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What is DV360, and Why Opt For It Over Other DSP Platforms?

Demand-side platforms (DSPs) are gradually taking over conventional advertising platforms, such as Google Ads.

Google Display and Video 360 is one of the most advanced programmatic advertising platforms on the market today. Extensive audience lists allow for in-depth targeting compared to classic keyword targeting in Google Ads.

According to Bounteous, DV360 reaches over 80 ad exchange networks and displays ads on over 90% of the Internet. An extensive network of partner companies that exchange data with Google, such as BlueKai, LiveRamp, and Eyeota, help to make your ads more personalized and target the required audiences.

However, with big opportunities comes a great demand for analyzing gathered marketing performance metrics.

In this article, we’ll discuss the upsides and drawbacks of Google Display and Video 360, review the most effective marketing strategies, and identify the best ways to analyze the acquired metrics. Let’s roll!

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What is Google Display and Video 360?

Google Display and Video 360 is an all-around tool for marketing teams. Marketers use it to manage programmatic campaigns across display, video, OTT, TV, audio, and other channels in a single location.

The platform is based on five different modules:

  • Campaigns
  • Audiences
  • Creatives
  • Inventory
  • Insights
Display & Video 360 components
Display and Video 360 components

Due to the synergy of these modules, you can keep track of your marketing investments, manage media campaigns, test out new creatives in a matter of minutes, and deliver a first-class ad experience to your prospects.

Google Ads vs. DV360

Marketers who use Google Ads may wonder what the big deal is about Display and Video 360. There are multiple answers to this question.


Google Analytics 360 and Search Ads 360 can pass data through to DV360. That means you can target audiences more precisely using the behavioral data gathered from your website and PPC campaigns.

Unlike Google Ads, DV360 provides more detailed audience customization. Instead of basic targeting based on interests, demographic insights, and keywords, marketers get access to in-market audience targeting, affinity audience targeting, geography targeting, and more.


Compared to Google Ads, DV360 has much greater potential for creating engaging ads. The platform allows you to create interactive display ads of different sizes and styles.

Google Ads allows ads to be created featuring a single image, company logo, and text with a maximum of 140 characters. The platform adjusts your creatives automatically depending on the size, placement, and device that displays your ad.

Display and Video 360 offers more media formats and templates through its Rich Media Gallery.

Rich media gallery
DV360 types of creatives

At the same time, Campaign Manager analytics allow for faster and more precise A/B testing of creatives and provide rich reporting opportunities with a long list of metrics.

🎯 Learn how to set up a precise attribution in Campaign Manager 360 🎯


Audience targeting is one of the main differences when comparing Google Ads to DV360. With Google Ads, marketers can use a handful of different methods, ranging from keyword targeting to analytics remarketing lists (collected by linking your Google Analytics and Ads accounts).

DV360, in its turn, relies heavily on Floodlight pixels.

Floodlight is the conversion tracking system for Google Marketing Platform. It tracks activity on your site and collects data about conversions. It uses a cookie to track repeat visits from a specific browser.

Marketers can use mixed insights from Floodlight pixels and audience lists to track conversions more precisely and perform first-party targeting.

Audience lists in DV360
DV360 audience lists

“Similar audiences” is one of the most notable features of Display and Video 360. With its help, you can reach out to prospects who share the same interests as your existing customers. Here are the two main requirements for creating a lookalike audience in DV360:

  • The first-party audience list should have active users within the past 30 days
  • The first-party audience list should have no fewer than 500 users

👉Learn how to combine first-party and audience data in Google Ads Data Hub👈

The Trade Desk vs. DV360

The Trade Desk is a giant of the programmatic advertising market. As well as DV360, The Trade Desk allows marketers to advertise their brand or product to specific audiences based on demographics, interests, and many other parameters. 

One of the largest differences between these two platforms is the minimum monthly ad spend. Both companies don’t disclose their pricing, but according to the information from marketing forums, the difference is huge. DV360 users claim that the minimum advertising spend is $50,000 per month. At the same time, The Trade Desk requires marketers to spend $100,000 per month when advertising in Canada and $1,000,000 per month if displaying ads in the US. 

As for the technical side, one of DV360’s main advantages is that Google’s first-party data is available for free. Moving audiences from Google Analytics is a lot easier if you’re using DV360 because Google allows the integration of these two platforms with just a few clicks. The Trade Desk doesn’t offer native integration with Google Analytics, so you’ll have to search for workarounds to create audiences based on Google Analytics data.

Another benefit of DV360 is its compatibility with Google Ads Data Hub. At its core, Google Ads Data Hub is a data clean room that allows marketers to aggregate data from YouTube, DV360, Google Analytics, and Campaign Manager. With its help, you can merge Google’s audience data and your first-party data in a privacy-friendly way and get analysis-ready, user-level insights.

Wrapping Up

It’s evident that DV360 has many benefits over other programmatic advertising platforms. Display and Video 360 provides a wide variety of benefits, ranging from its creatives workflow to audience reach. 

The second part of our guide covers the best strategies to launch successful DV360 campaigns. In it, our featured expert, Jean-Benoît Nonone, a programmatic advertising and digital marketing expert, shared his experience with line item optimization.

Google Display & Video 360: Campaign and Bid Optimization Tips

If you want to get more value out of DV360 and maintain a comprehensive overview of your marketing efforts, Improvado can help you. Improvado is a marketing data automation platform that helps you streamline marketing data from tens of sources and centralize them in one place. Schedule a consultation with our experts to learn how Improvado can boost your marketing analytics.

Learn how a revenue ETL platform can help you exceed your marketing goals and save time your analysts' time
Ali Flynn
VP of Customer Relationship
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