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What is Advertising Technology: The Basics

Poppy Higgins
Poppy Higgins

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What is Advertising Technology: The Basics

What is Advertising Technology: The Basics

Advertising technology, or AdTech, is a transformational driver used to describe systems, software, or tools used to run, deliver, manage, and optimize programmatic advertising campaigns… For publishers, it could be the process of generating more revenue from their advertising inventory.

What is Advertising Technology?

One of the best ways to make a living is to be an entrepreneur in advertising technology : shaping the future of how companies buy advertising and delivering a better customer experience. It’s a big deal and you might be in the minority. If you know what advertising technology is, you’re likely to know why advertising technology matters now, and why it will continue to matter in the future. Advertising technology is sometimes incorrectly identified as a subset of digital advertising. Infact, advertising technology is not a technology; it’s the delivery system and methods by which advertisers engage with consumers. User data drives AdTech, there are two ways of acquiring user data, third-party or first-party. Data refines Ad targeting.

AdTech Defined

Advertising technology is a broad term used by people working in advertising. If you’re an advertiser, you’re probably not going to care about how your ads are delivered. It’s more likely you want to know whether the ads you see are effective and which systems are currently on the market to help you make better decisions about how to reach your audience. For marketers, this is a slightly more nuanced question: How much do you really understand about how digital media works, and how much do you know about how it can be used to help you reach your goals? These are important questions to understand, especially in this age of automated advertising and complicated programmatic ad buying. Luckily, we’ve made it easy to learn more.


When you hear the term ‘advertising technology’ you are probably looking for a vague definition of what it means for advertisers. The concept is still quite fresh and its objective is yet to be understood by most. Therefore, we’ll do our best to explain the concept as succinctly as possible. Advertising is defined as “the practice of using electronic devices or systems for the production and delivery of messages in order to achieve economic, political, or social objectives.” Advertising itself is a series of strategies aimed at engaging users on a platform, user-friendly websites, and mobile applications to improve their engagement.

Why AdTech Matters

Because of the phenomenal scale of the modern advertising business, it’s never been more important for marketers to be able to measure campaign performance on a granular level — with real-time access to publishers’ real-time bidding (RTB) results, the ability to monitor other metrics (like ad viewability, impression volume, click-through rate, etc.) and place ads more effectively. AdTech platforms take the current ad auction model, which puts control of programmatic advertising with ad-tech platforms, and apply a centralized approach. In a centralized approach, programmatic buying is managed by AdTech companies like Moat and Targeted Victory, rather than ad buyers like Facebook, Google, and Twitter.

How does AdTech Work?

This simple explanation breaks down the basic process of how AdTech works: Buyers place an ad on the publisher’s site. This is called programmatic advertising, because the advertiser pays the publisher only when a viewer clicks on the ad. The publisher calls the ad servers to display the ad to a viewer on a web browser. The advertiser clicks on the ad, which results in the purchase of the advertisement. For marketers, it means they can quickly target audiences at a granular level.

AdTech Strategy

As in all technology sectors, marketing automation relies on a mix of trends and events which influence the space in which you operate and your opportunities. A survey of over 3,000 American CMOs revealed that 60% are investing more in content marketing than before. Content marketing appears to be one of the new pillars on which CMOs are building their 2021 strategies. AdTech allows the integration of a whole toolset into a singular system.


As we head towards 4IR (fourth Industrial Revolution), disruptive technology sectors are growing at a rapid rate, providing ample opportunity for innovative entrepreneurs to create scalable startups. Investors are deploying serious capital in these verticals, many venture capitalists are focusing on tech-driven startups. Founders of tech startups are receiving funding, provided they are connecting with the right investors for their startup at the right time.

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