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With Scaled Inventory, P&G Bets on ‘Irresistible Superiority’

May 25th, 2017   ||    by Callie Wheeler   ||    No Comments

Procter & Gamble (P&G) recently announced a new strategy touching on everything from scaled inventory to product packaging. Called “Irresistibly Superior,” the move is designed to set the brand up for future success in spite of current market challenges.

The shift in strategy may have sounded odd to shareholders, according to The Drum, but P&G is likely the first of many big brands to make intentional changes to the way it scales advertising and approaches creative—cutting costs by shortening its media supply chain.

Not Just Any Media Will Do

Big brands spend big money on advertising, and new ad formats have introduced new challenges to the mix. Issues with ad viewability, transparency, and unfavorable ad placement haven’t gone away in recent years—if anything, they’ve only become more obvious.

According to Business Insider, more than 250 brands suspended their ads from Google and YouTube earlier this year after an investigation from The New York Times revealed ads could be showing up next to extremist content.

While P&G emphasized the pursuit of excellence across the board, including the quality of ad inventory and creative, the company is not the only one to take its advertising back. Last year, AdAge highlighted L’Oreal’s desire to have more control over its programmatic experience, pointing out the addition of a high-level ad-tech position to the company’s list of available in-house jobs.

Why Cutting Costs Is a Good Thing

Part of P&G’s strategy for scaled inventory involves purchasing inventory from media providers that meet their standards. Ultimately, the company has lowered its marketing budget by about $2 billion, but believes it will make up for the decreased spending with lower advertising costs, fewer agency fees, and reduced waste.

The idea that control over media spend produces cost savings and better return on investment isn’t unique to P&G. Automated TV buying brings many of these same concepts—including control over ad placement, relevance to differing audience segments, and data transparency—under the same umbrella.

Reaching relevant audiences through local and cable TV emphasizes message fit over mass buys, saving brands money and providing insight into the effectiveness of ads and campaigns. Brands can use these savings to tweak their ad strategies, test out new lines of creative messaging, or improve their products.

The Future of Big Brands

P&G, L’Oreal, and other companies are among the early adopters of such strategies, but they’re paving the way for more brands. After all, transparency, scalability, audience targeting, and cost are major issues facing every big brand.

As some of these brands experiment with shifting ad dollars to more transparent media companies, others are adopting new technologies like automated TV buying, and still others are trying their hands at bringing the process in-house. But regardless of the route they take, the overall trend toward automated ad tech is a positive indication of what’s to come.

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