Differences between Programmatic Advertising (DSP) and Google Ads

Many advertisers are unfamiliar with the term programmatic advertising: demand-side platform (DSP). There are many questions about what a DSP is and how DSPs differ from Google Ads. Most demand-side platforms are similar to Google’s advertising platform, Google Ads. But DSPs offer a more vendor-neutral real-time bidding (RTB) ecosystem, while Google Ads allows you to run your ad campaigns only on your own network.

In a nutshell, Google Ads was built primarily around search, keyword, and text advertising. Display advertising became available after Google acquired DoubleClick and expanded the Google Display Network. On the other hand, programmatic advertising platforms (DSPs) are based on display advertising, but can also serve other types of ads. Let’s take a look at the similarities, differences, and advantages of DSPs and Google Ads. 

For a comprehensive dive into DSPs, uncovering their powerful advantages, and gaining expert insights and strategies, explore the innovative resources available at TeqBlaze. Discover more at https://teqblaze.com/white-label-dsp

What are DSPs and how are they different from Google Ads?

Demand Side Platform (DSP) is a technology system that allows buyers of digital advertising inventory to manage their accounts across multiple ad exchanges. Therefore, this system can be defined as a platform that brings together multiple traffic resources, buyers, and sellers into a single interface. However, the platform is focused on “demand” as it intends to have buyers buy traffic from multiple traffic resources; i.e., create demand.

DSPs are similar to Google Ads in that they are also campaign management tools. However they differ in traffic sources and campaign types. You can use a DSP to buy traffic from integrated sources such as AppNexus, Mopub, Pubmatic, AOL, etc. You can also buy inventory from Google if that DSP integrates it as a traffic source. Whereas Google Ads only allows you to use Google inventory. When it comes to campaign types, with a DSP, you can serve additional ad types such as native, video, pop, and push.

Google introduced Google AdWords (now Google Ads), which dominated the paid search market in the mid-2000s. Subsequently, banner or display advertising also became available internally. Ads could be served by location, day and time, demographics, etc. Today, paid search and banner advertising through Google Ads, is a quick and obvious solution to advertise products and bring services to market. 

With technological improvements, programmatic advertising companies created breakthrough demand-side platforms. With that, advertisers gained the ability to target based on very specific targeting options, including industries, businesses, jobs, and even individuals.  

Programmatic advertising platforms (DSPs) are the way to market products and services to specific devices and individuals using available data such as IP and cookie databases. For example, if an individual works for Boeing and is in charge of procurement, they leave a large online footprint that may include business profiles, browsing history, cookies, downloaded content, submitted forms, online logs, etc. Third-party data vendors can collect permitted intelligence and offer it to DSP networks through DMP. Apart from that, some DSPs allow you to use first and second-party data. This way, the network delivers ads only to a very specific audience related to the aviation industry, for our example, that would be Boeing executives. Thanks to data-driven targeting options,

Different benefits of DSPs and Google Ads

For some industries, Google Ads is the easiest way to reach the market and, depending on the user’s budget, receive thousands or millions of ad impressions within days. To serve ads within a specific network, businesses can choose individual sites, sites grouped by specific topic, audiences by interest, and even “in-market” indications. This is ideal for B2C advertisers trying to reach mass or local markets, B2B companies offering well-known products or services, or for branding purposes.

With demand-side platforms, advertisers can select target audiences not only by location or what people search or browse but also by industry, company name, job title, job function, seniority, and even decision-making power. Like Google, DSP networks can deliver “in-market” groups or “end of funnel” traffic based on people’s online behavior and can identify those who are ready to buy. Unlike Google, those “in-market” activities can be attributed not only to individual users but to entire organizations looking for products and services. With the ability to target organizations and decision-makers, DSPs can be integrated with account-based marketing (ABM) strategies and used to reach specific lists of companies and influence the active sales process.

Using DSP for account-based marketing 

Account-based marketing, or ABM, is a strategy marketers use to target and interact with a specific set of accounts. With the ability to send ads to specific devices based on the company and the professional it belongs to, DSPs find the right audience for their ads and can integrate with other ABM activities. 

DSPs or programmatic networks, can be used for various ABM strategies:

  • Delivering announcements to executives, decision-makers, and end users in specific organizations.
  • Influencing prospects who are in active sales processes.
  • Using ads as sales enablement
  • Remarketing/retargeting to web visitors and contacts in the database
  • Finding similar industries, companies, and professionals who are more likely to buy
  • Delivering tailored messages crafted in the form of a web ad or promoted social post

Here is an example of how to integrate a DSP with an ABM strategy. Many companies use marketing automation platforms to identify the accounts that are most likely to purchase their product or service. With DSPs, it is possible to integrate ad campaigns with marketing automation to show ads to the same companies and individuals that received a newsletter or phone call from a sales professional. That way, the potential buyer has not only spoken to sales but also seen web banners and online ads while browsing the Internet or scrolling through their social media accounts. 


DSPs and Google Ads are like two different flavors in the world of digital advertising. Google Ads is your go-to for reaching a wide audience effortlessly through search and display networks, making it perfect for broad campaigns targeting consumers and businesses alike. Meanwhile, DSPs operate on a more sophisticated level, diving deep into real-time bidding across various ad exchanges. This means advertisers can pinpoint their audience with surgical precision, whether it’s specific industries, job titles, or even individual accounts. It’s like choosing between casting a wide net with Google Ads or using a finely tuned laser with DSPs for targeted campaigns that hit the mark every time.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *