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Advertisers, Here’s One Weird Trick From The ANA That Could Save You $20 Billion

By Allison Schiff, Monday, June 19th, 2023 – 6:00 am

To say the programmatic media supply chain is a transparency-free zone that increasingly serves as a vehicle to funnel money to websites whose sole purpose is to facilitate advertising arbitrage is to say nothing new. It’s a fact.

But the Association of National Advertisers (ANA) has the receipts.

On Monday, the ANA released the first part of its programmatic transparency report, which found that brands could save at least $20 billion a year by avoiding low-quality inventory, such as clickbait, filler content and slideshows jammed with more display and video ad slots than there are sometimes words on the page.

In the ANA’s estimation, advertisers unknowingly spend an astounding $13 billion annually on made-for-advertising (MFA) websites alone, which translates into 21% of all impressions and 15% of ad spend.

It’s a weird world in which advertisers will assiduously avoid running against news content because of brand safety concerns, but blithely spend billions on crapola that’s been specifically engineered to capture programmatic ad budgets.

The ANA conducted its study in partnership with TAG, PwC US and risk management services provider Kroll. It ran between September 2022 and January 2023, covering $123 million in ad spend tied to 35.5 billion impressions. Part two of the report will come out later this year.


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