PulsePoint launches health vertical for programmatic advertising

The advertising and marketing industry as a whole is becoming increasingly programmatic-focused, with programmatic making up more than half of digital display ad spending in the U.S.

PulsePoint, a programmatic advertising technology platform, launched a healthcare vertical designed to help healthcare companies boost their spending on programmatic advertising. 

“We identified the need for solutions within the healthcare vertical that combine the efficiency and data precision of programmatic with the engagement of content marketing to create the best way for healthcare marketers to find their audience at scale,” said PulsePoint CEO Sloan Gaon, in a news release.

The company appointed Chris Neuner as SVP and GM of digital health solutions to lead the new division. Neuner previously held commercial leadership positions at health performance marketing company Quality Health and is a founder of the independent healthcare agency Greater Than One.

Want to learn more about programmatic for the pharmaceutical industry? Attend MM&M's Big Data for Big Decisions event in New York on December 7. 

“Healthcare needed the thought leadership and capabilities and solutions to drive programmatic,” said Neuner. “It's a tough market to break into because it has a lot of regulations and nuances. At the core, it has to provide education in a marketing environment.”

The advertising and marketing industry as a whole is becoming increasingly programmatic-focused, with programmatic making up more than half of digital display ad spending in the U.S., according to a report released earlier this year by eMarketer. 

Pharma marketers are traditionally considered slow adopters of programmatic ad buying but a number of agencies have invested in programmatic businesses for the healthcare industry in recent years. This June, patient education media company AccentHealth acquired programmatic health platform PageScience. Intouch Solutions also expanded its services to include a programmatic option for media buying, with the launch of Insight Media Marketplace in August.

See also: The Programmatic Movement: A Programmatic Primer

PulsePoint Health is built with brand safety rules for replicating a whitelist environment to avoid legal issues that could come about if ads are placed next to user-generated content, said Neuner. 

In addition, the platform has a contextualizer feature, which seeks to ensure that search results are relevant to healthcare and specific diseases and conditions. And it has sentiment tools that listen specifically for health terms and brand names to understand what people are saying about brands in the marketplace.

“We're creating a buzz index about what people are saying about brands and using it as an analytics tool,” said Neuner. “Did it improve sentiment about a brand or hurt sentiment?”

Neuner declined to name its clients, but said that PulsePoint Health is working with pharmaceutical companies, hospitals, over-the-counter, and clinical trial recruitment companies. 

“There are many different ways to ignite data,” said Neuner. “Ultimately, PulsePoint Health plays in data in allowing the exchange to access data to make better decisions, either from a scrolling perspective or straight into the process of showing this ad to the person — yes or no — or thinking of the person from a retargeting standpoint.”