3 Programmatic Campaign Mistakes to Avoid

In January of 1986 the space shuttle Challenger exploded after 73 seconds into its historic launch where teacher Christa McAuliffe would have been the first teacher in space. An investigation would reveal that a tiny O-ring was responsible for the disaster. A tiny detail that could have saved several lives.

Luckily and as I always tell my team we don’t work in a hospital or on a spaceship so nobody is going to die because of a campaign going to shit or failing to launch on time. However, there are some things that should be checked twice and if possible QA’d by a second pair of eyes.

If you have the resources, the best practice is to always have a second pair of eyes on a campaign setup and to check each and every detail. Another great tip is to use a programmatic campaign setup checklist.

Alright, let’s get to it.

1. Spending cap-first and most important a spending cap, everything else can go off the rails but if you don’t have a spending cap in place, you may wind up losing your job if the campaign overspends significantly. A couple of years ago, there was a trader in an agency that forgot to put a spending cap and ran up a $2MM bill overnight in a popular DSP-obviously he lost his job. In addition, ask your DSP’s if they can also place a safeguard trigger across all your campaigns-for example, if any campaign goes over $10k for the day it will automatically shut down.

2. Tags having the wrong creatives-if you launch a campaign without testing the creatives to make sure they are 1. Correct concept and 2. Correct landing page you could run into problems. Especially if the adserver trafficking is done by someone else. Check your tags or you could be sending users elsewhere and you will sit there wondering why nothing is converting.

3. More on creatives– if you launch a campaign and notice that it is not consuming the daily spend limit or impression cap, your creatives may have been disapproved by the adexchanges. The pickiest adexchanges in my opinon are Google and MSN. If everything is correct in your campaign but you just aren’t spending go into the the creatives and check their status.

For example, in Mediamath go to appstore>creative approval status app and select the campaign.
mediamath creative approval

In Appnexus select advertiser> creatives>creative details
appnexus creatives approval

These are just three tiny details that can make a world of difference in your campaign. If you want to take your campaign skills to the next level, I encourage you to signup and learn more about programmatic.

To your success,


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.