District M & Sharethrough Post-Merger: Achieving Directness at Scale

Tuesday, March 22nd 2021

We are happy to announce that District M & Sharethrough have concluded their merger, previously announced on February 9th. As of today, we become a top 5 independent omnichannel ad exchange, and look ahead to even more product innovation and technology growth with our new and improved omnichannel offer, inclusive of video, display, and native formats.

As the ad tech industry grows exponentially with consumers and advertisers seeking better experiences through CTV and seamless ads, we wanted to highlight the key advantages of the merger. These differentiators lie in our core values, coupled with our direct connections to all major DSPs and tier 1 publishers, as well as our promise to provide better ads and better placements across all devices.

Achieving Directness at Scale

Optimizing towards direct supply paths has become a best practice in programmatic advertising, increasing transparency and strengthening relationships throughout the ecosystem. Due to several industry transparency initiatives such as ads.txt and sellers.json, buyers can now make data-driven decisions on supply path optimization. A “clean” supply path involves solving supply-side problems that have emerged within ad exchanges and networks over the past few years.  This creates an opportunity for savvy buyers to improve ad performance on publisher sites and minimize financial intermediaries – ultimately optimizing campaign results for advertisers.

Directness at Scale : District M & Sharethrough Merger

Post-Merger Increase in Our Publisher-Direct Supply

DistrictM and Sharethrough had a direct-centric business model and the combination resulted in surprisingly little duplication. District M & Sharethrough currently have access to 78% of the entire publisher-direct web internet, positioning our ad exchange amongst a short list of tier 1 sell-side platforms.

“There is no doubt that District M & Sharethrough compliment each other perfectly. We were able to determine there is less than 20% site duplication between our exchanges, which means we’ve seen a massive increase in the scale of our direct, high-quality supply“ said Luc Marsolais, SVP Marketplace.

Coverage Of All Publisher-Direct Web Supply Sharethrough District M

To understand the key benefits of having direct connections on the supply side, we must understand the key differences between reseller and direct relationships. On the reseller side, the publisher has authorized another company (whether ad network or simply multiple hops of exchanges) to sell inventory on its behalf. With direct connections, the publisher works directly with the ad tech vendor to sell its inventory. Direct integrations with publishers allow SSPs to break free from the constraints of reselling ads and deliver high-quality ad experiences with minimum financial intermediary expense. In the graph below, Jounce Media analyzed the percentage of direct supply paths found in District M & Sharethrough post-merger and were able to place it as a tier 1 exchange for most directness and scale.

Tier 1 Exchange With Most Directness & Scale Sharethrough District M

Designing for Supply-Path Optimization

Supply-Path Optimization is the act of being intentional about the path through which you buy ads, not just the end destination of the ad. SPO, at its core, simplifies the supply chain between advertisers and publishers by cutting out unnecessary intermediaries to get the most direct & transparent path, benefiting both sides of the ecosystem.  While cost is often at the top of the concerns list, there are many possible benefits to SPO.

In a market where many sellers are offering similar placements, buyers often struggle to know which sellers to partner with, which can be costly. On the other hand, a buyer who is familiar with the industry will know which route to take via which seller, and, as a result, get the best ROI. In a nutshell, SPO is the process of reducing the amount of intermediaries, keeping only those who add value.

Supply-Path Optimization: How Does it Work?

Supply Path Optimization

Control over ad spend

With SPO, buyers can increase the impact of their ad spend. Usually, fewer intermediaries mean a more effective ability to win the impressions the advertiser wants at the right price.

Brand safety

Unfortunately, fraud is still a major issue across many websites on the open web. SSPs sometimes accept inventory from unauthorized resellers, which is one of the main causes of online advertising fraud. SPO can identify which inventory source is authorized, removing the fraudulent sources.

Benefits of Supply-Path Optimization for Publishers:

Enhance value & earnings

SPO allows publisher inventory to gain competitive demand with fewer financial steps between them and the buyer. As a result, publishers with unique inventory have better chances of increasing worth, loyalty and monetization.

Direct connections to all major DSPs

A demand-side platform (DSP) enables advertisers to create and purchase display, video and native ads from a marketplace where publishers list their inventory. The average advertiser uses 3 DSPs to run their advertising campaigns. These platforms are highly beneficial, as they allow advertisers to truly focus their campaigns with precise targeting methodologies.

Together, District M & Sharethrough have direct connections to over 30 of the major DSPs, which unlocks several benefits for both advertisers and publishers. For one, advertisers can easily select the exchange as a supply source on any major DSP to run display, video or native campaigns. Additionally, historical performance data is used to optimize and enhance ad placements, allowing advertisers to reach their campaign goals. District M & Sharethrough’s direct DSP connections enable publishers to have higher demand, resulting in an increase in monetization of their inventory.

Sharethrough District M DSP Partners

District M & Sharethrough are focused on bringing partners a more nuanced, sustainable and human-centric approach to digital advertising. Although there is still a lot of work to be done, they celebrate these milestones together, as a unified team, from Montreal to San Francisco. For more information on what’s to come, contact us today.

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