A DSP or Demand Side Platform is a system that allows buyers of digital advertising inventory to manage multiple ad exchange and data exchange accounts through a single interface.
In theory, the value of a mobile demand side platform (DSP) lies in its transparency, although this is not always the case. Mobile DSPs allow you to buy mobile ad inventory, across a range of publishers, through a single platform. You can see the market rate for every impression you buy, control which exchanges you want to buy across and how much you want to bid. Not only that, mobile DSPs use data from publishers, advertisers, ad tech companies and third-parties to make media buying more efficient and match ads to audiences, in real-time.
In 2016 world online ad spend reached $72 billion, which is 22% up from the previous year and, for the first time, the mobile ad accounted more than a half, 51% of the total digital ad spend to be precise.
Mobile DSPs are designed to tackle the many challenges of mobile advertising, including targeting and the need for a positive user experience. Recent advances in technology mean that mobile DSPs can now track models, operating systems, screen size, location and more. The past year has seen a huge shift towards mobile programmatic buying, as advertisers begin to reap the rewards of sophisticated targeting and measurement capabilities.
Not sure where to start? When choosing a mobile DSP there are some key questions to consider: how many inventory sources does it access? Does that include app and mobile web inventory? A larger reach gives you the best chance of finding the most effective impressions. Which third-party data integrations does it offer? What targeting criteria is available? The success of programmatic campaigns depend largely on the strength of data available to target audiences. Finally, how sophisticated are its algorithms? The most effective automatic optimization will win the most bids at the most competitive prices.
To help you to make an informative decision on choosing the right DSP for mobile ad campaign, we’ve gone through variety of DSP and picked the ones that are either mobile focused or at least provide mobile DSP alongside with a desktop one. So here is the top mobile DSPs for 2017 and their best features.
Note: the companies on the list we’ve complied below are not in any priority order
DataXu is a marketing software company founded in 2009 in Boston, US. One of the tools it provides advertisers is a mobile DSP. It features an easy-to-use UI, a suite of various targeting tactics, location-based strategies, as well as a dedicated support team and training for marketing agencies to launch successful mobile ad campaigns.
Highlights: audience-based buying, sophisticated optimization, real-time reporting, high security level
Tapad is a cross-device marketing solutions providing company that is focused on supplying digital marketing solutions that work in unison across multiple devices. It was found in New York, US in 2010. Among features that set it apart from competition are the cross-device DSP to maximize video ads reach between smartphone, tablet and desktop, as well as providing solutions to boost both online and offline performance.
Highlights: measuring TV ads effectiveness, cross-device DSP, online & offline ad solutions
Rocket Fuel is a predictive marketing platform launched in 2008 in Redwood, US. The Rocket Fuel DSP was built to optimize ad campaigns performance via using AI algorithms, raise brand awareness, and lift across marketing objectives, channels and devices.
Highlights: high level of ad campaigns automation, planning, monitoring, analytics and audience extension
myDSP is the self-serve mobile media buying platform from global technology company, Matomy (LSE:MTMY; TASE:MTMY.TA). myDSP combines the leading service, supply, and data-driven technology of Mobfox and Matomy’s internal DSPs, together with the combination of features for smarter programmatic advertising and optimization.
MediaMath a digital marketing technology company founded in New York in 2007. Back in 2007 it was the first company that introduced DSP solution in the market. MediaMath omnichannel DSP allows marketers to manage ad campaigns across multiple channels – mobile, display, social, video, audio and native.
Highlights: omnichannel solution, pioneer on the DSP market
Bucksense is the programmatic platform for digital marketers, launched in 2012 in Madrid, Spain. The company’s DSP solution operates across five channels – Display, Native, Video, Mobile and Desktop. With Bucksense, marketers ad campaigns data is collected and analyzed every hour, as well as a bidding strategy is being automatically updated.
Highlights: access to more than 18 ad exchanges, retargeting, hyper targeting, multiple device and format optimization
Tagline: Programatic built to optimize your conversion path
Having integrated Bidstalk’s technology, AppLift’s mobile media buying platform DataLift360 now provides access to over 30 programmatic mobile display, video and native SSPs and exchanges, and other supply sources through its self-service platform. Datalift’s technology utilises first and third-party data to optimize media buys, while real-time analytics let you measure and optimize campaign performance.
Highlights: Programmatic buying and data integration.
Fiksu is a mobile marketing technology company, founded in 2008. The Boston-based firm, with offices in London, New York and San Francisco, that connects brands, agencies and app advertisers to targeted mobile audiences.
