not one that one publisher can solve on their own. There are so many areas of the business that create the problem.”

“It’s a threat to the editorial side of the business. Whether you’re talking long-form, short-form or any other form of video, and people are watching in the app and it takes forever for the ad to load, we hear about it. People who spend millions of …read more

Read more here:: digiday

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