Key challenges

Data analytics can be sophisticated, but they can also be embarrassingly crude occasionally.

It’s not as bad as when ecommerce first started, when there were cases of supermarkets offering people items they’d bought before even if these happened to be Christmas trees and it was February.

However, basing a pitch on someone’s decision to investigate an item online when for all you know they’ve bought it elsewhere is counterproductive.

Likewise, wouldn’t it be useful to know whether a particular user or class of user habitually looks at, say, new phones – but never buys?

When did you first start using a DMP?

Personalisation is also a frequently-used means of targeting according to the report, but people’s use of devices is changing. In the presence of multiple users per device you can’t be sure an advertisement is going to the right one.

This is before you get as far as ad fraud, which is a sophisticated crime.

Analysts quoted in the Oracle paper suggest that some of the ways of making this work will involve overhauling business processes.

“I would hope this brings the CRM and audience teams together,” says Ben Salmon of Attributely. “Merge CRM and audience to build the ultimate profile.”

Chris Humphrey of Lloyds Banking Group sees a great opportunity.

We’re very fortunate in that the very nature of what we do can garner a lot of insight on customers and so we can provide a much better customer experience.

That will drive new product and engender loyalty. The challenge to us is the pace of change but also the end-to-end journey. It’s not a small task.

And then there’s the mobile problem.

No calories in these cookies 

Mobile behaves differently than other technologies in many ways. For the marketer, however, there is one major manner in which it is completely distinct from other media.

There are no cookies on one in six mobile devices. In other words the passive means of picking up data almost by default won’t work on a sixth of the fastest growing platforms in the world.

“As a result, to be truly effective, DMPs have to function beyond the cookie,” says the report.

It’s possible to do now, and 60% of people use their DMP for more than their display advertising.  

According to Andrew Hood of Lynchpin, “If companies have got together the data they need for segmentation and targeting then DMPs do let them push data between platforms.”

So it’s started to go beyond cookies, and it’s going to catch up with the obstacles discussed in the first half of this article.

This is a good time to start using a DMP: we’re past the early-adopter stage and onto the serious business benefits. Just don’t think the technology is ever going to stand still.


  • The role of DMPs is moving beyond display advertising.
  • The information available through DMPs is leading to an overhaul of the business processes.
  • The role of DMPs will continue to evolve and the business evolve with in.