Have you heard about programmatic advertising? If so, you might have wondered what it's all about.

Even though you're a professional digital marketer who isn't currently using programmatic advertising, it's likely that you soon will be. That's because it's a trend that's definitely catching on.

According to a recent estimate by eMarketer, programmatic ad spend will hit close to $33 billion this year.

And it's growing.

What Is Programmatic Advertising?

In a nutshell: programmatic advertising is an example of marketing automation. It automates ad spending.

The programmatic system is designed to determine what kinds of ads will run and where they'll be placed. It does that with artificial intelligence (AI).

Programmatic advertising can even be used with TV ads.

A Financial Benefit

When you hear about marketing automation, you probably think of an automated process that's designed to save marketers time so they don't have to manually handle routine, tedious tasks.

With programmatic advertising, though, the automation also saves them money.

It does that by using its AI component to optimize ad runs. The system actually "learns" what type of campaigns will offer the best return.

And it works.

There have been reports of accounts gaining increased in conversions of over 500% after moving to programmatic advertising.

A New System for a New Age

Programmatic advertising is designed to do away with old-fashioned, hit-or-miss campaign design. That system was notorious for costing marketers way too much money.

Now, you can rely on an algorithm that will determine where your ad money is best spent. All you have to do is feed your programmatic solution some info about your campaign as well as key performance indicators and you're all set.

The system will not only launch your campaign, but it will also monitor your ad spend to look for areas of improvement.

Fighting Ad Fraud

You might have heard some horror stories about how programmatic advertising is a magnet for ad fraud. That's really a bad way to look at it.

Keep in mind that ad fraud existed well before programmatic advertising appeared on the scene. It's hard to make the case that automated ad solutions lead to ad fraud when ad fraud already existed.

Also, artificial intelligence can detect ad fraud and avoid it.

In other words, you might experience less fraud when you move to an automated solution. That's a great reason to automate.

Don't kid yourself, though. There are all sorts of bad characters in the world who are looking for ways to get around programmatic algorithms that detect ad fraud. You'll still have to exercise some level of diligence.

Time to Cut Loose

If you're a marketer who absolutely loves to optimize your own digital ad campaigns, then be prepared for a shock. When you adopt programmatic advertising, the system will handle that for you.

You might experience symptoms of withdrawal as you go through a change in your day-to-day responsibilities. You might even have some free time on your hands!

Don't worry, though. Once you see that programmatic ad spend not only brings people flocking to your website but also improves your ROI, you'll be quite content with the new system.

Don't get me wrong, you will still need to monitor it and humans will be necessary. You just might have more time to monitor, launch new campaigns and expand.

Working With Big Data

Another reason that programmatic advertising exists is because it can crunch info provided by Big Data solutions. That's especially important in this day and age of microtargeting uber-segmentation.

For practical purposes, there's really no way a human being (or even a small team of human beings) can crunch through the millions of rows and columns of countless data points that are stored in a Big Data repository. It's best to leave that kind of analysis to a computer that can handle high-level processing.

The good news is that programmatic solutions can work with Big Data to optimize ad spend. That means if you want to run an aggressive campaign target to a small, well-defined subset of your market, an automated system can handle that for you.

Also: programmatic advertising will find trends that can uncover hidden markets.

Get Started With Programmatic Advertising Now

There's no escaping the future of programmatic advertising. If you haven't already considered it a viable solution for your marketing campaigns, why not take a look at it today?