Categories: Programmatic Advertising|By |9.5 min read|

Programmatic Advertising Landscape

Programmatic advertising is a super hot trend in the world of marketing, and it’s showing no signs of slowing down. In this article, we’ll examine some of its most recent developments and what the future of the programmatic landscape looks like.

But First – What Is Programmatic Advertising?

Programmatic advertising has transformed how brands reach and engage with their customers. While marketing vs advertising is often used interchangeably, they serve different purposes and require different strategies. It would be helpful to make sure we’re clear on this first.

Simply put, programmatic advertising refers to the use of software to conduct the ad buying process. It’s made up of a range of tools, strategies and components, but  its aim is always the same – to make the process of ad buying more efficient and effective. By eliminating people from the process wherever feasible, Programmatic Advertising technology promises to make the ad buying system more efficient, and hence cheaper. Programmatic advertising technology includes the Supply Side Platform (SSP) and the Demand Side Platform (DSP).

Programmatic advertising is an alternative solution to the conventional media buying system, which is often manual, labor-intensive and slow. In contrast, programmatic buying ad servers are powered by technology and data, making it much faster and easier to execute. Programmatic advertising enables advertisers to do digital marketing in an enhanced way.

Programmatic Real Time Bidding Definition

Programmatic Real Time Bidding (RTB) is a technique for automatically purchasing and selling digital advertising inventory. Participating in real-time auctions to bid on ad inventory, enables advertisers to efficiently and precisely reach their target audience. Real Time Bidding is most frequently used as a technique of selling advertising across the exchange (RTB). An ad exchange is only a facilitator, a clever technology platform that enables the programmatic buying and selling of ad inventory more effective.

An ad server allows you to handle all aspects of your digital marketing activities in one location, including media planning, ad trafficking, and targeting, as well as serving, optimization, verification, and reporting.

The Four Main Components Of Programmatic Advertising

Within the general ecosystem of programmatic ad buying exists four main domains that each play a role in facilitating transactions. Here’s an explanation of all four and their importance to keeping  the programmatic advertising landscape running smoothly.

Demand Side Platform (DSP)

A Demand Side Platform (DSP) is a software that allows advertisers to buy ad space in an automated fashion. In other words, it’s the tool that you, as an advertiser, would use to place your programmatic ad buys. It is a tool of advertisers that help them in organizing programmatic media buying.

DSPs give advertisers a lot of control over their ad campaigns. They allow you to set your own budget, target your audience, choose where your ads will appear and more.

Supply Side Platform (SSP)

Supply Side Platform (SSP) is a type of ad platform that helps publishers to sell their ad space in an automated way. It’s made up of a set of tools and protocols that work together to help publishers package their ad inventory and make it available to buyers in real-time. SSPs are basically the inverse of  DSPs – while DSPs help advertisers to buy ad space, SSPs help publishers to sell their ad inventory.

Ad Exchange

An ad exchange is a digital marketplace where publishers and advertisers can buy and sell ad space in real-time. Ad exchanges act as the middlemen between supply and demand in an ad network, connecting publishers with advertisers and facilitating the transactions that take place between them.

Ad exchanges are powered by real-time bidding (RTB), which is a type of auction that takes place in the milliseconds after an ad impression is served. In RTB auctions, advertisers compete against each other to win ad space, with the highest bidder winning the auction and securing the ad placement.

Data Management Platform (DMP)

A Data Management Platform (DMP) is a type of programmatic advertising platform that helps businesses to collect, organize and make use of data. In the context of programmatic advertising, DMPs are used to collect data from a variety of sources and then use it to inform and improve ad campaigns.

A Data Management Platform can be used to collect first-party data (data that you’ve collected yourself, such as through your website or CRM system) and second-party data (data that you’ve acquired from another source, such as a data partner). It can also be used to collect third-party data (data that’s been collected by someone else, such as an ad exchange).

Data Management Platforms are an essential part of any  programmatic advertising setup. They provide the data that’s needed to inform and optimize ad campaigns, making them more effective and efficient.

The Benefits of Programmatic Advertising

There are lots of reasons why programmatic advertising is such a popular choice among marketers. Advertisers use contextual targeting to show ads based on the context of a website. It is one of the several ways through which advertising professionals use programmatic advertising. Following are the main benefits of programmatic advertising.


Programmatic buying ad servers are powered by technology and data, making it much faster and easier to execute.


Programmatic buying can help you to get the most bang for your buck, as you’re able to laser-target your audience with precision.

Increased ROI

Because the programmatic ad exchange process is so efficient and cost-effective, it’s able to deliver a higher ROI than traditional methods.

Increased reach

Programmatic buying can help you to reach a wider audience than you would through traditional ad networks.


