Ad operations are complex and this complexity is inherent to the programmatic ecosystem and ad tech as a whole. In case you’re planning to create your own ad network, you can’t underestimate ad ops role because the way you optimize ads and workflow impacts platform profitability and your revenues as well as revenues of your partners. 

The ad operations team is responsible not only for ad server maintenance. It can be also in charge of digital media distribution, inventory management, ensuring a great user experience, yield management, third party ad software integrations, and online ad campaigns execution. Time to find out what is an ad operation, how ad operations are delivered, and why your stack may need ad ops team.

What is Advertising Operations (Ad Ops)

Ad ops encompass the essential tasks of supporting, managing, maintaining, and facilitating the delivery of online advertising, including involvement with ad exchanges.

It's a proactive approach, ensuring the reliability and success of your ad network. With ad ops in place, team members from diverse departments collaborate seamlessly to guarantee stable and profitable advertising operations and processes within your organization.

People employed in ad operations are directly responsible for revenue generation for your network. The ad ops team consists of various professionals. The tech teams deal with code, ad servers, and all kinds of tech tasks. Business development works with sales and partner relationships.

Account ad ops optimize ads, analyze and configure overall campaign workflow for clients. In other words, ad ops is an ongoing relationship between technical dep, business development, and account ad ops teams that work for the greater good of your business.

Why Does Programmatic Advertising Need the Help of Ad Operations?

While automated ad exchanges, platforms, and ad networks aim to streamline processes and reduce human involvement, there are instances where the system benefits from the expertise of an ad ops specialist with a live human brain. Let's explore a few reasons for this necessity.

Campaign Set-Up and Execution

Professionals involved in ad operations are responsible for the technical implementation and execution of programmatic advertising campaigns. They ensure that the campaigns are correctly set up, targeting parameters are accurate, and creative assets are appropriately integrated.

Ad Quality Assurance

Ad ops teams play a crucial role in maintaining the quality of programmatic ads. They verify that the creative elements meet industry standards, ensuring a positive user experience and compliance with regulations.

Data Management

Programmatic advertising involves vast amounts of data, from user information to campaign performance metrics. Ad operations manage and analyze this data to optimize targeting, delivery, and overall campaign performance.

Troubleshooting and Optimization

Ad ops professionals are adept at troubleshooting issues that may arise during programmatic campaigns. Whether it's addressing technical glitches or optimizing campaign parameters for better results, ad ops ensure smooth operations.

Integration with Ad Exchanges

Professionals involved in ad operations facilitate the connection between advertisers and publishers. They manage the bidding process, ensure accurate targeting, and optimize bid strategies to maximize the effectiveness of programmatic advertising.

Ad Fraud Prevention

Ad operations actively work to identify and prevent ad fraud, employing tools and strategies to minimize the impact of fraudulent activities in programmatic advertising.

Reporting and Analytics

Ad ops generate reports and provide analytics on programmatic ad performance. This data-driven approach helps in evaluating the success of campaigns, understanding audience behavior, and making informed decisions for future optimizations.

Cross-Team Collaboration

Ad operations serve as a bridge between various teams involved in programmatic advertising, including marketing, sales, and technology. This collaboration ensures alignment in strategies and objectives.

Ad ops are instrumental in the success of programmatic advertising by managing technical aspects, ensuring quality, optimizing performance, and facilitating seamless collaboration between stakeholders in the advertising ecosystem.

Digital Ad Operations Aspects - What Do Those Include? 

Digital ad operations are part of the ad ops process that utilizes the system for the delivery and management of digital advertising. It can include various tasks, from traffic optimization to balancing traffic costs and matching supply with demand. The operations department should be maintained by the ad operations team: developers, support team, and account specialists.

At the same time, keeping an in-house team is not something every company in the advertising industry can afford. In case you want to ease ad ops and bypass the challenges of building an advertising platform from scratch, opt for a white-label solution like SmartyAds WLS — it saves essential resources and time for platform building, designing, licensing, and establishing integrations, e.g., OpenRTB. 

Built from the ground up, the platform enables the creation of a self-branded open marketplace that can be launched by the enterprise in less than a month. With this platform, you can increase the standards of media purchasing and generate more money on partners' traffic. The ad operations process, like platform management, is ensured by our team. 

