The way the digital advertising industry has been operating for too long has been, in a sense, buying for the masses. Publishers are grouped into categories that have similar content and brands buy space for that generalized audience. This creates an immense amount of wasted media spending, a problem that brands have long been looking for a way to eliminate.
Data and targeting have come a long way, but are still generalized at best. What this means is that publishers’ valuable inventory is competing against all other websites running ads. This makes it extremely difficult to stand out from the crowd and hurts the overall chances of getting sustainable premium rates. This problem has led to publishers increasing the number of ads they run which actually diminishes overall return.