It uses machine learning for buying and selling ad space.

Enhance Targeting:

Your target audience can be reached more easily via programmatic advertising.

Improved targeting

Programmatic buying allows you to target your ads with precision, ensuring that your message is seen by your desired audience

Programmatic Advertising: The Industry’s Current State Of Affairs

The programmatic advertising landscape has seen exponential growth in recent years and is now the dominant form of digital advertising. In 2021, $81 billion – almost 81% – of total digital display dollars are estimated to have transacted programmatically.

This figure is only set to grow in the coming years, as more and more advertisers move away from traditional methods and towards programmatic ad networks.

Current Developments And Changes

The programmatic advertising industry is currently in a state of flux, with a number of major changes taking place and topics to be discussed. The following are some of the most notable.

The Rise Of Header Bidding Ad Networks

Header bidding is a type of programmatic buying that allows publishers to offer their ad inventory to multiple ad exchanges (ad network, Supply Side Platform etc.) simultaneously. This allows them to get the best possible ad server and price for their space.

The Increasing Relevance Of OTT And Connected TV

Over-the-top (OTT) and connected TV are two of the fastest-growing segments in the programmatic market. OTT refers to the delivery of content (usually video ads) over the internet, without the need for a cable or satellite subscription. Connected TV refers to televisions that are connected to the internet and can stream content from a variety of online sources. An exciting  new development in the world of OTT and connected TV is the advent of programmatic ad buying on these platforms. This presents a huge opportunity for marketers, as it allows them to target a captive audience with laser-precision.

The Rise Of Ad Blocking

Ad blocking is a major challenge for the programmatic industry. The number of mobile devices with ad blocking enabled has nearly doubled over the past five years alone, rising from 282 million to 586 million. This represents a huge loss of potential ad revenue for publishers and presents a major challenge for marketers. However, there are a number of ways to get around this problem, such as using native advertising or partnering with ad-blocker friendly platforms.

The GDPR And Other Data Privacy Regulations

The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is a set of regulations that was introduced in the European Union in May 2018. The GDPR has far-reaching implications for the programmatic industry, as it requires companies to get explicit consent from users before collecting or using their data. This has led to a number of changes in the programmatic industry, as well as inspired similar  regulations in other parts of the world, such as The California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA).

Dynamic Creative Optimization (DCO)

DCO is a type of programmatic buying that allows marketers to automatically generate ad creative that is optimized for each individual user. This is done by using data (such as demographics, location, interests, etc.) to personalize the ad creative. DCO is an important tool for marketers, as it allows them to create display advertising creatives that are more relevant and effective.

Programmatic Direct

Your direct-sold inventory’s negotiation and sale are automated by Programmatic Direct. You may negotiate Programmatic Guaranteed (reserved inventory that is guaranteed) and Preferred Deal (non-guaranteed, unreserved inventory) campaigns in Ad Manager using this technology platform.

What Does The Future of Programmatic Advertising Look Like?

The programmatic industry is continuing to evolve and change, and the future looks very exciting. Here are some of the most important trends that are set to shape the industry in the coming years.

An Increase In The Use Of Artificial Intelligence

Artificial intelligence (AI) is set to have a big impact on the programmatic industry. AI can be used for a variety of purposes, such as optimizing ad campaigns, identifying new marketing opportunities, and predicting consumer behavior.  The use of AI in programmatic ad networks is still in its infancy, but it is set to grow rapidly in the coming years.

The Continued Rise Of Mobile

Mobile devices are becoming increasingly important in the world of programmatic advertising. This is due to the fact that more and more people are using their smartphones and tablets to access the internet. This trend is only set to continue, which means that marketers need to make sure that their programmatic campaigns are optimized for mobile devices.

The Advent Of 5G

5G is the next generation of wireless technology, and it is set to have a major impact on the programmatic industry. 5G will provide faster internet speeds and lower latency, which will make it easier for marketers to deliver ads in real-time. This will be a major game-changer for the industry, as it will allow  marketers to deliver more targeted and effective ads.

The Growth Of Connected TV

Connected TV refers to televisions that are connected to the internet. This is a growing trend, as more and more people are using their TVs to stream content online. This presents a huge opportunity for marketers, as they can use programmatic advertising to target this growing audience.

Voice Search

Voice search is another trend that is set to have a big impact on programmatic advertising. This technology is becoming increasingly popular as more and more people begin to use voice assistants such as Siri and Alexa to search for information online.  Marketers need to be aware of this trend and ensure that their ads are optimized for voice search.

Final Thoughts

Programmatic advertising is a rapidly growing industry that is set to change the way that marketing is done. If you’re not already using programmatic advertising, now is the time to get on board.