Apple is building a demand-side platform if recent job listings are to be believed, as this report suggests. There has been a lukewarm response from the industry to this news especially given the fact that Apple’s previous stint at releasing an ad-platform, iAD, did not succeed. To me, it was only a matter of time for Apple to venture into the DSP space and there is a better chance for iDSP to succeed than ever before.
What is a DSP and how does it work?
A demand-side platform (DSP) aggregates advertising inventory sources and works in conjunction with a server-side platform (SSP), letting brands advertise through automation.
Apple story: Apple can leverage omnichannel inventory from its browser, App-Store, Apple TV, mobile, and gaming platforms, to optimize the most relevant and best possible ad-slots, which will help them to work directly with brands through their DSP. Through automation, marketers can set up and manage campaigns, easily enabling them to spend more.
How does DMP interact with DSP?
A data management platform (DMP) is a storehouse to manage, control, define and push audience segments into destinations like DSPs. A DMP and DSP work in tandem to provide the best possible ad experience to the most relevant audience based on their media consumption journey.
Apple Story: Apple has a huge customer base, with a wealth of first-party data within its walled garden. Apple has been an advocate of user privacy and has been dismantling the ways to target these customers using its platform. This began with the introduction of intelligent tracking prevention through the disabling of third-party cookies and app tracking transparency tools through dedicated opt-outs. With one of the largest audiences to build upon, establishing a DSP allows Apple to provide a compelling advertising experience for their customers within their walled garden without compromising their customer privacy stance. Additionally, with Google’s shifting timeline for third-party cookie deprecation pushing the industry toward cookieless solutions like contextual targeting (which are yet to be tested), there is a very high likelihood that buyers will shift their budgets toward Apple’s DSP to leverage Apple’s first-party audience data.
Why now? What is in it for Apple to build a DSP?
DSPs allow media and advertising consolidations to avoid running in silos, enabling brands to optimize campaigns across multiple channels like display and video. Brands, consumers, and publishers face challenges of fraud and fatigue because there is no frequency management across channels and platforms. Optimization is key and getting rid of the waste is imperative. With a single point of access, DSPs allow efficiency in time, energy, and spend with effective reach and frequency. Also, since it is one automated system, measurement is easier with a single source of truth, which enables outcome-based KPIs. In the industry we can see that a lot of companies are getting together to provide this holistic automation across supply and demand sides to optimize spend and improve customer experience.
Apple Story: Apple has a full-pass end-to-end story. Google, Meta, and other walled gardens don’t have the same hold on the industry that they had a decade ago, especially on consumers. With advertising and media spend increasing YoY, Apple has to follow suit of companies like Amazon, Google, and Microsoft to build automated platforms that better serve brands and their customers. With its technology and data, Apple has the capability to create a niche DSP that potentially targets consumers across the TV, mobile, and gaming, positioning them to be the frontrunner in this space. Only time will tell if this is a winning strategy.
Founded in 2005, Amobee is an advertising platform that understands how people consume content. Our goal is to optimize outcomes for advertisers and media companies, while providing a better consumer experience. Through our platform, we help customers further their audience development, optimize their cross channel performance across all TV, connected TV, and digital media, and drive new customer growth through detailed analytics and reporting. Amobee is a wholly owned subsidiary of Tremor International, a collection of brands built to unite creativity, data and technology across the open internet.
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