Media Buying 101: Latest Trends to Leverage in 2023

Media Buying 101: Latest Trends to Leverage in 2023

For media buyers new to the space or looking for a refresh (Media Buying 101), 2023 holds exciting new opportunities to optimize ad spend and connect with target audiences across the evolving media landscape.

Paid Media Buying Trends 2023

Paid media will continue seeing increased focus and investment in 2023. Trends like retail media, CTV, and social commerce will expand opportunities to influence consumers along the purchase journey.

Retail Media

Retail Media networks like Amazon DSP and Walmart Connect offer targeted ad placements on e-commerce sites where users are actively browsing and shopping. As commerce continues shifting online, retail media allows brands to reach audiences when purchase intent is highest. Strategically optimizing ad spend on retail sites will be crucial for driving conversions.

CTV (connected TV)

CTV (connected TV) has experienced remarkable growth as consumers shift to streaming television content through internet-connected devices. CTV provides engaging ad experiences on the big screen with less clutter and distraction than linear TV. Media buyers will allocate more budget to CTV as audiences fragment across streaming services.

Social Commerce

Social Commerce integrates seamless shopping experiences into social platforms through product tags, shoppable posts, and more. Social media will be a key channel for direct-response campaigns focused on driving product sales.

Digital Advertising Trends 2023

Digital channels, formats, and buying methods will dominate media strategies thanks to precise targeting capabilities and robust measurability. Trends like programmatic buying, privacy-focused tactics, and optimizing for multi-device usage will be focus areas.

Programmatic buying

Programmatic buying uses automation and data to purchase digital ad inventory through instantaneous auctions. It provides improved audience targeting and faster performance optimization. Programmatic enables buyers to be nimbler and more efficient. Brand safety and ad fraud prevention will be particular concerns.


Privacy Changes like Apple’s ATT and Google’s Privacy Sandbox will push marketers to refine strategies around first-party data and zero-party data (information consumers intentionally share). Respecting consumer privacy while still targeting effectively will be crucial.

Multi-platform Optimization

Multi-platform Optimization requires understanding how audiences interact with content across devices like desktop, mobile, tablets, and CTV. Crafting consistent messaging and experiences across platforms will allow for deeper consumer engagement.

Programmatic Advertising Trends 2023

Programmatic ads use real-time bidding and automation for placement. Instead of negotiating with individual publishers, inventory is purchased through ad exchanges. Key programmatic trends include:

  • Increased use of private marketplaces for premium, brand-safe inventory
  • Leveraging first-party data for better custom audience targeting
  • Expanding into emerging formats like connected TV and digital out-of-home

As programmatic evolves, transparency, viewability, and measurability must improve. However, the efficiency of programmatic buying will continue driving adoption.

Latest Trends in Advertising

As consumer behaviours and technology evolve rapidly, agility and optimization will be crucial.

  • Robust A/B testing of ad creative, messages, formats, and placements allows brands to iterate based on performance data.
  • Multi-touch attribution provides a holistic view of media effectiveness by weighing the influence of different touchpoints across channels. This enables better optimization.
  • Flexibility in strategies and planning will help brands adapt to changes in the ad landscape.

Best Media Buying Trends 2023

Here are some top media buying strategies needed to succeed in 2023:

  • Omnichannel coordination: Synergistic campaigns across platforms/formats to engage audiences everywhere.
  • Agile optimization: Quickly iterating on creative, messaging, and placements based on data.
  • Sophisticated measurement: Quantifying channel performance accurately with multi-touch attribution.
  • Retail media optimization: Influencing consumers on e-commerce sites where buying intent is highest.
  • CTV expansion: Connected TV provides engaged viewership amid fragmenting audiences.
  • Programmatic evolution: Using automation for improved targeting and operational efficiency.

Other media buying models beyond programmatic continue evolving as well, including:

  • traditional media buying software to streamline legacy media planning
  • hiring specialized media buyers and agencies
  • producing infomercials to test and sell products directly
  • working with Google Ads reps for search and display recommendations
  • leveraging performance marketing tactics to optimize for direct response

Radio remains an impactful traditional medium, with buying methods like:

  • hiring dedicated radio media buyers
  • working with radio media buying firms
  • using programmatic audio platforms
  • collaborating directly with radio sales reps

No matter the strategy, aligning media mix and tactics to overall campaign goals and KPIs will be vital for driving performance. Embracing the latest trends can help buyers maximize impact and return on ad spend.

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