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Over the past few weeks, we’ve covered first party publisher data, first party advertiser data and second party data, but there is still yet another key type of data –  third party data.

What is third party data?

Third party data is any information collected by an entity that does not have a direct relationship with the user the data is being collected on. Often times, third party data is generated on a variety of websites and platforms and is then aggregated together by a third party data provider such as a DMP. By aggregating data from a plethora of disparate websites, DMPs are able to create comprehensive audience profiles. These profiles contain information on users’ web interactions and behaviors, which are then used to categorize users into particular segments, such as dog lovers or sports fans. Data providers then sell this aggregated, anonymized data to advertisers to facilitate targeted ad buys, allowing advertisers to target and tailor ads to effectively engage those particular audiences.  The data may also be sold to publishers that either don’t have their own first party data or to bolster their own first party data with complementary audience information.

What are the benefits?

Third party data provides a depth and breadth of information that can’t be matched by an individual entity. While first party data is usually considered the most valuable since it is free and highly accurate, it simply can’t match the range and scale of third party data. Additionally, these third party data providers distill the data down to targetable audience segments, removing analysis that the advertiser may have needed to perform otherwise.  

Now that we’ve covered the different parties involved in the data collection process and different types of data, we’re ready to get more granular. Next week, we’ll delve into the probabilistic and deterministic methods of audience identification and the benefits of each.


Read previous posts from our audience series:


Insights from:

Lexie Pike, Product Marketing



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