Programmatic Advertising For Beginners


Programmatic advertising has been dubbed advertising on steroids as it encompasses the use of artificial intelligence and machine learning to effectively purchase and serve ad inventory.The premise of programmatic advertising is that its very hyper focused and makes use of a number of digital platforms by placing an advertiser messaging in front of an audience as they are browsing the internet. A unique advantage is that the advertiser makes use of one platform but they have access to various ad placements on various publishers sites across the internet. The sophistication of programmatic advertising is that an advertiser has an opportunity to bid on an impression to be served for their ideal customer as they are browsing the internet. 

How Programmatic Advertising Works 

In order to simplify programmatic advertising we are going to use a narrative of how it works.An advertiser has an ideal customer profile whom they would like to advertise to which might include some of the following attributes (age, device,user location,user internet behavior characteristics which often none user identifiable information derived from cookies). As the user visits a publisher site there is information that is relayed about the visitor based on the known attributes to an auction platform. In the auction platform advertisers get to bid on the visitors who are visiting the publisher site in real time. The advertiser with the winning bid gets to have their ad displayed on the publisher site as the page loads. All this get to be undertaken in just a matter of milliseconds.

Technology Platforms in Programmatic Advertising 

There are various platforms that are involved in the programmatic advertising landscape namely demand side platform (DSP), data management platform (DMP), Ad exchange and SSP that we are going to be covering below.But the first starting point in the process is mainly the advertiser who specifies more details about the customer attributes that they would want to reach out to.

Demand Side Platform (DSP)

This is the platform or software that advertisers (businesses,brands and agencies) make use to purchase advertising (display,search,social,native,video and mobile) from a marketplace on which publishers list advertising inventory.

Data Management Platform( DMP)

It’s a platform that is used to store important user digital data such as customer data like (cookie ids and mobile identifiers),campaign data which in turn will be used for targeted advertising , personalization, content customization and more. 

Ad Exchange

This is a virtual marketplace on which publishers and advertisers trade digital ad inventory.The ad exchange does not serve the buyer or the seller as its an autonomous platform that enables programmatic ad real time depending on the supply and demand.

Supply Side Platform

It’s a technology platform that enables publishers and media owners to manage their ad inventory, sell and optimize available inventory( place ads) and receive revenue in an automated way.

Why Use Programmatic Advertising

There are numerous reasons as to why a brand / company or agency will make use of programmatic advertising in placing their messaging in front of the customer as they are browsing the internet. As mentioned earlier on programmatic advertising leverages heavily on artificial intelligence and machine learning alogrothims there are numerous benefits as below :

Greater Control And Efficiency

The power is in the hands of the advertiser as they have the ability to set up criteria as to who is eligible to view their ads. Therefore it enables the advertiser to have control as to who should be targeted on their campaigns and they can make changes in real time.


In some forms of advertising there is no transparency in relation to who is seeing the ads. At times there is no detailed reporting on the performance of campaigns , however through programmatic advertising advertisers have the opportunity to get detailed reports which will reveal who saw the ads , the costs associated with the delivery of ads and which sites are their ads being displayed on.

Real Time Reporting

One of the benefits of programmatic advertising relates to the fact that advertisers can view campaign data performance as the campaigns are running thereby enabling them to make necessary campaign optimizations in real time.

Advanced Targeting Options

Advertisers have the ability to target their ideal customers through cross device targeting capabilities.Cross device advertising feature is whereby ads are served to a user irregardless of the device they are using to access and browse on the internet.Most programmatic advertising platforms make use of data management platforms which have the ability to cookie map a user id’s for precise targeting.

When To Get Started With Programmatic Advertising

Any business or advertiser can get started with programmatic advertising at any time. We have our team ready to assist you with your requirements should you be interested in running any digital campaigns programmatically contact us today