4 Benefits of Self-Serve DSPs

a graphic representation of a person using a programmatic platform, to illustrate the 4 Benefits of Self-Serve DSPs

Having access to the right self-serve technology is a huge selling point for brands. There are big benefits of self-serve demand-side platforms (DSP), like the ability to optimize campaigns in-house, and in real-time. 

Marketers want to know that the agency they have partnered with is not outsourcing the digital campaign management, and is making campaign adjustments as needed, as opposed to simply analyzing the results at the end of the campaign. 

Curious about how a self-serve DSP or programmatic platform might benefit you? Let’s dive into what a self-serve DSP is, and the advantages of using one. 

What is a Self-Serve DSP? 

A self-serve demand-side platform (DSP) provides advertisers with a centralized interface for managing their programmatic campaigns. Advertisers can manage their data exchange accounts and multiple ad exchange accounts all in one platform. This means they have full control over the digital ad buying process. 

4 Key Benefits of Self-Serve DSPs

When you choose to use a self-serve programmatic platform for your digital campaigns, you’re solidifying yourself as an expert! Understanding the ins and outs of adtech technology platforms makes you and your agency more valuable to brands, which will benefit customer retention. 

One of the major benefits of self-serve DSPs is that they put you in the driver’s seat, enabling you to better meet the needs of your clients. Although you’ll be responsible for setting up, managing, reporting, and optimizing your campaigns by yourself, there is no need to get overwhelmed. 

If you choose the right programmatic partner, you will see there are a lot of benefits to operating on a self-serve model. Let’s explore 4 benefits of self-serve DSPs.

1. Self-Serve DSPs Provide a User-Friendly Interface

When a company offers self-serve, it typically means they’ve made efforts to make the platform as user friendly as possible. They know that you will be navigating the platform and setting up your campaigns yourself, and they want to make that simple and streamlined, so the user is not overwhelmed. 

That means the platform will be intuitive, easy to use, and you should have easy access to a robust support center that will answer any questions you may run into. When you have a platform like this, it allows you to create and optimize campaigns quickly and effectively.

2. Benefit From Trustworthy Automation

While having a user-friendly interface is very important, it’s not the only requirement you should focus on when choosing a platform. Your DSP partner should have technology that is not only current, but adapting to the evolving programmatic landscape, which means built-in machine learning capabilities. 

Your adtech platform should have a level of automation to make your self-serve experience more seamless. Leveraging a DSP that uses machine learning and artificial intelligence allows you to streamline your workflows, better optimize your campaigns, and ensures you’re driving tangible business results.

3. A Self-Serve Programmatic Platform Provides Complete Control

When you choose a self-serve model you are in the driver’s seat. You will understand exactly when and why any changes to your campaign were made, including how the campaign was set up. This provides better insight to your reporting and makes it easier to replicate your successes! It also allows you to build a list of your specific best practices that you can apply to all your campaigns.

4. Build Your Programmatic Skillset

Leveraging a self-serve DSP allows you to really understand the platform, and the performance of your campaigns. When you take on a self-serve model, you are building skills. These skills will make you a more sophisticated buyer, keeping you at the top of your game. You will have the opportunity to become an expert of the technology, seamlessly navigating the DSP, and turning out your desired campaign results. 

While there are benefits to self-serve, some still find it overwhelming to take on an entirely new platform that plays such an important role in your agency. Adding a new piece of technology to your stack is a big undertaking, and it’s so important to get up and running quickly, while still being able to use the platform to its full capabilities from the get-go. This can be a daunting undertaking—but it doesn’t have to be. 

Take the free programmatic course: StackAdapt Academy.

How to Onboard the Right Programmatic Platform

To reap all the benefits of self-serve DSPs, it’s important to work with the right platform. You’ll want to work with a programmatic platform that offers comprehensive support right from the start. Having support available is critical, but with strategic onboarding, you know you will gain the skills to succeed as soon as you launch that very first campaign. 

1. Cover the Platform Basics

When you first start onboarding your new DSP, you should be given deep insight into how you will plan, setup, and execute your campaigns, as well as all the features available for campaign reporting. These are four key areas that need to be covered so that you have all the tools to manage your campaign from start to finish.

2. Take the Driver’s Seat

After going through onboarding for a self-serve DSP, it’s time to take the reins. Your DSP client success team should encourage you to be in the driver’s seat, providing guidance, but having you click and navigate your way through the platform so you learn by doing. 

3. Learn Best Practices

While knowing how to use the platform is important, tips and tricks for success are always welcome. Your client success team knows the DSP inside and out, and has seen it all. They should share best practices with you–insider information–that sets you up for success.

4. Responsive Client Success Team 

Even though you have chosen a self-serve model, you should not feel alone. If you need help at any time–whether that be locating a feature in the platform, or understanding reporting metrics, and how you can better optimize–you should have a team that you can easily reach, who is responsive, helpful and provides you great insight. 

If your client success team goes above and beyond to offer you more consultation, like help with strategy, knowledge about the latest digital marketing channels, or assistance with compliance regulations, it’s a bonus! You know you’re in capable hands and will excel as a self-serve user.

Get Started With a Self-Serve DSP

Working with a self-serve DSP that offers resources and training from the day you get your login will ensure your success. If your DSP partner has a thorough onboarding process that is effective and efficient, you will be set up to run winning campaigns. When you are supported and trained, self-serve isn’t overwhelming or intimidating, it’s empowering and exciting!

Interested in leveraging a self-serve DSP? Request a demo to learn more about StackAdapt.

Erin Hynes
Erin Hynes

Content Marketing Manager


Erin is a content marketer with experience crafting thought-provoking content that drives awareness and supports customer acquisition. She is also a travel writer and podcaster in the tourism space.