Understanding Programmatic Creative: The Role of AI

Gang Chen, Peihong Xie, Jing Dong, Tianfu Wang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

59 Scopus citations


In this article, we expand the concept of programmatic advertising to include programmatic creative as a vital component. While artificial intelligence (AI) has already automated the media buying process, the advertising creative process still requires extensive human efforts. Such discrepancy calls for AI to transform the advertising creative process. We provide a framework for understanding and investigating programmatic creative by drawing evidence from the advertising industry in China. We specifically discuss how big data and machine learning algorithms underpin programmatic advertising. We argue that AI will integrate programmatic buying and programmatic creative in the future. We also discuss the technological, regulatory, and legal challenges faced by programmatic creative. We argue that new theories and methods are needed to conduct research in this area and provide guidance for the advertising industry.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)347-355
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Advertising
Issue number4
StatePublished - 8 Aug 2019


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