GroupM, Leading Advertisers, Publishers and Measurement Companies Launch Brand Safety Initiative to Improve Trust in China’s Digital Supply Chain

(Shanghai, June 9th, 2017) – GroupM China today announced the launch of Brand Safety Initiative for a safer and more accountable digital advertising environment for advertisers. The project includes leading advertisers such as L’Oréal, Nestlé, Mars, Wrigley, Mercedes-Benz, Jaguar Land Rover, Huawei, Honor, Shell HELIX, GSK, Colgate and Darlie; key publishers like Tencent, iQiyi, Youku, Mango TV; qualified independent tech measurement companies like RTBAsia, Miaozhen Systems, AdMaster; and accreditation and standards body China Media Assessment Council. Many more leading parties are poised to join the program. This is the first multi-party effort across the China digital advertising eco-system, conducting to a healthy and constructive transformation in Chinese digital marketing.

As part of GroupM’s global strengthening of brand safety that started a year ago, this initiative aims to resolve complex but important issues including viewability, fraud, and online contextual brand safety. It focuses on these four key areas to ensure that a brand’s ad must be seen by a human in the chosen target audience within a safe environment.

GroupM sees invalid traffic as the issue with the greatest urgency in China as it has direct impact on industry credibility and advertisers’ investment confidence. Tackling it calls for an industry consensus on measurement accreditation and standards. It is the priority of the Brand Safety Initiative. The China Media Assessment Council (CMAC) is tasked to assess and certify that independent tech measurement companies have the capability to identify inflated traffic count. The measuring process and result will be accepted and trusted by all parties involved. The concerted effort can minimize invalid traffic, leading to a safe environment for advertisers.

“Comparing to other difficulties like viewability or online contextual brand safety, invalid traffic is a matter of credibility and the core of the issue,” Patrick Xu, CEO of GroupM China and WPP China said, “GroupM is committed to ensuring our clients have access to the best inventory. I believe Brand Safety Initiative will lead to a safer and more reliable digital advertising environment, to the ultimate benefit of advertiser and the stable development of the industry.”

“The Chinese digital advertising market is among the biggest in the world,” CHEN Yong, one of the most important initiators and supporters of CMAC and Secretary General of IIACC (Interactive Internet Advertising Committee of China) said, “This initiative is a united stance on making a meaningful and material change in the digital advertising industry. China has unique challenges, mostly around the ability to measure the media and setting up common standards. We look forward to realizing a thriving Chinese digital advertising market, utilizing GroupM’s global experience and the joint efforts from all partners along the value chain. ”

Stephane Rinderknech, CEO of L’Oréal China said, “China is having an incredible digital evolution. Creating a healthy digital advertising environment means providing an environment with mutual understanding and trust for advertisers, publishers and consumers as well as related authorities. This will also enable a flow of accredited and verified advertising information to the public.”

Kris Yang, Media Director of Nestlé China said, “Digital is an exciting medium. We are glad to work with our partners on improving standards, measurement and supply chain integrity, which in turn will reduce risk and ensure brands’ ad budgets are spent effectively on high quality inventory. For publishers, with a trusted set of measurements for monitoring and transacting on brand safe inventory, they will gain more brands’ trust.”

CHEN Xiao, Sales Vice President of iQiyi said, “We share GroupM’s brand safety principles. As one of the largest video media platforms in China, we are committed to the perfecting of the measurement and assessment standards for delivering more effective and safe environment for advertisers. We will band together to bolster the confidence of brands in the digital ecosystem. ”

TAN Yansong, National GM – Sales Operations Center of Youku said, “As one of the leading video hosting service providers, Youku is committed to the assurance of brand safety for advertisers. Together with GroupM, CMAC and other partners, we look forward to the establishment of an impartial monitoring and measurement system for the promotion of the industry.”

About GroupM

GroupM is the world’s leading media investment company responsible for more than $50B (COMvergence) in annual media investment through agencies including Mindshare, MediaCom, Wavemaker, Essence and m/SIX, as well as the outcomes-driven programmatic audience company, Xaxis. GroupM creates competitive advantage for advertisers via its worldwide organization of media experts who deliver powerful insights on consumers and media platforms, trading expertise, market-leading brand-safe media, technology solutions, addressable TV, content, sports and more.