Programmatic Isn’t Mobile Led, Yet Everyone Is There, Says Pandora

Programmatic Isn’t Mobile Led, Yet Everyone Is There, Says Pandora
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Programmatic may be one of the biggest buzzwords of Adland and yet Jack Krawczyk, vice president of advertising product management at music streaming site Pandora, questions why those who do use programmatic in mobile are not doing it from a mobile mindset.

Brands have been lauding the mobile wave. ‘Everything is on mobile’, ‘everyone needs a mobile-first strategy’, ‘this is the year of mobile’, and all that jazz. So doesn’t it make sense mobile programmatic would be mobile led?

“The majority of mobile programmatic isn’t mobile led, but that’s by far the minority of where people spend their time, in mobile,” Krawczyk told B&T.

“It’s an interesting time for mobile programmatic because the data assets that a lot of customers have built up on web, they haven’t yet built up on mobile.”

From Pandora’s perspective, the company doesn’t think of programmatic as a specific product, “we just see it as a mechanism for facilitating a transaction”.

The mindset of programmatic in this way leads to the music streaming site being platform agnostic.

Marshall McLuhan famously stated, “the medium is the message”. And yet, is that really the case anymore? Krawczyk explained how advertising today is vastly different from advertising of yesteryear.

“When we think about advertising, we think about it not from the device level, but from the personalisation level,” he said.

“That’s a really big shift from the way advertising has worked in the past.

“Ultimately, advertising shouldn’t be about reaching somebody on a specific device, it should be about reaching your target audience, regardless of which device they’re on.”

Pandora was one of many brands to launch an app on Apple’s eagerly anticipated Apple Watch, and the introduction of smartwatches is an area Krawczyk sees as a branching out from the “unnatural” consolidation of technology.

“We used to have fifty different devices – we would have a CD player, then we would have a digital camera and all these sorts of things – and they all consolidated into one device which are our iPhones or our Android phones,” he said.

“And I don’t think that’s a natural use case for all those things to be centralised into one device. And so, we’re now proliferating out. We see smartwatches coming through, connected cars are the next phase.”

It shouldn’t matter where you are or what you’re doing, the experience should be the same, he suggested.

“We just want to make sure that persistent logged in user experience is the same no matter where you are,” he said. “And it certainly applies to music you listen to and we think about the advertising in the same capacity.

“Whether you’re listening on your desktop or you’re listening on your phone that’s connected to your Apple Watch, you should have the same experience. It shouldn’t be different just because the device is different.”

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