How to Reduce Ad Fraud with Lead Verification and Scoring

Written on
Jun 4, 2014 
Frans Van Hulle  |

ADOTAS – Overall media spending has increased over the last couple of years, with new digital channels promising advertisers to connect to new core audiences. However, as digital marketing budgets increase, a large amount of revenues is lost due to rampant fraud. The Wall Street Journal reports that an estimated 36% of all web traffic is considered fraudulent, amounting up to $6 billion in the US alone.

A big part of the problem is so-called bot traffic.When advertisers launch online ad campaigns they expect the product or service to be seen by a real human customer who may potentially buy products or services. This system is being abused by fraudsters who have found a way to generate false views, clicks and site visits using robotic programs which dilutes metrics, as well as publisher inventory.

Although the situation is discouraging, most marketers don’t want to decrease their spending as digital is an ever growing channel. However, many advertisers often do not know where the traffic they’re buying is coming from, and this lack of transparency poses a real challenge for many marketers in maximizing the potential of digital advertising. That’s why it’s important to identify and rely on tools that can detect fraud and prevent it from entering your ecosystem in order to reduce hidden operational costs caused by fraud.

A good way to combat fraud is to look closely at lead generation forms. Although stopping fraud on the form is often already too late as media is mostly bought on CPM or CPC basis, good lead verification can give you real-time insights into which sources or channels are performing best and are attracting high-quality traffic. Bot traffic can be easily detected on the form by looking at the session length and other behavioral variables. Moreover, there are many companies that cross-reference data with external databases to validate contact information and addresses.

Further, sophisticated lead scoring systems give intricate prediction models into how likely leads are to convert into sales, measures by validity of data, user behavior and historic data analysis. Lead scoring can give buyers real insights into the user intent, and whether or not the incoming lead is an actual human.

So, perhaps you may be affected by fraudulent traffic, but marketers need to realize the potential of all the data they sit on and using it to their advantage. Especially analyzing user data and behavior on lead gen forms can help you to identify and shut down fraudulent channels.

This is of course only part of the solution, and perhaps it doesn’t prevent damage from being done, but lead scoring and verification will help you optimize your traffic and focus on traffic with fewer, or no fraudulent clicks.

Frans Van Hulle is CEO of ReviMedia, which has developed a proprietary lead exchange platform, LXP®, that verifies, scores and delivers leads in under a second to buyers, giving them complete insights into source and quality of the traffic. Buyers can also choose which sources they want to block or prioritize, therefore giving them the opportunity to gain more control over the buying process.

Frans is a “serial entrepreneur” with more than 12 years’ experience in the online marketing business, focusing on launching international business ventures.  In 2000, he co-founded Emexus, a mobile services company that quickly established itself as a global leader in mobile marketing and entertainment.  In 2005, following Emexus’ success, Frans moved his operation from Amsterdam to New York City, where the company earned over $20 million in revenues.  When Emexus was purchased by 2waytraffic, a Sony Pictures company, Frans continued on as Managing Director of Mobile Content for North America.

Frans relocated to Panama in 2008, where he founded Agro2, an agribusiness focused on sustainable agriculture and bio fuel production.  In 2010, Fransco-founded ReviMedia with Bas Offers, based on the idea of building a lead generation platform from the ground up, that specializes in developing and executing direct response marketing campaigns. Frans is an active investor and is always exploring possibilities for new business ventures, such as domain acquisitions and development.

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