Approve third-party segments

Only available in Google Ad Manager 360

Audience Solutions is a Google Ad Manager 360 feature might not be enabled in your network.

If your advertisers know that a portion of your audience is interested in subjects other than the contents of your website, you may want to use third-party segments to target their ads to a more specific audience. Third-party segments are lists of cookies matching the demographics of your visitors that you purchase from a third-party data provider.

Let's say you have a sports news website. One of your advertisers knows that a portion of your audience is likely to be in the market to buy a new sedan. You can buy an audience segment containing members about to buy a new car from a third party and target line items to that segment.

To do so, you'll first have to work with your Google Marketing Platform representative and the third-party to get access to the segments. Once you've done that, you can approve segments offered by that provider.

Get access to third-party providers

  1. If you work with one of the data providers integrated with Ad Manager, talk to your Google Marketing Platform representative to get approval to work with them in Audience Solutions.
  2. Once you've been granted approval, provide your Audience Solutions link ID and network currency type to the data provider with whom you're working. They will process and push the segments you've purchased into Ad Manager. To find your audience link ID, click Admin and then Global settings and then Network settings.

    Note that your audience link ID is not the same as your network code.

  3. Segments offered by the third-party will be pushed automatically into Ad Manager where you can review them and then and approve or reject them.
  4. After you approve a third-party segment, you can target line items to it, run forecasts, and report on it. After you reject a third-party segment, you have to work with the third party to re-license the segment in order to approve it again.

If a data provider you work with is not integrated with Ad Manager, then work with the provider to learn how best to use their audience segments in Ad Manager.

Approve third-party segments

Global licenses are automatically approved. You only need to approve direct licenses.
  1. Click Inventory and then Audience and then Segment approvals.
    • The “License type” column indicates whether the segment has a Direct license (terms negotiated between your network and the data provider) or a Global license (terms negotiated between Google and the data provider on behalf of all publishers).
      If you have disabled Global licenses, the "License type" column is not displayed.
    • If a segment has both types of licenses, it will be listed twice, once with each license type. You cannot use the globally-licensed segment until the direct licensed version is rejected or expires.
    • You have the option of creating a direct license of a segment that has a global license. If you do so, the direct license will override the global license.
    • The "Data cost" (CPM) is the amount you'll pay the data provider (via Google) for the third-party segment. You'll be charged the full amount of this cost by Google for all impressions attributed to targeting based on this segment.
    • To see segments by a particular provider, use the "Filter by provider" list.
  2. Select the box next to the segments you want to activate.
  3. Click Approve at the top of the list.

You'll be able to target third-party segments immediately after approving them. As with first-party segments, you can optionally associate them with custom key-values, and set other attributes such as number of hits and recency of relevant page views.

Approve changes to segment prices

The process of approving price changes to segments depends on whether you have a global license or a direct license for the segment.

Direct license: When a third party changes the price of an approved segment that you have a direct license to use, you have 30 days to re-approve the segment at the new price. In the meantime, the segment remains active at the price that you originally approved. As soon as you re-approve a segment, the new price will take effect. The new price is used only for new impressions; it's not applied to any impressions that were delivered before you approved the new price.

Globally licensed segment: When a third party changes the price of an approved segment with a global license, it takes 30 days for the new price to take effect.

You can re-approve direct third-party segments the same way you initially approve segments. As soon as you re-approve a segment, the new price will take effect. The new price is used only for new impressions; it's not applied to any impressions that were delivered before you approved the new price.

If you don't re-approve the segment, it will expire 30 days after the third party changed the price. At that time, line items will no longer be able to target the segment. Running line items could be affected. Line items in “Delivering” status continue to be in “Delivering” status, even if the line item can’t deliver due to the inactive segment.

Inactive segments and inaccurate forecasts

Third-party audience segments (including globally licensed segments) can become inactive for many reasons. The most common explanation is that the data provider (the owner of the segment data) has revoked the license that allowed you to use the segment.

Additionally, third-party segments contain users from across many websites or apps, not just your own. In some cases, users listed as active in a third-party segment can't always be guaranteed to be active. If there are high number of these kinds of users in your third-party audience segment, forecasting may not be accurate.

If segments become inactive, or if they seemingly contain active users but produced inaccurate forecasts, reach out directly to the third-party provider for details. Google doesn't have insights into these third-party audience segments. 

You may considered alternative third-party providers who have similar segments. Find Ad Manager Certified External Vendors.

Forecasting data is still available for the inactive segment. If the third party re-pushes the segment, and you reapprove the segment to run, any line items using that segment can continue to run.

Deactivate third-party segments

You can deactivate direct third-party audience segments after they have been approved, go to the "Segment approvals" screen, apply the "Approval status" is "Approved" filter, select the approved segment and click Reject.

You can’t deactivate individual globally licensed segments. To stop using a global segment, you need to remove it from the targeting criteria of line items.

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