Will February 2017 be the Month That Destroys AdTech?

February 2017 has been a bad month for adtech. This month’s news should shake the industry down to its very core — and rightfully so.

February began with the fallout from Procter & Gamble’s chief brand officer Marc Pritchard’s atomic bomb of a marketing address to the annual leadership meeting of the Internet Advertising Bureau (IAB) in Florida. His opening remarks set the stage for the news to come:

“Before digital technology, we were constrained. Limited formats, change at a snail’s pace. Now, we have freedom to spread our wings, to venture where no creative has been before, at lightning speed. And the result can be magnificent works of craft. But, there’s a dark side. At the same time, we’ve seen an exponential increase in, well, crap.

“Craft or crap? That’s really the big question. And technology enables both. And all too often, the outcome has been crappy advertising accompanied by even crappier viewing experiences.”

Pritchard, the top marketer at the world’s largest advertiser, then advocated for one viewability standard, accredited third-party measurement verification, transparent agency contracts, and the prevention of online advertising fraud. Most significantly, Pritchard announced that P&G will be reviewing all agency contracts and will not use advertising networks and platforms that do not comply.

[Read the rest of my latest “The Promotion Fix” column at The Drum!]


A former journalist and newspaper editor turned marketing and communications executive, Samuel Scott is Marcom Director at AI-powered log analytics software platform Logz.io, a global marketing speaker, and writer of the regular “The Promotion Fix” column in The Drum. Scott has been quoted or cited by publications including AdWeek, CIO, and Fortune. Follow him on Facebook and Twitter.