About publisher provided signals (Beta)

This article explores publisher provided signals (Beta) under the following headings:

Publisher provided signals (PPS) let publishers scale their first-party audience and contextual data to improve programmatic monetization. This helps publishers make the most of their first-party data for ads personalization in programmatic transactions and helps buyers understand the inventory they're bidding into. 

Beta publishers can use publisher provided signals with existing first-party audiences or detailed contextual signals available, such as key-values.

Note: Publishers are expected to map their first-party data to the standardized industry segments that Google Ad Manager supports. Some sensitive categories aren't supported. When turning on this feature, publishers need to accept the policy related to the origin of data included as publisher provided signals.

Some key benefits for publishers include:

  • A way to use unique first-party data directly in the auction
  • Ability to make first-party audience and attributes and content information more discoverable to buyers by mapping standardized audience attributes and content segments with industry taxonomies that can be directly communicated in bid requests
  • Enhanced privacy for ads personalization
  • Sharing first-party audience attributes and contextual data with buyers without data leakage concerns
  • Valuable for inventory across apps and OTT/CTV environments where limited contextual signals are available
  • PPS can be sent to Google demand (including open auction, private auction, preferred deals, programmatic guaranteed), Authrorized Buyers, Open Bidding and SDK Bidding.
Note: To view or edit PPS, you must have the "View publisher provided signals" or "Edit publisher provided signals" permissions added to your role.

Turn on publisher provided signals for your network

  1. Sign in to Google Ad Manager.

  2. Click Admin, then Global settings.

  3. In the "Ad preference settings", turn on Publisher provided signals (audience and content).

  4. Click Confirm to accept the terms and conditions of turning on this feature.

By turning on PPS, you are turning on both audience and content.

How signals are passed

The taxonomy segment IDs are passed in eligible bid requests to Google demand, and to eligible Authorized Buyers, Open Bidding and SDK Bidding partners when configured in demand channel settings. Publishers can send PPS in two ways:

  1. Map audiences, custom key-values, or CMS key-values to standardized industry segments that Google Ad Manager supports. 
  2. Send signals at the time of the ad request to standardized industry segments that Google Ad Manager supports.

Map key-values and audience segments to taxonomies

You can map your first-party data already coming from the properties you own to standardized contextual and audience segmentation taxonomies. 

Note: If you're already passing key-values and audience segment data, you don't need to pass new data. You only need to map it.

You can send multiple categories to buyers to allow complex targeting expressions.

Example

[Make] + [Sports enthusiast] + [Automotive enthusiast] + [Aged 20-25]

These categories of applicable entities are shared with buyers, subject to privacy constraints.

Taxonomies supported

Google Ad Manager currently supports the following taxonomies:

  • IAB Audience Taxonomy version 1.1 provides the industry with a common nomenclature for audience segment names and improves comparability of data across different providers. Download IAB Audience Taxonomy.

  • IAB Content Taxonomy version 2.2 provides the industry with a common nomenclature for contextual segment names. It categorizes page content without revealing user information. Download IAB Content Taxonomy.

Note: Google Publisher Tag (GPT) API googletag.config.PublisherProvidedSignalsConfig only supports unique IDs and doesn't support extension values at this time.

Manage taxonomy settings in Ad Manager

  1. Sign in to Google Ad Manager.

  2. Click Inventory, then Publisher provided signals.

  3. Choose the taxonomy you want to set up.

  4. On the Settings tab, publishers may choose to opt-in to "First party scoped user profiles" if Google Demand can use PPS data to build user profiles scoped to your network for uses such as interest-based ads and remarketing. Your PPS data is never used in a cross-network user profile.

Manage category mapping

  1. Sign in to Google Ad Manager.

  2. Go to Inventory, then Publisher provided signals.

  3. Click Select on either "IAB Audience Taxonomy", "IAB Content Taxonomy", or "Additional video and audio metadata".

  4. In "Category mapping", click New category mapping, or click a category name to edit an existing category.

  5. For a new mapping, select the audience segments, key-values, or CMS metadata to map.

    1. The ad request has to satisfy at least one of the specified mapped audience segments, key-values, or CMS metadata. You can contact your account manager if mapping CMS metadata is not turned on for your network.

    2. Key-value pairs and audience segments are combined using the logical "OR" operator. You can search with auto-complete for either name or ID.

  6. Click Save.

Note: You can manage multiple category mappings at once by uploading a .csv (comma-separated values) file of signals to Ad Manager.

Send publisher provided signals at time of ad request

  1. Users visit the publisher's website, mobile app, or connected TV app.
  2. Publishers produce first-party signals that buyers may find valuable to reach their advertising client's goals.

    Examples

    • Audience segments (like, interest and in-market) are gathered based on user activity on publisher properties. For instance, web traversal history, forms, and purchase history
    • Content signals are valuable when content is not discoverable. For instance, mobile app, video, and web content behind a login
  3. The publisher standardizes content and audience signals into an applicable PPS supported taxonomy.
  4. The publisher sends an ad request to Ad Manager, with content and audience signals sent as taxonomy category IDs.

    The IDs need to be set as part of tag configuration.

    For detailed instructions on setting up the ad tag with PPS, reference the following:

  5. Ad Manager sends these signals to programmatic bidders.
  6. Advertisers can target as normal.

Configure buyer eligibility for publisher provided signals

PPS can be sent on all ad requests, subject to privacy constraints, to Google demand; Authorized Buyers; Open Bidding; and SDK Bidding demand partners across your web, app and video inventory.

