The world of advertising has many ups and downs but most importantly, it has been known to be extremely beneficial for marketers around the world. For newbies, Advertising is nothing short of an industry that is riddled with complected terms. these terms make it difficult to understand the differences between Advertising Networks and how to use them effectively. It is the duty of experts within the industry to make it easy for Advertisers and Publishers to understand the key terms and how to use them effectively. In this article, we state and describe all the types of advertising Networks.
What is Advertising Networks?
What is Advertising Networks?
Advertising Networks which is also known as “Ad Network” are online advertising technologies that make it easy for Advertisers to create and distribute Ads to publishers Ad spaces. this simple means, Advertising Network simply connects Advertisers and Publishers for easy advertising and monetization. One could simply say, the main function of Ad Network is to aggregate publishers inventory to fit advertisers demand. On the other hand, Advertising Networks provide advantages to advertisers as it enables them to create and target their Ads to a specific audience while at the same time, advertisers can track their results through impressions and clicks, video average watch time. The flexibility the system provides for publishers and advertisers is the simply the connection that benefits each party.
Mobile Ad Networks work just like any other typical Ad Network, the difference is that, these type of Ad Networks put more emphases in targeting only mobile traffic, these traffic are traffic that is generated only from mobile Apps, Mobile search results, mobile display Ads etc. The advertising industry has seen a massive change since mobile phones became smarter, the advertising industry has done a great job utilizing mobile device users and the results are fantastic. Mobile Ad Networks give advertisers to target specific mobile audience. For instance, markets advertising Apps could use mobile Ad Networks to target only mobile user who is mostly potential customers. it makes sense to use mobile ad networks as all types of ads can be displayed or shown on mobile devices such as banner ads, text ads, interstitial ads, In-App Ads etc.
The video below gives very detailed explanation of the advertising ecosystem
What is PPC Ad Networks?
Pay per click (PPC) whic is also known as Cost per click (CPC) is basically an Internet or digital advertising model used by Advertising Networks. This makes PPC Ad Networks to be Ad Networks that specifically use only PPC pricing model for their adverting. It is one of the most used advertising price models which is easily understood by advertisers and some can argue it is the most preferred pricing model used by both advertising networks and advertisers. PPC advertising model comes in two different types: The Flat rate PPC and Bid-based PPC
The Flat rate PPC: This model of pricing specifies that the advertisers and the Ad network or the Publisher agrees on a flat rate price per clicks generated. For instance, the advertiser and the publishers may agree on 0.5 per each click generated. In some cases, Ad Networks or the publisher will charge based on each Ad space on the webpage.
Bid-based PPC: In this model, several advertisers compete against each other in an auctioning system hosted by the Ad network. The advertisers set the maximum amount they are willing to pay for each specific ad position on the publisher’s web pages. Keywords are often used to enhance the target while the auctioning system is triggered automatically each time a visitor triggers the ad position or spot.
What is CPM Ad Networks?
First I will like to explain what is CPM in the simplest way, Cost per impression (CPI), also known as Cost per thousand impressions (CPM) is an advertising pricing model which pays the publisher a fixed amount for every 1000 impressions or page-views generated. After understanding what CPM is, it will be easier to understand what CPM Ad Networks is which is, Ad Networks what specifically use this type of pricing method for both advertisers and publishers. Some publishers prefer this pricing model due to its flexibility. The calculation of CPM is taken from the set advertising cost and the number of impressions which expressed as Cost per impression ($) = Advertising cost ($) / Number of Impressions (#).
Total cost for running the ad is $15,000.
The total estimated audience is 2,400,000 people.
($15,000/2,400,000) = $0.00625
CPM is calculated as: $0.00625 x 1000 (meaning per thousand impressions) = $6.25
What is eCPM?
Effective Cost Per Mille (eCPM) is measurement system used by advertisers, Advertising Networks and Publishers to estimate the actual value of advertising cost. eCPM is calculated in the following manner: Cost-per-Click (CPC) auction calculated by multiplying the CPC times the click-through rate (CTR), and multiplying that by one thousand. (Represented by: (CPC x CTR) x 1000 = eCPM.).
