Digital Marketing

Programmatic Advertising 101: Basics You Should Know


The next big thing in advertising, programmatic advertising, was on the minds of everyone in the industry. Many have heard of it because of its great success in the US. Currently, there are estimates that 88% of display ads will be purchased programmatically in the US by the end of 2021.

For those who haven’t yet been able to find out what it really is, we’ve made programmatic advertising easier for you.

What is programmatic advertising?

Simply put, buying digital advertising using software is known as programmatic ad buying. Traditionally, this is done with tenders, offers, negotiations, etc., while programmatic buying of purchases using machines and algorithms shows space.

Just because the name includes “programmatic” doesn’t mean the entire process has been automated. The traditional process involves preparing ad tags or ad orders. This is quite a tedious and labor intensive task. Programmatic advertising gives people more time to optimize and improve the ads.

How effective is programmatic advertising?

Programmatic advertising has many benefits that work together to make it so effective. Some of them are:

  • The to reach It offers enormous possibilities as it supports multiple ad exchanges as well as networks. This helps advertisers access a larger ad space that can span up to thousands of websites at the same time. It’s affordable and a lot less boring.

  • Because advertisers and publishers have real-time access to all ad placement data and related activity, transparency is maximized. This has proven to be a key issue in the industry.

  • As mentioned in the last point, advertisers and publishers can benefit from access to real-time data and advanced reporting on ad placements easy to optimize their campaigns.

  • Purchasing ads programmatically ensures that advertisers have access to a large inventory of ads that spans multiple ad exchanges and networks that are just a click away relevance the ads for your target audience will be maximized

What are SSP and DSP?

There are several platforms that help advertisers and publishers with programmatic advertising. There are different types of platforms, e.g. B. Demand-Side Platform (DSP) and Supply-Side Platform, Ad Exchange and Data Management Platform.

SSP works to manage the publisher’s inventory. After submitting the webpage that will act as the source of the ad, if everything has been agreed about the ad exchange, the publisher inserts a pixel on their page to monitor visitor behavior.

Likewise, DSP is for advertisers. This type of platform is designed to speed up the advertisers’ process. They submit their bids on the platform and then the platform makes the decisions for them. Decisions include deciding which ad will be placed where to get the most clicks.

How is programmatic advertising done?

In order to get the most out of programmatic advertising, the following steps must be observed:

1. Understand your marketplace

This is the first step in all ad formats and it still cannot be stressed enough. As this is a new zone in the advertising world, it will again require getting used to the whole process.

Lots of new ideas and terms are going to come your way and you need to be prepared. You should look carefully at each term so that you are not caught off guard later in the process.

2. Set goals

Another requirement to achieve your goal is critical to advertising. Search through the data you already have to choose the type of advertising awareness you need, then pick a strategy that suits it.

This will prove extremely helpful as you work on setting your short and long term goals. You should only choose programmatic advertising if you know exactly why you need it. Don’t do it just to do it.

3. Human engagement factor

Programmatic advertising does not mean that there is no human investment between all algorithms and machines. Since there are many types of platforms, some offering fully managed services while others offer half, much remains to be done.

In addition, many offer only technical assistance, which means that the task of performing the programmatic shopping activities is yours only. The work doesn’t just end here either.

You have to hire qualified employees who plan, control and process the optimization. To get the most out of programmatic advertising, you need to strike the right balance between automation and human engagement.

4. Save the mark

Contrary to what we like to believe, even programs can go wrong. Sometimes programmatic ads are displayed in the wrong place due to their reliance on algorithms.

To ensure that such an error does not occur, the demand-side blacklist must be continuously updated and checked for inappropriate websites. There are platforms that allow you to exclude entire categories from your ad spend. This has proven very helpful.

Another option is to use the help of a whitelist. This will show you a list of the sites that have been approved and not disapproved, and it will ensure that your ads don’t end up where they shouldn’t be.

5. Be wary of fraud

According to reports, these types of ads can show anywhere from 44% to 55%, but bot scam costs digital advertisers a significant amount each year.

However, their standard 16% are much lower compared to other display ads. However, you should always monitor your campaigns to be sure.


Some of the famous names that use programmatic advertising effectively are The Economist, IHG, and Audi. Little by little, more and more names are being added to this list, and people are collecting how it works and how it should be used to get the most out of this technology. I hope the points above provide some clarity about programmatic advertising.

For more information on such content, please visit the Digital Ready blog section. Also, check out the different digital marketing courses we offer and take your first step to becoming a digital marketer.


Jeffrey Rabinowitz