Everyone knows that programmatic advertising is a game changer, but not many people can tell you exactly what it is or how it works. It’s hard to get on board with something that you don’t completely understand, and in an industry filled with acronyms, most people don’t even know where to start. In order to alleviate that problem, Yashi produced some fun videos that delve into the realm of Ad Tech, complete with standard definitions as well as explanations so simple a child could understand them. (You’ll see what I mean.) If you’re a newcomer to digital marketing, or if you’re just trying to spruce up your knowledge, these videos will teach you everything you need to know about programmatic advertising.

Audience Buying

At the root of programmatic is audience buying. This concept is the main differentiator between digital advertising and its traditional counterparts. With mediums like television, ad space is bought in bulk ahead of time. With TV, audience targeting is based on the assumed viewership demographic for that time slot, given the content of the program. Digital advertising, however, relies on audience buying - the ability to target distinct users based on criteria like demographics, behavior, interests, and location. On top of that, digital advertising provides advertisers with the ability to view performance metrics and optimize their strategies in real-time.


Programmatic advertising is a big phrase with a simple function. Essentially, programmatic is the digitalization of ad buying and serving processes. Programmatic replaces manual insertion orders with technology, and facilitates the process of buying, planning, executing, and optimizing ad campaigns in real-time. It also affords you the ability to target specific users and measure performance.

Real-Time Bidding (RTB)

Real-Time Bidding is the process that occurs when ad space is purchased. Each time a user clicks onto a new webpage that has ad inventory (the available space for an advertisement), there is an online auction. This is where targeting criteria comes in. If the person who is about to view that webpage fits the demographic, behavioral, or geographic data that the advertiser seeks, they will bid on that ad opportunity in an auction with hundreds of other companies. If they win the bid, they get to serve their ad to that person. This entire process happens in under 100 milliseconds. Crazy, huh?

Supply Side Platforms (SSP) vs. Demand Side Platforms (DSP)

There are two main players in the digital advertising realm: advertisers and publishers. Advertisers are the people who have the ads to serve, and publishers are the people who have the space on their site to host the ad - the ad inventory. Demand Side Platforms (DSPs) exist to help advertisers buy inventory based on their individual targeting criteria. DSPs like Yashi allow advertisers to find the best possible user to see their ad, and provide complete transparency in their reporting data to optimize campaign performance.

On the other side of the spectrum, Supply Side Platforms (SSPs) help publishers monetize their websites by hosting ads. SSPs allow publishers to connect to ad exchanges to sell their inventory. The goal here is to find the best possible buyer for that inventory, and to achieve high fill rates.  


Retargeting is the process of showing ads to people who have previously visited your site. By placing a retargeting pixel (a bit of code) on the global footer of your website, you can cookie users and then show your ads to them as they travel around the web. It’s the best way to non-invasively remind warm leads of your products and services.