There are two banners: “Curious Apps” and “Sensor Apps”.
The publishers earn $1 per click.
Both banners were published for the duration of one week.
“Curious Apps” was viewed by 5000 visitors from which 20 clicked on it.
“Sensor Apps” was viewed by 5000 visitors from which 70 clicked on it.
This shows that:
“Curious Apps” has an eCPM of $7 ($1 * 20/5000) * 1000
“Sensor Apps” has an eCPM of $20 ($1 * 70/5000) * 1000
What is Video Ad Networks?
Video Ad Networks are Ad Networks that specifically sell online video inventory across multiple platforms and devices. These Ad Networks focus online video ads which mostly display before the main video is played also known as “Display video Ads” online video advertising comes in different forms: in-stream, out-stream, interactive, in-game and webpage based videos, creating video messaging before, during, and after consumers take in content on their mobile devices or desktop. Video advertising allows Internet marketers to engage their audience with engaging video ads in very effective ways. YouTube is the biggest video Advertising platform on the Internet while several other Ad Networks are also grabbing the share of the market. Video Ad Networks also use CPC and CPM methods for video advertising.
What is Banner Ad Networks?
To answer this we first have to understand what is banner advertising. Banner advertising is refers to the use of a rectangular graphic display that comes in various forms and places on top, bottom or sides of a web-page. Now that you understand what is banner advertising, let’s jump into Banner Ad Networks: these are Ad network that includes banners in their Ad units. publishers or advertisers will be able to place ads in various banner sizes and formats of their choices while publishers also will be able to monetize with various banner sizes and formats from such Ad Networks. Many Ad Networks have banner advertising as part of their Ad units and ad inventory.
First let’s look at what is native advertising: I would make this simple for you to understand, Native advertising is simply placing Ads on the platforms that match the content of the Ads. Thus, putting ads on content that matches the ads with the intent to target a specific audience. A typical example of this may display video ads on videos that are related to the ad video or putting sports equipment ads on sports blogs or advertising new cars on car review YouTube channels or car review websites and blogs.
What is Ad Exchange Networks?
Lets simply put it as an advertising technology designed to enable the selling and buying of media advertising inventory across multiple Ad Networks. Ad Exchange platforms use a bidding pricing system. This process is entirely technology driven. Some of the most popular Ad exchanges are: AppNexus, AOL‘s Marketplace, Microsoft Ad exchange, OpenX, Rubicon Project Exchange, DoubleClick, and Smaato among many others.
What is Interstitial Advertising Networks?
It will be better to understand what is an Interstitial Ad before moving to Interstitial Ad Network. Interstitial Ads also know as the full-screen Ads are ads that cover your screen either on mobile or desktop as soon as you reach a webpage or open an App on your mobile device. These ads are most common in Apps. they are shown mostly between activities or some minutes after interacting with the App. Now that you understand what is an Interstitial Ad, let us define Interstitial Ad Network: These are specific Ad Networks that deal with interstitial ads as part of their Ad inventory. A lot of Ad Networks are beginning to offer advertisers and publishers the opportunity to advertise and monetize with interstitial Ads.
These are some of the most asked questions by newbies in the advertising industry. we understand there more than a hundred questions that needed answers but can’t put all of them here in this list. however, we will be happy to know from you which questions you would want us to answer and add to this list. let us know your suggestions in the comment section below.
Online Ad network can be defined as a digital platform, created with the sole purpose of serving Ads to registered publishers. Those registered publishers are websites and Blog owners willing to earn some revenue from displaying Ads. It’s a simple concept that is aimed at connecting the advertiser to bloggers and website owners willing to show those ads on their web pages. In other words, “Ad Network” facilitate the connection between the advertisers willing to by available Ad spaces (Inventory) from a group of publishers in different geographical locations across various categories (Niche).