SmartyAds WLS solution will be plugged in as a complex service concept — our technical professionals will install the RTB-connected platform with essential modules and provide you with guides, manuals, and continuing advice regarding usage, optimization, and performance (via video calls). As a result, such technology will significantly simplify your online ad operations. 

In addition to this, you can get a turnkey launch program for your newly installed white-label ad exchange + SSP solution or white-label DSP. Such a program provides you with a dedicated professional who will help you with partner connections, all sorts of negotiations and correct setting adjustments, communication with tech teams, etc., so your platform is ready as soon as possible.

Then, if it turns out that you don't have a free pair of hands to run and develop your platform non-stop, we can offer you a skilled, dedicated ad operations manager based on the outstaffing contract. Such a professional will be locally working from the SmartyAds office, and will indeed be a part of your team. This person will collaborate with the rest of your team and will be in your entire management. Meanwhile, payrolls, taxes, and equipment will be all on SmartyAds. Convenient? For sure.

How to Hire a Good Ad Ops Specialist?

Ad ops professionals play a pivotal role in planning and executing advertising campaigns. From campaign set-up and testing to ensuring delivery, they specialize in optimizing multi-channel advertising across various mediums and digital formats (video, native, mobile advertising, audio, CTV) pre- and post-launch.

Why is it so hard to find a good ad tech specialist?

Finding a proficient ad tech specialist proves challenging due to the inherent complexity and niche specialization within the field. The scarcity of formal training programs outside ad tech companies, which often recruit and train personnel internally, further compounds this difficulty.

How do we do it at SmartyAds?

Prior to investing time and resources in recruitment and training, it's crucial to possess specialized knowledge and a deep understanding of individuals. At SmartyAds, we've discovered that prioritizing qualities like intelligence, persistence, and curiosity in ad tech and programmatic training yields rapid returns.

While finding an all-in-one specialist is rare, it's not a problem. Our experience indicates that, even in the absence of prior experience, candidates can thrive if they exhibit:

  1. Strong analytical thinking;
  2. Effective business communication skills;
  3. Flexibility, adaptability to change, and a team-oriented approach.

When it comes to training, discipline and a well-structured plan are imperative. SmartyAds, for instance, offers a comprehensive training program specifically designed for those entering the field for the first time. These programs empower individuals to acquire essential skills even without prior ad tech experience.

Anastasia-Nikita Bansal, director of Enterprise Solutions at SmartyAds.

After our team trains and assesses an employee, they receive all essential equipment and seamlessly integrate into the client's core team — albeit working remotely from our office.

This approach relieves the client from the burdens of searching for, evaluating, training, and managing staff, along with handling taxes and vacation pay (handled by us). In contrast to outsourcing, the client gains a customized specialist meeting their unique requirements, working closely with them, and adhering to their standards and business processes.

How to Make Ad Network Perform Better with Digital Ad Ops

Advertising operations with SmartyAds WLS can significantly ease advertising campaign execution, elevate the media-trading outcomes, and release the platform owner from potential technical issues. In order to maximize revenues on your advertising platform, it is essential that your ad ops team have all the right tools in place.  

  • Monitor server workload

Keeping the ad servers stable is a typical ad operation, but what is an ad server? An ad server is the core of the ad network that keeps workflow smooth: it organizes creative delivery and rendering, ensures delivery speed and creative sequencing, and supports auctions, reporting, and many other ad ops.

Ensuring a well-managed ad server is paramount for maintaining a robust ad network workflow and achieving seamless creative rendering. The central focus of any ad network lies in the continuous and efficient operation of its servers.

Specifically, a sophisticated system is in place in the SmartyAds White Label SSP + ad exchange. This system actively monitors the incoming queries per second (QPS) and, should it exceed predefined limits, promptly notifies the system administrator. This proactive notification serves as an early warning, allowing administrators to prevent server overload.

Furthermore, it empowers them to make timely adjustments to the QPS plan, ensuring optimal performance and preventing potential disruptions in the ad network's functionality. The intricate monitoring and alert system within SmartyAds WLS exemplifies its commitment to maintaining the stability and reliability of the ad-serving infrastructure.

