Special ad units
Require ad units to be explicitly targeted
Let's say that you have an ad unit that is expensive, sensitive, or strategic, and you don’t want traffickers to accidentally target them. For example, you may want to prevent a run-of-network remnant line item from appearing on your homepage. How do you make sure the ad unit is specially treated? You can mark it as special.
If you designate an ad unit as special, a trafficker must explicitly target it, even if it’s hierarchically below the inventory that’s been targeted. No line item will serve to a special ad unit unless that ad unit has been explicitly targeted.
If you mark an ad unit that has line items delivering to it as special, any line items that aren’t explicitly targeting it will stop delivering to it. If you exclude an ad unit, everything within and beneath it will be excluded regardless of whether it's special.
Special ad units are marked with an asterisk (*) in DFP, and you can designate an ad unit as 'special' on the ad unit's settings page (learn more).
You can add special ad units to placements for reporting purposes only. If you add a special ad unit to one or more placements, line items targeted to that placement will not serve to the special ad unit unless it's explicitly targeted. Additionally, any child ad units of the special add unit need to be explicitly targeted as well, even if the child ad units aren't special ad units.
When you create child ad units under a special parent ad unit, the children aren't marked as special by default. If you want one or more of the children to be special, you must mark them as such. For example, let's assume the following hierarchy, where special ad units are marked with an asterisk (*):
Sports* > Football > Positions > Quarterback*
Quarterback ad units were specifically marked as special, but
Positions were not.
What this means is:
- If you configure the line item to be run-of-network,
Sportsand its children won't be eligible to serve, since
Sportsis a special ad unit.
- If you target
Positionsare targeted but
- If you target
Positionsis targeted but
Special ad units in Ad Exchange
DoubleClick Ad Exchange does not recognize DFP special ad units, and will instead treat them as regular ad units when targeting using rules, blocking, or deals.
If you're using Ad Exchange line items for dynamic allocation in DFP, special ad units will only be available to the Ad Exchange if you explicitly target them.