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What Is Programmatic Advertising?

Do you need programmatic advertising explained in clear and speedy terms?

What Does Programmatic Mean?

The future of advertising will be personalized, automated, immersive, experiential and measurable. It won’t feel like advertising.

Briefly Define Programmatic Advertising

Programmatic advertising is also called programmatic buying or marketing – they all refer to the same thing.

Here’s a good definition:

Programmatic advertising is the automated buying and selling of digital ad space.
Software uses collected data to decide which adverts to use, and how much it costs.
The goal for advertisers is to get their ad shown to the right person, at the right time, for the least cost. The goal for ad space sellers is to fill their inventory and make money.

Here’s a simplified definition:

The process of using software to automatically buy and sell ads online.

The Two Ad Perspectives

There are two perspectives when it comes to programmatic ad buying or selling.

  1. The Brand Perspective
  2. The Marketers Perspective


It gets a little more complex if you lose track of which perspective you’re coming from. You need programmatic advertising explained from both of these points of view, for greater content.

The Brand Perspective

The Marketing Perspective

Demand Side Platform (DSP)

Supply Side Platform (SSP)

A History of Programmatic Marketing

Traditional Advertising

Programmatic Advertising

  • Real-time bidding is the most common programmatic advertising mechanism
  • Software automatically places an ad in the time it takes a visitor to load a website
  • The ad is placed where and when it is likely to get the best returns
  • Ad spend is tracked, monitored, and optimized for maximum efficiency

Programmatic Advertising 101

An Example of Programmatic Advertising

Types of Programmatic Ads Explained

Search Advertising

Display Advertising

Social Advertising

Video Advertising

In-Stream Advertising

Native Advertising

Shopping Ads

In-App Advertising

Metasearch Advertising (aka: Hotel Ads)

Online Travel Agencies (OTA) (aka: Travel Ads)

Mobile Advertising

Audio Advertising

Digital Out Of Home (DOOH) Ads

Frequently Asked Questions

Display Advertising vs. Programmatic: Are They the Same?

Real Time Bidding vs. Programmatic: Are They the Same?

How Much Does Programmatic Advertising Cost?

Why Should Brands Care About Programmatic Marketing?

What Have We Learned?