When we decided to start Safe-Reach.com it was mainly for a few reasons. Primarily, it was to create a solution that seemingly didn’t exist for many of the local agencies and media companies I worked with as a data partner. These ad groups frequently were turning away dollars from cannabis related businesses because most (all) programmatic solutions in the market along with all of the major social platforms don’t support paid media for the Cannabis Industry.

Once the team here started connecting the dots on how exactly we could create a scalable programmatic network and how we would mitigate compliance through verified audience data we realized we needed to learn more about the ins and outs of publisher yield management. I had some experience in the mobile world managing SDK’s and their various functions for mobile pubs but the desktop publisher was something new for our group. As we dove deeper in understanding the economics and workflow we eventually integrated into, it became apparent that header bidding became a key utility we needed to master for our pubs.

I work to understand things by making them as simple as possible. In the world of AdTech nothing is ever really “simple.” But, having a sales background and great mentors as a sales person I understand the value of breaking things down to an elementary level for my understanding and to reiterate that value to my partners. Now that the preamble is complete I proudly present to you my simple explanation of header bidding.

Scenario – You manage a website that gets traffic, you monetize your site with ads. Historically you would determine which SSPs you want to prioritize and put them in a vertical funnel called a waterfall. This would grant priority to whoever is your waterfall and allow them to bid on your inventory first. If no action was had the call would go to the next in line, at a cheaper price and continue until the impression was filled. Pricing isn’t set by real time demand, just historical averages and expectations – inefficient and costly for pubs.

Question – how do we make all of our supply sources bid for my traffic on an even playing field so that the highest bid wins every time, even if it’s not the supply source I believe will generally yield me the highest eCPM?

Solution – Find a way so that the waterfall becomes flat and the impressions are allocated only by financial rules and not priority in the waterfall. This is done through pre bid or header bidding. Publishers can use open source software to install a “container” on their site. Within the container you can install multiple bidders that all have the ability to purchase your inventory equally. Your container will determine who is bidding the highest and award that supplier the inventory. End game being more demand competing equally for your traffic driving up price, increase eCPM and yield for publisher.

Imaged Sourced From Snack Media

In Summation – Header bidding allows for equal economic competition for your inventory. A few years ago Safe-Reach would most likely be installed at the bottom of a publishers waterfall and even if we offer a 50% premium on eCPMs we would not be awarded most of the impressions as they would be filled by lesser bids from other supply networks. Nowadays Safe-Reach.com’s bidder competes equally with all other supply providers – allowing for greater competition with supply networks and generating increased eCPMs for pubs.