A Slight Problem With Ad Exchanges… (warning NSFW)

The idea of Ad Exchanges (Right Media, DoubleClick Exchange, etc.) makes a lot of sense – especially for smaller players who manage display media in-house or independently from an agency. Lately, it seems that several agencies (and Yahoo) have been experimenting with Right Media to get ahead in the CPA view-through game. For example, if client “A” is judging the success of a campaign on conversions, low-cost, remnant inventory on Right Media will give the program significant reach. With a view-through window of 30 days, latency conversions become a numbers game and the cheaper the inventory, the better (note: this is much more likely when the pricing model is CPA based).

Most legitimate online ad networks offer marketers a quality guarantee when it comes to publisher content and ad placement. However, one apparent problem with Ad Exchanges is that there aren’t as many checks in place to ensure brand-safe venues. In an open market, anything is game and with thousands of options, most agencies and marketers do not have the time to sift through all of the options. Similarly, Marketing.fm raised this question last year when we discovered embarassing brand placements within various User Generated Content publishers. Below is a perfect example of how a blind buy across Yahoo’s Right Media can lead to highly controversial ad placement on