Ad Verification is a real-time technical process which verifies the inventory quality and visibility of advertising impressions. In the fight against fraud and the lack of transparency and viewability, advertisers and agencies can use Ad Verification to protect their brand image, besides boosting their campaign performance by streamlining media investment.
The enormous growth of the digital advertising market, however, certainly got the attention of fraudsters as well, who quickly realized that the field of online marketing is a great chance for them to interfere and make money. Today’s hackers are constantly finding many new ways to defraud advertisers by faking ad traffic – e.g. by creating fake websites and using malware to simulate large human traffic and attract ads to their servers – making the set-up of Ad Verification necessary. The method ensures that ads appear on the right webpages at the right time, reaching the right audience, etc., always considering the content environment to be "brandsafe”.
The fact of the matter is that on one hand more and more brands are spending more money on online campaigns and are not feeling well with the performance values (order, cost per order) that have been tested for eCommerce budgets. On the other hand, the increase of automated trading processes via RTB platforms or ad-exchanges calls for control mechanisms.
But unfortunately - as always - there can be rotten apples not to trust to be neutral regarding the control and verification of advertising services. For this reason, we now understand "ad verification" as more of a review of the editorial advertising environment, although we must consider a whole bundle of more measures, like:
- Delivery: Is the campaign actually delivered - within the right time?
- Visibility: Is the banner delivered to the screen with the expected or booked visibility?
- Page context: Is the environment brandsafe? Does the content environment match the booking?
- Competitive exclusion: Is the booked exclusion for competing brands respected?
- Geo-targeting: Does the campaign run in the booked regions?
- Targeting: Is the booked targeting applying to the campaign?
- Frequency cap: Is the booked contact dose accordingly?
Of course, no single service provider or miracle software alone can completely map this complex sphere of action. It is also unrealistic that any of the above parameters could be completely re-measured in each campaign. The point is, rather, that the agency helps the customer to put together the optimal framework of planning and booking quality, ad server, tracking software, external data and possibly other services.
Ad verification is integrated with all aspects associated with digital marketing, such as ad networks, exchanges, SSPs, etc. Thus, when you are hiring a high-end Ad Verification company, you will get an all-around service which will ensure that your ads are running smoothly and successfully.
According to Geosurf, a high-quality Ad Verification service should cover the following aspects:
- Malware protection: There are numerous malicious activities that can compromise your ads. Some of them are auto-redirects, phishing, drive-by downloads and of course, malware integrated into the pre-click or post-click. Detecting and, more importantly, preventing malicious activities can be successfully accomplished by scanning your rotating ad tags.
- Ad quality monitoring: Lack of ad quality can wear many faces. Data leakage, inadequate privacy protection, problems with creative and advertiser quality, as well as operational issues are only some of them. Ad quality monitoring and management will make sure that your ad viewers have an engaging, pleasant and most importantly, safe user experience.
- Mobile ad management: Even though the web is one, mobile ads are a world on their own. Because of their apps, interface, software and many more aspects, mobile devices are particularly vulnerable to many issues, such as MRAID malware, VPAID errors, mobile auto-redirects, auto-downloads, phishing, pop-ups, and so on. A quality ad verification service will prevent all these from damaging your ads and your potential customers’ experience.
If you want to make sure that your online marketing campaign runs smoothly and successfully, then by all means consider getting a professional ad verification service.
Finally, Geosurf points out that the creation of whitelists and blacklists is a prerequisite to be effective against ad fraud and that in terms of brand safety ‘’blocking keyword clusters” should be created.