Online Ad Procurement in Non-stationary Autobidding Worlds

Jason Cheuk Nam Liang · Haihao Lu · Baoyu Zhou

Great Hall & Hall B1+B2 (level 1) #1819
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Tue 12 Dec 3:15 p.m. PST — 5:15 p.m. PST


Today's online advertisers procure digital ad impressions through interacting with autobidding platforms: advertisers convey high level procurement goals via setting levers such as budget, target return-on-investment, max cost per click, etc.. Then ads platforms subsequently procure impressions on advertisers' behalf, and report final procurement conversions (e.g. click) to advertisers. In practice, advertisers may receive minimal information on platforms' procurement details, and procurement outcomes are subject to non-stationary factors like seasonal patterns, occasional system corruptions, and market trends which make it difficult for advertisers to optimize lever decisions effectively. Motivated by this, we present an online learning framework that helps advertisers dynamically optimize ad platform lever decisions while subject to general long-term constraints in a realistic bandit feedback environment with non-stationary procurement outcomes. In particular, we introduce a primal-dual algorithm for online decision making with multi-dimension decision variables, bandit feedback and long-term uncertain constraints. We show that our algorithm achieves low regret in many worlds when procurement outcomes are generated through procedures that are stochastic, adversarial, adversarially corrupted, periodic, and ergodic, respectively, without having to know which procedure is the ground truth. Finally, we emphasize that our proposed algorithm and theoretical results extend beyond the applications of online advertising.

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