Fiksu DSP consists of four companies under the common umbrella – Fiksu DSP, Meed, Attriboost and Fiksu Media Group, all 4 are highly connected that allows to take full advantage of the 4.1 billion mobile device profiles database, including up to 90% all iOS and Android devices combined ever sold in US. This database powers 250+ lookalike profiles dataset to provide high precision targeting.
Highlights: Sophisticated targeting options, programmatic buying, and premium inventory.
Appnext is a leading monetization and app distribution platform, founded in 2012. Its self-serve mobile DSP operates on a cost-per-install (CPI) bidding basis, allowing advertisers to reach the right customers and buy directly from the top performing publishers.
Appnext lets you run local and global campaigns in over 230 countries. The advanced reporting tools give you a clear view of your bids, placements and revenue.
Highlights: Self-serve platform, CPI model, and global reach.
Taptica is a mobile advertising technology company, founded in 2012. The company’s mobile demand-side platform provides data-driven solutions for mobile video and social advertising.
Taptica’s technology offers a Data Management Platform (DMP) and demand-side platform (DSP), using big data for advanced audience targeting. And, advertisers can maximise engagement and revenue through mobile re-targeting on a CPA basis. Taptica works with over 450 advertisers including Amazon, Disney and Expedia to name just a few.
Highlights: supports all mobile ad formats, 100% transparent advertising, personalized service
Centro is a media management software company, founded in 2001 in Chicago, US. Centro offers a DSP for both advertisers and publishers, as a solution or a white label software. In 2016 the company got the IAB Sales Excellence Award.
Highlights: supports all existing channels (video, native, display and so on), premium publishers inventory, retargeting, hyper-local targeting
Liftoff is a mobile app marketing and re-targeting platform, founded in 2012. Along with the focus on CPA-optimized app install ads, real-time bidding via DSP platform across all major RTB exchanges and mobile ad networks allows advertisers to bid on individual ad impressions.
Jampp is an app marketing and re-engagement platform, founded in 2011. Jampp works on a cost per install (CPI) basis, optimising your campaigns for volume and quality conversion.
The platform DSP solution aggregates over 150 ad networks, RTB exchanges and publishers and uses big data to optimize your campaigns in real-time. Jampp’s technology combines targeting metrics including device, operating system, language, and engagement; and measures success by every conversion, sale or engagement achieved post-install.
Highlights: CPA-optimized, fraud protection, live insights
StrikeAd Sizmek is a programmatic mobile advertising platform founded in 2010. Acquired by Sizmek in 2015, StrikeAd’s dedicated mobile DSP was integrated into the Sizmek MDX Platform, enabling advertisers to accelerate growth through programmatic and premium publisher relationships.
StrikeAd offers both a fully-managed or self-service solution for running campaigns and its Fusion platform allows media planning and buying agencies to set up private marketplace strategies alongside open exchange buys for optimal campaign performance.
Highlights: Programmatic buying & creative, advanced targeting, private marketplaces (PMP), it covers mobile, video and display channels.
PocketMath is the world’s fastest self-serve mobile advertising platform for buying programmatic real-time bidding inventory, launched in 2011. Headquartered in Austin, US, PocketMath has offices around the world including a burgeoning presence in China and Japan.
PocketMath’s programmatic buying system bids on impressions based on targeting parameters. The company’s mobile DSP offers extensive targeting options including location, device, cherry-pick apps, wifi/carrier, and time of day scheduling.
Highlights: Media buying transparency, programmatic buying, leading mobile ad formats support, advanced targeting and global reach.
Featured in an Index: n/a
Tagline: The World’s Fastest Self-Serve Mobile Advertising Platform.
Smaato is a global real-time advertising platform for mobile publishers and app developers. Founded in 2005, Smaato runs the world’s largest independent mobile ad exchange.
The company’s platform allows advertisers to plug in to Smaato’s RTB ad exchange, providing access to quality inventory from over 90,000 publishers worldwide. Real-time bidding functionality improves the efficiency of your ad campaigns, and you can adjust budgets and advertising media based on your targeting criteria.
Highlights: Real-time bidding, targeting precision, sophisticated reporting and global reach.
Featured in an Index: n/a
Tagline: The Leading Global Real-Time Advertising Platform for Mobile Publishers & App Developers
The mobusi group is a technology media company formed in 2012 with a mobile-first and performance mindset. mobusi is able to meet advertisers’ goals through a wide range of services and their in-house DSP platform is just one of them. Paired up with the best RTB networks, the mobusi DSP is based on modular algorithms which allow a series of conditions to be established to adapt bids in every step of any campaign. The company now has offices in Mexico City and Los Angeles as well as a team in India.
