Guaranteed Media Needs Order Management Systems

Recently, a number of realizations have led to a significant amount of thought concerning how orders are handled in media transactions. Careful consideration has led  to the conclusion that something very fundamental is missing - guaranteed/reserved order management tools for buyers and sellers don't exist. It is as if the technology stack is missing an entire function. And no, programmatic direct is not order management. Yes, there are already a lot of different technologies needed to make things work. So what!? What some in our industry are saying when complaining about the additional technology is effectively "the operating system i use to power my media already has too much functionality..." huh? seriously? That logic reminds me of this ad.

As desktop computers developed, companies created more and more software to solve a huge number of problems for every single business in our economy. People regularly complain about how complicated their computer is and technologists continuously work to solved for that. So why not media? Media is not just some backwater-back-office business function anymore. The media industry is transforming itself from one of the most technologically backwards to one of the fastest evolving. What is missing is the ability to look at everything you need to buy or sell through a single platform. Not ad serving, not data management, not inventory or bid management, not billing, not workflow, not a billing system, not an advertising management system, an order management system. Something different.

All the systems that currently exist are designed to answer three simple questions what do I transact? when do I transact? and for how much? Media professionals have plenty of tools to help with that. When it comes to actually placing an order for some media, "how do I transact?" there is nothing to manage those orders. Managing insertion orders and RFPs is not the same thing as order management.

An order management system provides a common language for transacting, that works no matter what technology you use.