Google has been touting automation in advertising for years. Marketers initially rejected the idea of less control over campaigns, leaving the processes up to technology. Somehow all that has changed.
Research released Wednesday from Theorem, conducted in partnership with global insights and strategy agency Hypothesis Group, analyzes the time savings that automation offers, and cites improvements and resolution with common pain points such as human errors and makegoods.
The research — Understanding Ad Automation — was conducted from March 23 through April 17, 2023, surveying 229 decision-makers for digital ad and media planning at publishers, retail media networks, streaming media and audio companies, among others that use digital ads as a revenue stream and are considering implementing automation.
Despite marketers not wanting to give up controls to decisions made on campaigns, human error is a factor, with 67% of ad operations professionals agreeing that automation can reduce human error, while another 59% say it centralizes information and establishes consistencies across processes that eliminate bottlenecks and minimizes makegoods.
The findings suggest that automation speeds up revenue cycles, allowing companies to realize income faster by processing higher volumes of work more efficiently.
Some 86% of professionals working in advertising operations believe that automation can modernize their businesses, while 87% believe automation can make their companies more profitable, and 83% think automation can make them more productive.
Time constraints were reported as presenting a major challenge to ad-operations professionals. Some 86% of respondents say complex, time consuming or inefficient processes slow their pace of working, and 75% believe that automation will address those challenges and help them save time.
Common uses for automation in the ad operations process include generating reports, 62%; completing repeatable tasks, 59%; and eliminating labor-intensive tasks, 56%.
Other benefits were cited as well, with 64% of organizations expecting to see better campaign performance; 63% of organizations want to see increased company revenue; and 48% of respondents state they plan to see improved client satisfaction.
The research also explored sentiment. Findings from the survey found that respondents felt positive about the introduction of automation. While a fear of job loss was not mentioned, 81% of respondents believe automation is a complement to human workers rather than a replacement.