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Feb 27

Managed or self-serve: Programmatic can work for you

Programmatic advertising offers many options to marketers, advertisers, and their digital campaigns. For example, advertisers are able to pick who exactly they want to place their digital advertisement in front of when they want to place it, and even where it gets placed. Additionally, depending on the platform an advertiser uses, they can decide how they want to run their programmatic advertising. Two of the options for running a digital advertising campaign on a programmatic platform are self-serve or managed service.



Running a self-serve digital advertising campaign allows advertisers to have direct access to that campaign. Advertisers are able to view and work on a campaign(s), in their office, at the click of a mouse, making changes such as:

  • change out creative
  • optimize site lists
  • adjust the budget as needed


The advertiser gets to run everything from start to finish Š—– building audiences, uploading creative, adding targeting, etc. Optimizations can be made as soon as they are needed. One major benefit of running a self-serve digital advertising campaign on a programmatic platform is the ability to have it within that advertiserŠ—’s own company (Š—“in-houseŠ—). Whoever is running the campaign works for the company, most likely works inside the building, and has direct access to others involved throughout the life of a campaign. The cost of running digital advertising campaigns self-serve is also more cost efficient in most cases, with zero to low minimum fees.


Managed Service

Running a campaign on a managed service platform puts the campaign responsibilities in the hands of that platformŠ—’s media strategists. The media strategists are the ones who upload everything to the platform for the campaign, make optimizations throughout, and send reporting back to the advertiser. While the advertiser is able to view how their campaign is doing, the media strategist is the one who runs and optimizes everything. This can be seen as a more appealing option to those advertisers who donŠ—’t believe they have enough time or resources to run a programmatic campaign themselves. One thing to consider with a managed service is there are usually minimum fees with every company that offers this service. These minimums can range from a media spend of $15,000 a month and up.


As an advertiser, whether managed service or self-serve, programmatic should be the (major) key in running digital advertising campaigns. Deciding which way to run programmatic advertising is entirely up to that advertiser and their agency. Whatever the needs may be, programmatic is a great way to run any type of digital advertising campaign and can work for any advertiser!

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