These Demand Side Platforms (DSPs) use technology to automate processes and they use math to improve results.
Programmatic ads are pre-determined algorithms that are programmed to buy ads automatically for the advertiser.
“So, it’s like real-time bidding?”
Yes and no. Real-time bidding is a form of programmatic ad buying.
Real-time bidding is when criteria are automatically matched in an auction-styled environment, and bids for that ad spot (a single impression) are placed.
There are certain platforms that will allow you to buy the spot directly without having a bid auction with other marketers.
In this case, the buying is still programmatic, but it is no longer real-time bidding.
This type of deal is called programmatic direct.
Anyway, onto the pros and cons!