What is Self-Service AdTech?: The Innovative Technology for Marketers

automation-switch-Self-service AdTech

Are you tired of spending too much on paid ads? You may want to try self-service AdTech.

Self-service AdTech is a branch of MarTech – it eliminates the need for a sales representative when buying and managing advertisements on an ad platform. With a self-service platform, advertisers can directly purchase ad inventory that suits their specific needs instead of working with a sales rep or a publisher.

Some of the most used paid advertisement platforms use the self-service model. Google Ads, Twitter Ads, and Facebook Ads are all self-service advertising platforms.

Take a closer look at self-service AdTech and its importance for your advertising efforts.

What Is Self-Service AdTech?

Self-service advertising technology includes platforms that allow advertisers to create and manage an ad campaign without interacting with a human. With a self-service platform, you can select the criteria for the campaign, such as:

  • Target keyword
  • Region
  • Goals
  • Budget
  • Timeframe

The only thing that you cannot select is the exact placement of your ads. The platform has its own supply of ad networks for displaying your ads.

For example, when you use Facebook Ads, your ads are displayed on Facebook’s ad network. Google Ads are displayed on Google’s display network, which includes Google Search and various websites.

You can continue to monitor the performance of your ads after launching your campaign. Self-service platforms give you analytics and allow you to adjust or pause your campaign at any time.

What Is the Difference Between Self-Service Advertising Platforms and DSPs?

Google Ads and social media advertising platforms are often labeled demand-side (DSPs). However, DSPs typically offer access to multiple ad networks or publishers. You may even select from existing advertising sources that you already work with.

Self-service advertising platforms are used to display ads on the chosen platform instead of a selection of ad sources.

Both options include automation. After selecting the criteria for your campaign, it essentially runs on autopilot. Advertising platforms and DSPs use artificial intelligence (AI) to deliver your ads to the right audience.

Check out this video on the differences between self-service AdTech and traditional DSP.

Discover the Most Beneficial Self-Service AdTech

Self-service AdTech can include advertising platforms and DSPs. The following list includes popular examples of self-service AdTech products:

  • Google Ads
  • Facebook Ads
  • Twitter Ads
  • Amazon Self-Service DSP
  • Google Display & Video 360
  • SmartyAds

Each option also includes access to different segments of the population. Use the following information to explore the pros and cons of the most used self-service DSPs and advertising platforms.

Why Use Google Ads?

According to CNBC, Google earns about 80% of its revenue from selling ads. Google Ads is the company’s most used advertising platform. It includes pay-per-click (PPC) ads that appear at the top of search results on Google Search.

Google Ads includes a variety of options to help optimize your ad campaigns. The user dashboard allows you to easily control your costs, measure your success, and target your ads to people with specific interests.

If you are new to paid advertising, Google Ads is a good place to start. The internet has a wealth of information on launching a successful Google PPC ad campaign.

Why Use Facebook Ads?

Image showing Facebook Ads' logo, a type of self-service AdTech.

Facebook remains one of the most popular social media sites, making it the perfect place to reach potential customers. According to statistics published by Hootsuite, Facebook gives you access to an audience of 2.14 billion users.

Facebook Ads Manager is a self-service advertising platform that allows you to display ads on Facebook and Instagram. As with Google Ads, you can manage everything from a user dashboard. However, instead of paying per click, you pay per impression. Facebook Ads offers an affordable way to boost brand awareness.

Why Use Twitter Ads?

Twitter Ads is another affordable option for increasing brand awareness. It uses a pay-per-click (PPC) model and allows you to select your goals, such as website conversions or Twitter engagement.

Twitter also offers effective targeting. You can use keyword targeting to deliver your ads to Twitter users who are more likely to show interest in your products or services.

Why Use Amazon Self-Service DSP?

The previous self-service advertising platforms are relatively easy to use and suitable for businesses of all sizes. Amazon DSP is a self-service DSP intended for larger organizations.

Until 2018, Amazon DSP was only available as a managed service. You can now use Amazon’s ad network without working with an ad management team.

Ads purchased through Amazon are displayed on websites, apps, and devices owned by Amazon and sites owned and operated by Amazon partners. You may find that you reach a different audience with Amazon DSP compared to search engine ads and social media ads.

Why Use Google Display & Video 360?

Google DoubleClick included a variety of advertising tools, including a digital marketing manager, productivity tools, and the DoubleClick Bid Manager. Google recently rebranded the bid manager as “Display & Video 360.”

Google Display & Video 360 offers greater flexibility compared to Google Ads. You can pay per impression instead of paying per click and choose from ad space across a wide range of advertising exchanges. However, you can also expect higher prices compared to Google Ads.

Why Use SmartyAds?

SmartyAds is not as large as Google or Amazon, but it offers access to a long list of ad publisher partners, including Pubmatic and Cheetah Mobile. The company offers a streamlined, automated process to help deliver a better return on investment for your ad spending.

Compared to Google and Amazon DSPs, SmartyAds is likely to provide a more cost-effective option. Yet, you should still consider experimenting with more than one platform to find the one that works best for you.


Self-service AdTech is any advertising technology that allows you to buy and manage ad space without human interaction. You can choose your budget, ad copy, and target audience through a web-based interface and then track the results in real time.

Search engine ads and social media ads are the most used self-service advertising platforms. These options are often cost-effective but only display ads on a single network. With a self-service demand-side platform (DSP), you can choose from a variety of publishers and advertising sources for displaying your ads.

If you want to reach more potential customers, consider using a combination of self-service AdTech. Use different ad platforms and DSPs to reach different audiences and test the benefits of each for yourself.

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