European Programmatic In-Housing: Adoption Rate, Benefits, Depth, and Types of In-House Buying Functions

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France  (in French) |  Germany  (in German) |  Italy (in Italian)  |  Spain  (in Spanish) |  UK

Programmatic In-Housing Report Overview – This report provides survey results on 950 brands’ adoption rate of programmatic in-housing, in-housing drivers, type and depth of in-house buying functions, and General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) impact within five European markets: France, Germany, Italy, Spain and the UK. Also included are insights into the drivers and challenges of in-housing, based on one-on-one interviews conducted among European-based brand advertisers actively involved in programmatic buying.

European Brand Discussion Insights – These key directional drivers emerged during brand interviews:

  • Brand Destiny – Brands emphasized the merits of in-housing as a way to control their own strategic destinies that lead to growth acceleration
  • Globalization – Brands with worldwide footprints are beginning to coordinate in-house efforts across markets as part of multi-year plans
  • GDPR Impact – All brands have experienced nominal GDPR impact on their businesses; according to one brand, the regulations helped to improve data quality

European Brand Survey Highlights – Following are the main findings from brand surveys:

  • 65 Percent of European Brands are Programmatically Active – UK and Italian brands led Europe with programmatic activity at or above 70% in both markets. Meanwhile, German (48 percent) and French brands (63 percent) registered the lowest programmatic buying engagement, reflecting the heavy focus on consumer privacy in those two countries.
  • 86 Percent of Programmatic-Active Brands Have In-House Capability – In-house setups are divided by brands having fully moved buying functions in-house (39 percent) versus those with partial capabilities (47 percent) involving media agency partners.
  • GDPR Nominally Affected Programmatic Ad Spending – Two-thirds of European brands indicated that programmatic ad spending actually increased during the eight months following GDPR inception, suggesting that marketplace demand softened GDPR impact.
  • Drivers of Programmatic In-Housing – Across Europe, primary motivations for programmatic in-housing were found to be cost efficiency, audience targeting, and campaign effectiveness. all of which are wrapped in brands’ desire to drive business by controlling their own destiny.  Extended reach surfaced near the top of the list in Italy and Germany.
  • The Dynamics of Programmatic In-Housing – Brands tend to prioritize in-house resource allocations for strategic activities but favor working with partners when executing tactical and technical programmatic functions such as data management and campaign optimization. In Spain, France and Germany, however, campaign strategy was more likely to be shared with agency partners than in Italy and the UK.


GermanyRead the report in German
ItalyRead the report in Italian
SpainRead the report in Spanish