1. Defining what is an Ad Network
Since the begging of internet marketing which includes online advertising in the early 90s, Ad Networks use to serve as intermediaries between advertisers and publishers. The technology has advanced today with many functions that allows for more advertising optimization and targeting tools to reach more target audience. However, There are always two important parts or groups on every AD network which are the Advertisers and Publishers. The Advertisers are business or individuals willing to promote their products or services online with the hope of getting more traffic and increasing their sales, on the other hand, Publishers are individuals willing to display Ads from particular Ad network to earn some income through their traffic’s clicks and impressions.
The advertisers are often the businesses or individuals, they pay to the Ad network, create ads and submit those ads for approval by the Ad network admin. once the Ads are approved, they are shared on the publisher’s web pages. The Ads sharing follows a process and guidelines based on the preference of the publisher. While creating Ads from the Ad network inventory, they select specific Ad based on their location, keywords, and niche. To avoid the confusion, these ad networks include only online advertising and not the traditional advertising media that include television, printed media and radio.
The Pricing model mostly used by Ad networks is CPM, CPC or PPC, CPA etc. Ad Network like AdsTargets offers publishers the ability to create different Ad units like Banner Ads, Text Ads, Interstitial Ads, In App-Ads. Additionally, publishers can choose their prefered device to publish their Ads.
2. What is the difference Between Ad Server and Ad Network
This is one of the most asked questions by newbies in the advertising industry. To clear the confusion, we explain in simple terms what is an Ad server and what is an Ad Network below.
What is An Ad server? In simple terms, it is simply an inventory tracking, monitoring and managing advertising technology used by both Advertisers, publishers and Ad Networks to run and give specific accounts on Advertising campaigns. This is further categorized into two distinct types based on their users. The first one is “First-party Ad server which is mostly used by publishers (A publisher Ad server) while the third party ad server is used by advertisers (An advertiser Ad server). Another term that is widely used is the SSP “Supply-side platform”. This is also a similar technology that offers almost all the functions but a bit different in accessing the inventory and delivery method of distributing Ads which makes it different from the previous two. For more on Ad servers, see the video below.
What is an Ad Network? This is another form of advertising technology but unlike ad server, this technology is mostly used for the management of multiple advertising campaigns which store creatives use during transactions of media purchases between the publisher and advertisers. the next complications after understanding Ad servers and Ad Networks, one will ask how do they work which takes us to the next level.
3. How Does an Ad Network Work?
Just to refresh your memory, An Ad Network work by collecting and listing all the avaible inventory from publishers and sell them to potential advertisers willing to pay a premiun price for them in form of PPC, CPA or CPM.
Here’s How an Ad Network operates
An ad network collects a massive number of publishers to deliver the required amount of inventory to the potential advertisers on a premium price or auction basis.
The Advertisers uses the Ad Network campaign management platform to set up Ads which are then automatically distributed to the publisher’s available inventory. Ad Network offers advertisers the flexibility to create multiple campaigns and consolidate the reporting metrics on the campaign performance.
Also, the advertisers set have the possibilities to set up their campaigns based on their desired prices per clicks, impressions and per action. Targeting through demographics, location, keywords, and budgets are all features offered by Ad Networks to advertisers.
Once The Ad networks approve advertisers Ads, Advertisers are allowed to change their banners, Text, and targeting as they please. All these Ad management systems are offered within the Advertiser CPanel (Campaign management panel). No time limits or restrictions are placed as the system are managed online 24/7.
In the early 90s when there were few online advertisers and publishers, Publishers were fine using only one Ad Network to source their available inventory but as internet marketing business became more massive, they figured using multiple ad networks pays better and that’s why today you see most publishers use various ad networks on their inventory spaces which also forced Ad networks to drop their rates. the image below shows the risk associated and rewards when inventory is sold to different ad networks.
4. How Advertisers and Publishers benefit from Ad Networks?
There many ways both advertisers and publishers benefit from Ad Networks. Ad networks serve as a bridge that connects the advertisers and publishers together. This makes marketing and economic sense for all parties but let’s discuss them differently.