  • Configure integrations

Setting up new partners and third-party software integrations is an essential part of ad operations. There's no denying that the OpenRTB 3.0 protocol enables quick and easy partner connection; however, certain SSP partners inside your network may still require VAST tags standard integration.

In such a case, having a technical professional by your side who could configure custom partner integration along with general endpoints for RTB partners is important. Using SmartyAds WLS functionality, admins can do it quickly using links to GET requests. When the connection is established, the system will translate requests from SSPs into OpenRTB format and send them to DSPs. Then, the responses will be converted back into VAST and sent to SSPs.  

  • Authorize legitimate sellers and resellers

Ad fraud prevention is the first procedure that you need to have included in your ad operations — it helps you to avoid advertising money loss. Adx.txt, app-ads.txt, ads.cert, sellers.json are those standards of IAB that were released in order to protect digital inventory from fraudsters.

For instance, when your ad network has available sellers.json files like SmartyAds WLS, ad managers can publish it for SSPs. The file will list all legitimate sellers and resellers of ad inventory from each SSP. The DSPs will access the file and easily discover who the requests really belong to. This will contribute to effective and safe ad inventory management on your platform. 

  • Configure your traffic

Quality is an essential characteristic of traffic that makes DSP partners want to obtain it from your platform; that's why real-time traffic scanning should be an essential part of your ad operations. With TMT, Botmat, GeoEdge, and the rest of the pre- and post-bid scanners on SmartyAds WLS, ad operations like scanning get much easier.

There are plenty of ways your ad operations team or advertising professionals should navigate and shape up the traffic. SmartyAds WLS has an in-built traffic throttling system that analyzes DSPs' bid responses to monitor what kind of traffic each DSP bids on. The more DSPs bid on certain GEOs, the more relevant traffic will be attributed to DSPs. This way, online ad campaigns on DSP will be supplied with the right traffic. This, in turn, will contribute to better yield management.  

  • Configure custom filters

Setting up the right filters is also a typical and essential ad operation. For successful and smooth online advertising operations, it is important to know which digital ad formats and ad campaigns generate the highest profits. By revising statistics in the SmartyAds WLS platform, admins can investigate the revenues brought by formats during the period (rich media banner ads, native ads, video ads, or others).

See how much money ad formats brought today and compare them to yesterday's performance utilizing convenient stats in the dashboard. This feature will greatly simplify such important ad operations as analytics.

To wrap it up

Ad ops advertising enables ad network owners to overcome possible pitfalls of solution functioning. In the same way, these professionals can make the workflow on the platform easy and seamless.

Instead of learning all technical aspects of platform operation and workflow management, businesses can set up a fully serviced ad tech platform and focus on strategic business planning.

In its turn, SmartyAds WLS is an easy-to-use ad tech solution that can make your ad operations faster and more efficient. The system is transparent so that you can see the performance per format, ad campaign, or traffic type. 

Our specialists can provide you with comprehensive ad operations service — full dev support, technical support during integrations, and third-party data-provider integrations for a non-standard partner connection. We will design and deploy your ad-serving architecture according to the needs and objectives that you have in mind. If you need ad tech development on demand, don't forget to let us know!

Ease your ad ops with SmartyAds WLS and earn more from partners' traffic! 


What is ad ops?

Ad ops, short for ad operations, involves the strategic management, execution, and optimization of online advertising campaigns. Ad ops professionals oversee technical aspects, quality assurance, and data analytics to ensure effective ad delivery. They play a pivotal role in troubleshooting, optimizing, and maintaining the smooth functioning of advertising operations in the digital landscape.


How do ad operations teams influence ad campaigns?

Ad ops teams influence ad campaigns by overseeing technical set-up, ensuring quality assurance, and optimizing ad campaign performance. They manage data analytics to refine targeting, troubleshoot issues, and prevent ad fraud. Ad ops professionals facilitate seamless collaboration between teams, ensuring the smooth execution and success of advertising campaigns in the dynamic digital advertising industry.


Why do I need ad ops in my team?

The ad ops team is essential for you to streamline the technical aspects of online advertising, ensuring effective ad campaign execution. Ad ops professionals optimize ad performance, troubleshoot issues, and manage data analytics for targeted delivery. Their expertise enhances the overall efficiency of your advertising efforts, maximizing results and maintaining a seamless advertising operation.