DoubleVerify\u00a0(\u201cDV\u201d), a leading software platform for digital media measurement, data and analytics, today announced the results of a new study examining publisher challenges amid COVID-19. For the study, DV\u2019s Publisher Division commissioned a survey of 300 executives in the digital media sector, including digital publishers and supply-side platforms. The survey was conducted online from September 11-18, 2020. Nearly half struggle with billing management, delaying payments As a result of the coronavirus pandemic impacting marketing plans, many advertisers have paused or reduced campaign spend. While publishers are facing revenue pressure, DV found that payments are being delayed due to challenges with billing. In fact, nearly half (47%) of all respondents stated that their organization \u201clacks the resources to support the billing and reconciliation process across our customers, causing payment times to increase.\u201d \u201cClosing the books is one of the biggest operational drains for publishers, seriously impacting revenue and cash flow at the worst possible time,\u201d said Steven Woolway, EVP of Business Development, DoubleVerify. \u201cPublishers and advertisers need to work together to streamline pacing and delivery discrepancies, and to reduce billing cycles.\u201d Three-quarters say they spend too much time processing data Data management remains a key operational and revenue hurdle for publishers. Nearly three-quarters (73%) indicated that their organization spends \u201ctoo much time manually processing inventory performance and revenue data.\u201d Similarly, 80% stated the excessive time spent on data collection and processing \u201climits our ability to optimize inventory performance and revenue.\u201d \u201cPublishers have to pull disparate data from all of these scattered connections, including DSPs, SSPs, and exchanges, then they have to consolidate, organize and normalize that data,\u201d said Woolway. \u201cIt\u2019s a cumbersome and repetitive process that takes resources away from more revenue-producing initiatives.\u201d Communication is the biggest campaign delivery challenge While the majority (67%) of respondents rated their organization\u2019s campaign delivery process (the management of developing, running and measuring campaigns) positively, one-third (33%) described it negatively, as either \u201cpoor\u201d or \u201cfair.\u201d The greatest campaign delivery challenges cited were \u201ccommunication and synchronization across internal and external parties\u201d (3.63 average ranking with 1 being the most challenging and 7 the least) and \u201cnot enough time to focus on analysis and optimization\u201d (3.83 average ranking). \u201cFrom pre-launch planning to troubleshooting, communication misalignment on campaign delivery can undercut a publisher\u2019s ability to meet the buyer\u2019s goals,\u201d said Pieter Mees, VP Video & Publisher Product, DoubleVerify. \u201cPublishers, advertisers and vendors need to be clear and transparent with one another to satisfy objectives and expectations. Publishers also said they don\u2019t have sufficient time to analyze and optimize campaign delivery, which is critical. This could stem from time spent on onerous, manual activities, like data processing.\u201d Publishers cite impression-level fraud as a key threat\u00a0 When asked whether real-time inventory quality data (e.g., viewability, brand safety, invalid traffic, etc.) was easily accessible for optimization, 80% of publishers responded that it was. However, there were some challenges \u2013 namely \u201clack of consistent media quality measurement methodologies between advertiser clients\u201d (2.84 average ranking with 1 being the most challenging and 5 the least) and \u201cthe ability to proactively identify and troubleshoot impression-level fraud issues\u201d (2.92 average ranking). \u201cDifferent advertisers often use a different combination of solutions to evaluate media quality or performance, impacting a publisher\u2019s ability to make sense of how their inventory is viewed or deliver on goals,\u201d said Mees. \u201cTo solve for that, publishers would benefit from better data pipelines and the ability to investigate data discrepancies to streamline their workflows and maximize their media\u2019s performance.\u201d On the issue of fraud, Mees added, \u201cAd fraud isn\u2019t just a buyer issue \u2013 it also eats into a publisher\u2019s resources and monetization opportunities. Like advertisers do, publishers also benefit from technology to easily identify and act on invalid traffic to prevent fraud in real-time. This helps them prove the value of their inventory to media buyers.\u201d In August, DoubleVerify announced its publisher division to spearhead the company\u2019s relationship with the publisher community, and to lead product innovation efforts designed to help publishers maximize revenue yield and reduce friction with buyers. The division features over 60 employees globally developing actionable insights and supporting R&D and engineering, all in service of helping publishers improve transparency, increase efficiency and maximize inventory monetization. DV serves over 110 publishers, including more than half of the top-100 Comscore-ranked web publishers \u2013 fortified through the company\u2019s acquisition of Ad-Juster in 2019.