Advertisers benefits from Ad networks
When through the primary purpose of Ad Networks is to provide an avenue for publishers to sell their available inventory, they also provide a lot of benefits for Advertisers in the following ways
Scalability: Advertisers have the opportunity to buy many inventories at a time through an Ad network and at the same time, Ad networks provide them the opportunity to monitor and manage their ad campaigns in a centralized system.
Campaign management: It helps advertisers save a lot of time as they are able to manage multiple ads within one system and not moving on many publishers inventory spaces or webpages. This could be a the benefits as they reach more audience within one system.
Measurement and Campaign reach: The Advertisers have the ability to manage their measure their campaign performance and adjust them whenever they are pleased. They can adjust their campaigns either by increasing their budgets or targeting. Ad networks also give advertisers the ability to collect data and retarget individuals that visit their webpages.
Publishers Benefits from Ad Networks
The most beneficial factor for publishers using Ad network is to sell their available inventory which was not easy to be sold directory to advertisers or advertising agencies. Ad networks offer such opportunities and in some cases, they are able to make constant income from selling their inventory to ad networks.
5. What are the Targeting posibilities on Ad Networks?
The targeting functionalities offered by Ad Networks are many with many decision making functions that allow the advertisers to manage their Ad campaigns. the Advertiser Cpanel gives them the opportunity to choose which web traffic is most suitatble for their campaign, when to target specific audience and how to targets them. the following are the targeting criteria offered by Ad Networks RON: Run on all sites in the ad network
ROS: Target specific domains/publishers in the ad network
7. What is the Difference between Ad Networks and SSPs
Even though these two have similar functions, and serve almost the same purpose, there are still some differences that exist between them interms of technology, inventory, clients, Ad optimization functions and targeting.
Inventory: SSPs tend to offer real-time bidding (RTB) and buy inventory that is available from the publishers known to be of “lower quality”. While on the other hand, Ad Networks sell their available ad inventory to brands by giving them access to premium and exclusive publishers.
Technology: SSPs functions allow only Ad delivery, the combination of SSP/DSP (demand-side platform) can be considered the partner of ad networks.
Optimization and Targeting: Ad Networks advertisers are allowed to manually target and optimize their camaign to reach a specific audience. However, the combination of SSP?DSP uses special machine learning technology. SSPs utilizes programmatic technologies to automatically to optimize ads for publishers, Similary, DSPs also optimize Ad campaign for various brands while allowing them to target specific desired audience.
8. How Ad Network evolved
As the digital advertising market evolved and became more competitive, Ad Networks have engaged in a battle to maintain a significant amount of their share market. they constantly offer more appealing functionalities to attract more publishers and advertisers. because of the competition, marketers are constantly searching for oen in all solution. It forces the Ad network increasingly offering the same tools as SSPs which is massively closing the gap between them.
On the other hand, as SSPs also compete for more publishers, they tend to offer functionalities to attract more premium publishers. At the same time, they offer advertisers the opportunity to buy inventory directly which make them similar to Ad networks. SSPs have elvolved a lot as they connect advertisers and publishers (the demand and the supply side). It will be self to say they have evolved towards programmatic direct.
This further closses the gap between Ad networks and SSPs. For instance, ad networks’ gradually transcend premium inventory as they integrate programmatic engines that optimize the procured RTB supply. In addition, they are also connecting their own avaiable supply to specific DSPs in a bid to increase fill rates for their portfolio of publishers.
Advertising has evolved a lot in general since the first banner Advertising was publishers in the ealry 90s. We have experices very high levels of competition among Ad network as they constantly introduce new advertising functionalities. recently, In-App Ads and push notification Ad format have been introduced which has also seen spikes in advertising budgets. the advertising industry will constantly see changes in the near future.
We have tried to explain most of what you need to know about Ad Networks and how they work for the benefit of the advertisers and publishers, however, we will continue to update this post to bring you more latest information about Ad networks. Feel free to share your experience, observations and objections in the comment section below.