Controls to select the demand channels and bidders you wish to share PPS with is in the Demand channel settings tab in Ad Manager. Note that any default settings apply to all bidders within a demand channel, but you can make per-bidder exceptions within a demand channel for individual bidders using override groups. 

Make sure you configure sharing settings for any existing override groups by clicking the Override groups tab.

  1. Sign in to Google Ad Manager.

  2. Click Delivery, then Demand channel settings.

  3. Click Default settings.

  4. Go to "Publisher data sharing", then "Publisher provided signals: IAB Audience Taxonomy" or "Publisher provided signals: IAB Content Taxonomy".

  5. Select eligible buyers, such as Google demand, Authorized Buyers, Open Bidding or SDK Bidding.

  6. Click Save.

Publishers should be aware of the following targeting and publisher controls options available to buyers.

Targeting

  • PPS audience categories can only be passed on requests that allow for ads personalization.
  • Contextual PPS can be passed on all ad requests.

Google Ads, Display & Video 360

  • When opted-in, Google programmatic bidders (Display & Video 360 and Google Ads) can produce user profiles based on publisher provided audience signals to create interest-based advertising user profiles. 
  • PPS aren't used to develop cross-publisher user profiles. If a publisher chooses to pass PPS, they're only scoped to the publisher that provided them. This means user profiles produced using PPS aren't joined between publishers, or added to a profile produced using Google user identifiers.

Video and audio

Google Ad Manager currently supports the following video and audio content signals:

developer documentation These signals are sent in the ppsj VAST ad tag parameter and have the values listed in the developer documentation.
  • Genre and Audience: Pass the genre associated with your video & audio content.  The supported values are defined in the IAB Content Taxonomy.

  • Content Rating: Pass the content rating associated with the video & audio content. Use the Content Rating table to determine which value to pass.

  • Audio Feed Type: Pass values associated with the different types of audio content. The supported values, aligned with IAB, are Music, Radio, and Podcast.

  • Production Quality: Pass values associated with the content quality. The supported values, aligned with IAB, are Professionally Produced, Prosumer, and User Generated

  • Content Delivery: Pass values associated with the delivery of video or audio content. The supported values, aligned with IAB, are Streaming, Progressive, and Download.

Content Rating

There has been limited unified industry taxonomies used across regions, markets, and formats for content rating. You can use this generic standard to map from the different standards that publishers and industry bodies may use.

The intention of this signal is to be able to appropriately rate content to strike balance across parents and guardians, developers and publishers, advertisers and ad networks, and regulators.

Use the guidelines provided in this table when sending the content rating directly on the ad request, and when managing category mappings in the "Publisher provided signals" section of Google Ad Manager.

 

Content
Rating value
Description Examples Common mappings from other rating standards

G

Content suitable for general audiences.

Anything from kid-relevant content (for example, a children's television program) to content that is irrelevant but still appropriate for kids (for example, automobile commercials).

MPAA-G, TV-Y, TV-Y7, TV-G, ESRB-E

PG

Content suitable for most audiences with parental guidance.

Cartoonish violence, and toy weapons (for example, toy guns).

MPAA-PG, TV-PG, ESRB-E10+

Teen

Content suitable for teen and older audiences.

Scary content, crude/gross content, food and non-alcoholic beverage, cosmetics, medical treatments, sensitive social topics, social networks, battle games, realistic non-gory violence, and non-sexualized bare skin.

MPAA-PG13, TV-14, ESRB-T

Mature

Content suitable only for mature audiences.

Intense violence, blood and gore, adult content, strong language, and significant appearance of adult themes (for example, substances or gambling).

MPAA-R, MPAA-NC17, TV-MA, ESRB-M, ESRB-A

 

Providing accurate information regarding your inventory and the content ratings associated with the inventory is the responsibility of the publisher. See the Dishonest Declaration clause of the Ad Manager publisher policy.

Intentional misrepresentation of these signals may result in action taken against the account. This includes actions such as intentionally incorrectly mapping values from well-known brand safety rating standards to the incorrect corresponding content rating value listed above (for instance, if your content is rated MPAA-R, you should only pass "Mature" as the content rating signal).

Report on publisher provided signals

Publishers are able to report on directly matched IAB taxonomy categories displayed in a flat hierarchical format for PPS.
Reporting data for key-values and PPS values are not expected to align because of intentional privacy-preserving constraints.
  • Publisher provided signals (all levels)(Beta) Publisher provided signals allow Ad Manager publishers to annotate key-values and audience lists with IAB taxonomy categories. “All levels” reporting is on the leaf node displaying the hierarchy in reporting in a flat manner.
    Reports "(None)" if publisher provided signals aren’t available.
  • Publisher provided signals (data provider) (Beta)
    Reports the entity that provided the signal definition for the publisher. This can be the publisher itself or a third-party, such as BlueKai.
  • Publisher provided signals (delivered) (Beta)
    Reports on publisher provided signals delivered to the winning programmatic bidder.
    Reports "(None)" if publisher provided signals aren’t available.
  • Publisher provided signals (top level) (Beta)
    Publisher provided signals allow Ad Manager publishers to annotate key-values and audience lists with IAB taxonomy categories. “Top level” reports only on the root parent level with leaf nodes deduped per ad request. It is still possible for multiple top levels to exist in the same ad request.
    Reports "(None)" if publisher provided signals aren’t available.

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