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When traffic spikes, what's your programmatic plan?

COVID-19 spurs pageview surge for local news organizations.

  • 1 min to read
Data analysis

With a populace anxious for trustworthy, up-to-the-minute coronavirus coverage, local media organizations are stepping up. In the week or so since the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic really started to impact the U.S., unique pageviews across the TownNews network are up 42.6%, week over week. Sunday and Monday were even bigger, with pageview increases of 70% and 51% over the prior week.

More pageviews equal more ad impressions, but with local sales bound to be stressed over the coming days and weeks, it is more important than ever to have the backing of a strong programmatic ad partner like TownNews iQ Ad Ops.

Yesterday, I spoke with Ryan Tornquist, a programmatic manager on our iQ Ad Ops team. They're working hard behind the scenes to monitor programmatic rates, and make adjustments to deliver the best possible performance for our clients. Here's what Ryan and team are seeing so far:

  • Daily global programmatic revenue has increased sharply compared to prior week, due to traffic increases across the network.
  • Programmatic ad requests have increased 42%.
  • Programmatic rates are holding so far. There has been a slight decline due to a rise in mobile traffic, which is up 7% since the start of the month.
  • If these trends continue, we are projecting a programmatic revenue increase for most iQ Ad Ops clients.

The takeaway? Programmatic performance at the outset of the coronavirus pandemic has been strong due to increased traffic and ad volume . . . but there are still risks as large advertisers scale back spending or pause entirely.

Programmatic advertising can help you take advantage of traffic spikes when they hit, but it's not "set it and forget it," and it's hard to do on your own. A dedicated programmatic partner—like TownNews iQ Ad Ops—that's continually tracking, testing, and tweaking to meet your strategic goals is critical to ensure that you aren’t leaving impressions unfilled . . . and money on the table.

The team at TownNews wants our 2,000+ local media partners to know that we will continue to work diligently on their behalf to maximize audience and advertising revenue during these unprecedented times, and will continue to investigate new revenue opportunities and tools that they can take to market in the near future.

Rick Rogers is Chief Revenue Officer for TownNews.

More in COVID-19:

Reopening '21 is coming, and local businesses need your help to bounce back. TownNews makes it easy to launch marketplaces that advertisers will flock to. Order before 3/31/2021 to get BLOX Business Directory for only $95 per month and save $100 on setup. Read more

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