04 August 2014

Blogpost: Real Time Online Bidding is the Future. Connectivity is Now

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As a stock trading firm you operate in a very volatile market. You have to immediately respond to what you see and make the right choice at the right time. You completely rely on accurate and real-time data. And then the network connectivity is lost...Bye bye profit.

OK, maybe this example is a bit dramatic, but it is almost the same thing real-time advertisement bidders have to cope with. Real-time advertising is an effective method that targets people whilst they are visiting a website. As soon as a user visits a website, a bid request is triggered that can include various pieces of data such as the user’s demographic information, browsing history, location, and the page being loaded. This request follows a journey from the publisher to an advertising exchange. This ad exchange submits the request and the accompanying data to multiple advertisers who automatically submit bids in real time to place their ads. This process repeats itself until every ad slot on the page is filled. Real time bidding transactions happen extremely fast: normally within 100 milliseconds from a user visiting a website.

So just like high frequency trading, digital advertising is a very exciting and fast activity. And also, just like on Wall Street, real time bidding involves computerized, algorithm-driven trading that allows for quick buying of ad impressions. In the background, connectivity also plays an immense role. Advertising opportunities are auctioned off in real time, so you better make sure connectivity is being prioritized.

When you are in the real time bidding market, like Brightroll, latency cannot be an issue. When connected to a public web, there is a realistic risk for latency challenges and network errors that can occur. BrightRoll is an advertising platform for reaching audiences across web, mobile and connected TV. The company powers digital video advertising for the world’s largest brands, including 85 of the top 100 US advertisers and 18 of the top 20 advertising technology companies. To ensure low latency, companies can use public peering via an Internet Exchange platform such as AMS-IX or through dedicated private peering links. For those assurances, Brightroll connected to AMS-IX.

However online advertising and real time online bidding exists for a while now, we see an extreme growth at the moment. With the increase of mobile advertising, real time (mobile) bidding also shows an explosive growth. On mobile platforms, real time bidding is extremely powerful, because customers take their mobile devices anywhere: shopping, at work, to school, to a restaurant, etc. By the time a customer opens a page on their device about the nearest coffee shop, you have already placed your bid. As long as your connection is all right, of course.


Mark Cooper
CCO at AMS-IX