Kimia (from Arabic Al-Kimia – the alleged ability to turn common metals into gold) is a mobile CPA performance network, founded by Karel de Beule in Madrid, Spain in 2006. It provides a self-service demand-side platform (DSP) for media buyers and CPM advertisers, it is meant for marketers to improve their ROI across both mobile and desktop platforms.
Highlights: no 3rd party server required, niche verticals, Geo, carrier and device targeting, sophisticated fraud detection system
Avazu Mobile DSP is a leading advertising platform founded in 2009, by Yi Shi. Avazu Mobile DSP is a self-serve mobile advertising platform, connected to over 20 ad exchanges, for global reach.
The platform uses real-time bidding and real-time reporting to maximise revenues for advertisers and offers a white label mobile DSP solution for agencies. There are also plenty of targeting options including location, device, network speed, and in-app versus web.
Highlights: Programmatic buying, real-time reporting and 100% self-service.
Yeahmobi is a performance-based mobile advertising network and platform, founded in 2009 and focussed on user acquisition and monetisation for mobile apps globally.
Yeahmobi’s demand-side platform (DSP) helps advertisers control and optimise their campaigns, and drive the best ad placement value through programmatic buying. Integrated with top ad exchanges including Smaato, Doubleclick Ad Exchange and Mopub; the DSP utilises real-time bidding to target the best demographic for your product.
Highlights: Programmatic buying, behavioural tracking, and flexible pricing model.
Kwanko Mobile is a demand-side platform by Kwanko, the leading European cross-device advertising network. It provides mobile advertisers with an access to the key ad networks, it’s capable to deliver more than 5 billion impressions monthly.
Highlights: Real-time Reports, statistics and ROI analytics (e-CPC, CTR, e-CPM, CVR, CPA)
Featured in an Index: n/a
Tagline: Advertisers, Boost The Performance Of Your Mobile Campaigns
Trademob is a leading international platform for programmatic mobile app advertising, founded in 2010. The Berlin-based company specialises in user acquisition, retention, and re-targeting using real-time bidding technology and its own DSP.
Trademob’s platform is connected to hundreds of SSPs, ad networks, RTB exchanges, and media partners with access to over 1 billion users worldwide. The demand-side platform facilitates re-targeting through real-time bidding to reach inactive users at a more cost-effective rate.
Highlights: Re-targeting through real-time bidding.
Featured in an Index: n/a
Tagline: Your platform for mobile app advertising.
Bidsopt is a leading mobile DSP, founded in 2014 and headquartered in India. The company’s programmatic buying platform for mobile enables advertisers to reach the right audience using advanced targeting and performance optimization. The self-serve platform gives advertisers control of their ad campaigns, with 24/7 technical support available. Bidsopt DSP provides plenty of targeting options, including geography, time of day, device, wifi/carrier, blacklisting & whitelisting of apps or sites from any exchanges.
Highlights: Programmatic buying, advanced targeting, self-serve platform with technical support.
AdGoji is an ad tech agency, founded in 2012 and based in Amsterdam. Specialising in mobile in-app advertising optimisation, AdGoji’s demand-side Platform (DSP) uses real-time bidding to programmatically buy in-app ad space and deliver engaged customers.
AdGoji’s DSP gives you access to high quality inventory from thousands of apps in over 100 countries, and optimisation options include clicks (CTR), installs (CPI), acquisitions (CPA), and retargeting.
Highlights: Mobile in-app advertising and programmatic buying.
Go2Mobi is a leading mobile advertising platform with access to mobile ad inventory on over 200,000 apps and mobile websites. Founded by Tom Desaulniers and Gavin Aitken, in 2011, Go2Mobi’s DMP boasts advanced audience targeting technology, using mobile-originated data to create and define consumer personas.
Go2Mobi’s programmatic mobile DSP provides advertisers with targeting, reporting and optimisation controls for the best ad performance. Ad Placement is 100% transparent, third-party data is integrated, and features include GPS, carrier/wifi, and device targeting and frequency capping.
Highlights: Programmatic buying, advanced targeting and total transparency.
The Gimbal’s all-in-one mobile DSP AdCast™ enables advertisers to choose from premium inventory sources, buy ads in real-time, and fully integrate with the company’s other products to target, optimize and track data. The platform also boasts a data processing speed five times faster than the average mobile DSP.
