- IBM and Salon Media are piloting a blockchain proof-of-concept product developed by AdLedger, a nonprofit consortium focused on developing blockchain standards for digital advertising, per news made available in an email to Marketing Dive. AdLedger members include GroupM, the IAB, IBM, IPG Mediabrands, iSpot.tv, MAD Network, Publicis Media and TEGNA.
- The Campaign Reconciliation project lays the foundation for AdLedger's mission to establish rules and standards for blockchain in advertising. It leverages a shared ledger to improve ad transparency by acting as a trailing audit that looks to ensure yield management and ROI for publishers and advertisers while still protecting consumer data.
- Salon Media is participating to wrangle better control over its publisher inventory, as well as identify inefficiencies in the supply chain. IBM wants to learn more about balancing the role of advertiser and technology provider. "We believe that blockchain can help our advertising dollars go further by eliminating unnecessary intermediaries, and combining disparate sources of data and reconcile immediate metrics based on measurement KPIs tied to campaign delivery," Chad Andrews, global solutions leader of advertising at IBM, said in a statement.
As marketers continue to demand that digital ad transparency be improved, more brands are backing blockchain initiatives as potential solutions to clearing out murk from the space. IBM and Salon both piloting AdLedger's new product signals confidence in the ability for the ledger-based technology to create more transparency and also better measure campaign success. The Campaign Reconciliation project intends to reveal problems with under-delivery, reduce time spent reconciling campaign data and offer a near-real-time glimpse into campaign spending, per the release.
IBM, which helped drum up marketers' interest in artificial intelligence and cognitive technology through solutions like Watson, is clearly looking to be an early leader in blockchain as well. The consumer packaged goods giant Unilever has reported success from a fledgling partnership with IBM on blockchain technology that improves campaign efficiency, and the AdLedger news continues the firm's early streak in the space.
AdLedger's project is also backed by trade groups like the IAB. To research different uses of blockchain and to establish a set of standards and best practices for the digital ad industry, the IAB Tech Lab recently created a Blockchain Working Group that collects feedback from industry leaders and investigates areas including ad fraud, measurement, discrepancy reconciliation for billing, financial transactions and validation of ad resources and assets.
WinterGreen Research has previously forecast that the market for blockchain-based products and services will grow from $706 million last year to $60 billion by 2024.