Programmatic Guaranteed vs. Algorithmic Guaranteed

By Amihai Ulman A curious thing happened when the calendar changed from '12 to '13, the change brought with it a blizzard of articles and blog entries about Programmatic Guaranteed. Having seen well defined words like ‘transparency’, ‘price discovery’, and ‘exchange’ lose their true meaning in the morass of ad-tech marketing, this seemed to be the perfect opportunity for clarifying the difference between programmatic and algorithmic.

A number of players in the industry have begun to use the term Programmatic Guaranteed to describe their business, a term that today has a different meaning than programmatic in RTB. So what’s the difference? Programmatic is used for automation and algorithmic is used for computation. Most people understand that programmatic in RTB includes a great deal of computation determining value and price in and automated marketplace. For nearly all platforms in the nascent Guaranteed Programmatic space, there is no bidding, value, or price computations. It is simply an automation value proposition.


What the advertising industry needs is actually an Algorithmic Guaranteed Exchange. I wrote a little about this in Smart Auctions vs. Not-So-Smart Auctions. An Algorithmic Guaranteed Exchange enables buyers and sellers to leverage the strength of computational algorithms, to optimally price their asking prices and bids, using some of the most powerful mathematical tools used by financial professionals with a push of a button.

For both buyers and sellers, the ability to leverage algorithmic technologies enables critical new tools in answering the most important questions they face on a day-to-day basis. What should I buy or sell to achieve my goals? How much should I pay? When should I place my order? Media buyers and publishers sales teams need better more powerful tools. Programmatic Guaranteed technologies will not answer your questions they will simply do as they are told.

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