Highlights: location based marketing, geofencing, beacons
Featured in an Index: n/a
Tagline: We’re here to stop the industry from eating itself.
Splicky is a mobile demand side platform, founded in 2012, which offers a simple way to buy ad impressions from global mobile inventory using real-time bidding (RTB) technology.
Splicky’s DSP takes into account multiple targeting parameters to only bid on impressions which match your requirements. The self-service platform offers real-time analytics, performance transparency, and advanced targeting options including location, carrier/wifi, audience, app name and device.
Highlights: Programmatic buying, self-service platform and advanced targeting.
Adelphic is a mobile and cross-device demand side platform (DSP) with a global reach. Founded in 2011, by Jennifer Lum and Changfeng Wang, Adelphic helps maximise mobile advertising investment through programmatic advertising.
The company’s patented technology recognises the consumer behind the device and assigns an ‘a-tag’ identifier, attaching dozens of targeting factors to each ad opportunity in real-time. The self-service platform includes a full set of campaign management tools; enabling users to plan, create, optimise and analyse their campaigns.
Highlights: Advanced targeting, first and third-party data.
Featured in an Index: n/a
Tagline: Your audience moves in real time. So we do.
Ezmob is a full-service mobile advertising company that champions in both technical expertise and mobile strategy, creative development and media buying. Ezmob’s demand side platform (DSP) provides advertisers access to the network of direct publishers and RTB exchanges to scale up traffic quickly. The platform supplies advertisers with a wide range of creative ad units including banners, rotating JS tags and pops as well as custom in-house ad units.
Appreciate is a Smart mobile DSP focused on an in-app advertising, founded in Israel in 2013. It provides self-served transparent DSP solution to media buyers to target, run and optimize in-app mobile campaigns in the real-time bidding environment. The demand-side platform provides access to thousands of curated and premium mobile apps to run ad campaigns in.
Highlights: simple setup and planning, transparent tracking and reporting, multiple targeting capabilities, rich ad format portfolio
Smarty Ads is a full-stack programmatic company, provides complex RTB advertising solutions. SmartyAds DSP combines programmatic buying, campaign management and optimization to run campaigns across multiple channels – Display, Video, Native and Mobile.
Highlights: centralized management system, global reach, transparent pricing, real-time analytics and reporting.
Featured in an Index: n/a
Tagline: Fuel Your Marketing Success with SmartyAds DSP.
Targetoo is an Amsterdam based programmatic mobile advertising company, founded in 2012. Its self-serve mobile DSP solution serves advertisers from more than 120 countries, it provides access to 34 adexchanges, sophisticated targeting features and effective fraud control.
Highlights: custom databases support, 10,000 geo fences support, iBeacon tech support, audio ad format support, sophisticated forecasting
Adsaxis is a mobile DSP launched in 2015 in US to offer online advertisers a solution to buy mobile ads programatically. Amongst the platform features are advanced targeting capabilities, conversion tracking and real time reporting. Creative ad formats supported include; JPEG & HTML banners, Video and Native ads. It provides businesses a full control to run their own mobile ad campaigns via the online campaign dashboard.
Highlights: Self Serve Campaign Dashboard, Global Reach in 100+ Countries, Integrated with 15+ Ad Exchanges, Downloadable UDID files, Targeting by Country, Category, Geolocation, OS, OS version, Device, Carrier, WiFi, Time of Day, Ad Exchange, IP or Device ID.
Targetoo is a self-service programmatic mobile ad buying platform with a creativity twist launched in 2013. The platform cutters to both developers and ad agencies and it commits to providing the best tech support, with training programs, creative services and open APIs.
Highlights: provides a demo, creative services, global reach, transparency
AdTiming is a mobile marketing platform that provides data driven mobile marketing services. To ensure mobile ads great performance the platform provides data optimization via app, audience and creative related tags, ads frequency moderation, network monitoring, conversion windows management.
Highlights: 300,000+ unstructured tags, 200+ Countries and Regions, 10 Billion+ daily traffic coverage, 250 Million+ daily data points update
Featured in an Index: n/a
Tagline: Data Driven Mobile Marketing
AdTiming, Data Driven Mobile Marketing.
Every demand side platform is different and it’s not unusual for brands and marketers to use several to meet their needs. We hope this guide helps make your choices clearer. Think there’s a mobile DSP we’ve missed? Find out how to get listed.
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