Enhance Health Campaign Efficiency with Real-Time Bidding Optimization

August 23, 2023
Alissa Lopez

Enhance Health Campaign Efficiency with Real-Time Bidding Optimization

One of the biggest challenges in programmatic advertising is reaching specific target audiences quickly and at minimal cost; efficiency and precise targeting are key, but finding the right audience is often expensive. It all comes down to balancing audience targeting and budget allocation through real-time bidding optimization.

Campaign Challenges

Audience Targeting

Activating on target audiences is a complicated process where marketers must juggle audience segmentation, targeting criteria, effective creative assets, ad placement and real-time bidding. Given the complexity of the task, it’s no surprise that 46% of programmatic marketers report struggling to find an effective audience targeting solution.

To make sure they’re sending the right message to the right person (and in the right channel), brands must find a trusted data partner who knows everything about their ideal customers. Understanding exactly who an ideal customer is and what motivates them to act is essential in driving engagement down the sales funnel, especially in healthcare marketing. A partner with industry-specific knowledge will best understand and differentiate between the needs of each audience group, such as HCPs and patients.

Budget Allocation

Once you determine your campaign budget, the next step is to allocate spend to specific audiences, devices, channels, and creative. But, similar to audience targeting, this is no easy feat; 37% of marketers report struggling to allocate campaign budgets appropriately.

Not only do they have to ensure the budget is pacing efficiently throughout the campaign life cycle, but also they must keep in mind progress toward campaign goals—whether they are looking to achieve impressions, engagement, or conversion.

Audience targeting and budget allocation considerations intertwine via real-time bid strategy optimization, where budget is spent based on how relevant an audience is to the campaign goal.

What Is Real-Time Bidding and How Does it Work?

Real-time bidding automates ad delivery to specific users or sites across all accessible ad spaces at the same time, which enables brands to efficiently optimize spend, fulfill desired engagement with relevant audiences, and ultimately achieve campaign goals.

In order to monetize consumer traffic on digital properties, publishers make opportunities available for advertisers to show their brand messaging in ad slots. Within the milliseconds it takes to load a page, publishers and advertisers simultaneously send parameters through to exchanges in order to facilitate an auction for the ad space.

From the supply side, a bid request is sent through to an ad exchange containing information about the user, including available demographic data, location information, and opt-in browser history.

This is then matched against the list of buyers who have the same selected parameters within their buy-side setup. The advertiser that bids the highest amount will win the impression, and their ad is populated within the time it takes to load the environment.

Real-time bidding takes place in an open exchange, where all eligible buyers are able to compete for ad space, rather than a private auction, which only involves select buyers and a set floor price. In an exchange auction, advertisers compete for ad placement with their target audiences; the higher the competition, the higher the bids might need to be.

Real-time bidding is also different from preferred deals and programmatic guaranteed auctions, where buyers do not compete for ad space but agree to the publisher’s fixed price. These predetermined deals are fixed either before or during campaign setup, and they usually include a higher rate than other auction types.

Key Benefits of Real-Time Bidding Optimization for Health Campaigns

Real-time bidding helps create process efficiencies in price negotiations and ad trafficking while reducing waste on reaching the wrong audience—all while scaling with higher quality inventory that’s most relevant to the brand.

Among other things, real-time bidding allows brands to:


Before campaign launch, choose the bid strategy that aligns with your goals and automate ad price negotiation and trafficking to improve campaign efficiency mid-flight as changes in budget pacing, ad engagement, and conversion rates occur.


Bid higher or lower for health-based audiences based on their unique attributes, known, brand-relevant digital engagement, and prior prescription behavior for both target and competitor scripts. Reduce wasted spend on low-quality audiences and impressions by prioritizing bids for audiences that have historically engaged with the target or competitor brand.


Increase scale with higher quality audiences that have previously fulfilled desired engagement experiences, such as site visits and creative clicks or brand script writing.

Having access to historical digital and clinical engagement with a brand is essential for bid optimization to work pre-launch (before audiences are exposed). By accessing consumers’ past actions through HIPAA-compliant, health-based inventory partners, brands can understand consumer interests and tailor campaigns to fulfill their target market’s needs and wants—before wasting spend on irrelevant and ineffective marketing.

Use Cases for Real-Time Bidding Optimization

A brand’s key decision-makers, such as media managers, need to know and be able to measure both the strategic impact and material impact of a campaign. And while a media manager focuses on the bigger picture, the DSP users need to know the technical details and be able to make campaign tweaks on a dime.

With real-time bidding, a media manager or director can… With real-time bidding, a media planner or buyer can…
Find high-quality audiences based on their known, brand-relevant digital and clinical engagement. Automate ad delivery to relevant audiences or sites/pages across all accessible ad spaces at the same time.
Reach relevant audiences in the most cost-effective way by moving budget toward higher quality inventory. Ensure the budget is pacing effectively to reach campaign goals.
Create process efficiencies in price negotiations and ad trafficking while reducing waste. Alter bid strategy mid-flight as changes in budget pacing, ad engagement, and conversion rates occur.
Fulfill desired engagement experiences down the sales funnel by scaling impressions with higher value audiences. Optimize overall campaign performance based on real-time insights.

In an ideal world, marketers could easily connect all of the pieces of the puzzle to properly allocate their budget and reach the precise audiences that identify with their ads and message, engage with the creative, and ultimately convert to the brand.

Real-time bidding allows marketers to balance precise audience targeting with agile and efficient budget allocation. This means reduced wasted spend on low-quality audiences, greater control over bid strategy, and to-the-minute insights into the effectiveness of a brand’s campaign.

PulsePoint’s health-based bidding strategies and optimizations span every stage of the health journey, helping brands achieve goals and KPIs to maximize ROI. Contact us here to learn more about PulsePoint’s real-time bidding solutions.

Get more content delivered right to your inbox. Signup for the pulsepoint newsletter today

Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.

Get more content delivered right to your inbox. Signup for the pulsepoint newsletter today

Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.

Related Posts

No items found.