7 Best Data Management Platforms (DMPs) in 2023

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    Vahe Arabian

    Founder and Editor in Chief of State of Digital Publishing. My vision is to provide digital publishing and media professionals a platform to collaborate and promote their efforts, my passion is to uncover talent and… Read more

    Edited by Andrew Kemp
    Andrew Kemp

    Andrew joined the State of Digital Publishing team in 2021, bringing with him more than a decade and a half of editorial experience in B2B publishing. His career has spanned the technology, natural resources, financ…Read more

    Table Tool Summary



    Adobe Audience Manager














    Oracle BlueKai

    Oracle BlueKai


    The Trade Desk

    The Trade Desk

    It’s not enough for digital publishers to sign up to an ad network and call it day. Maximizing ad revenue requires a top down view and a willingness to explore software options.

    In the era of programmatic advertising, data management platforms (DMPs) are an essential tool for digital publishers, serving as data ecosystems that help shape digital ad campaigns.

    Essentially, the more first party data a publisher feeds a DMP, the more audience insight on that website an advertiser has when developing their marketing budgets 

    With marketing budgets on the rise once more after 2021’s dip, now’s the time for publishers to consider either signing up to their first DMP or possibly switching providers. That being said, with dozens of DMPs on the market it can be tricky selecting the right DMP.

    Determining whether a DMP is the best fit comes down to both its feature set as well as the prospective client’s needs. Publishers need to factor in the cost, the accessibility of the user interface (UI), and the system performance among other parameters.

    They can also include how comprehensive the audience segmentation is, adaptability for video and whether a DMP serves the needs of publishers or advertisers better.  Join us, as we narrow the list down to the seven best DMPs for digital publishers.

    What Are Data Management Platforms?

    A DMP is software that stores first, second and third-party user data and leverages that data to help build audience segments that advertisers can use in their audience targeting.

    As part of the real-time bidding (RTB) process, advertisers will generally leverage DMP data in the form of constructed audience segments to instruct a demand-side platform (DSP) on which users to target with ads.

    Publishers and advertisers upload their first-party data into the DMP, which can then be enriched by second-party data gathered from business partnerships and third-party data. DMPs collect third-party audience data — such as customer purchases — from users by leaving third-party cookies on browsers as well as through other sources.

    This third-party data collection has proved invaluable for customer insights, although the push to remove third-party cookies from browsers has complicated this. As third-party cookies are phased out, the best positioned DMPs will be the ones embracing alternatives.

    How Does a Data Management Platform Work?

    DMPs work by synching their collected information with data vendors — organizations that distribute data for third parties — to find relevant audiences to show ads. They do this by using first-party data and audience segments to find high-value users.

    DMP features such as “lookalike modeling”, which searches for similar audience segments, are used to help expand the original target audience.

    These functions boost the performance of the programmatic advertising ecosystem. The right ad in front of the right set of eyes means a higher click-through rate (CTR) which, in turn, means higher advertising income for publishers.

    Data Management Platforms vs Customer Data Platforms

    While a DMP and a customer data platform (CDP) both store and analyze data collected about users, the differences lie in the way they use that data. 

    While DMPs leverage their collected first, second and third-party data to help in both audience acquisition and retargeting, CDPs typically rely on first-party data to influence their pre-existing customer base with targeted ad campaigns or to tailor the customer experience.

    CDPs build a complete view of a customer, similar to a customer relationship management (CRM), completely removing any user anonymity.

    What Are Data Management Platforms’ Benefits?

    DMPs solve the issue of data siloing, where publisher and advertiser user data is segmented across many different platforms and is often locked out of clients’ hands. DMPs provide a single accessible and interoperable data storage solution. 

    DMPs provide reduced costs of advertising, improved reach of relevant segments, more detailed analysis of audience trends, and better data indexing of current customer data. 

    In 2016, data services provider MediaMath helped Coca-Cola reorganize its budget around effective programmatic advertising, thereby reducing both their cost per completed video views (CPCV) by 70-85% and their effective cost per mille (eCPMs) by 30-70%. 

    In 2022, data services provider Lotame helped Dr Martens boost its click-through rates (CTRs) ninefold with a non-third-party cookie solution.

    Although efficient growth is a key component of these case studies, DMPs have additional draws for both publishers and advertisers.

    The Benefits for Publishers

    There are two major benefits publishers can derive from DMPs. 

    Firstly, they provide a birds-eye view of an audience and can furnish rich insights into user data. Publishers can use a DMP to action data gathered from their user base and use this data to create more accurately tailored content for those audiences. 

    Secondly, publishers can also use a DMP to boost their ad revenue. DMPs can ensure that more relevant ads appear on a publisher’s site leading to a higher CTR. 

    The Benefits for Advertisers

    DMPs are essential tools for advertisers seeking to reach a designated audience. DMPs can use data enriched through partnerships and third-party data in lookalike modeling so that advertisers can build new audience segments similar to the ones they have already constructed.

    Having a well-constructed audience segment enhances several key elements of an ad campaign. It boosts the effectiveness of ad impressions — the same marketing messages are delivered to people who are more likely to engage with a product — resulting in better use of ad budgets.

    7 Best Data Management Platforms

    Below are the seven best data management platforms (DMPs) for digital publishing. While the list has been created with digital publishers in mind, each DMP also works well with advertisers.

    The impending “death of the third party cookie” has affected the future of DMPs, leading each of the options below to seek out alternatives to third-party data collection.


    Adobe Audience Manager

    Adobe Audience Manager

    Source: Adobe

    Adobe Audience Manager is multimedia giant Adobe’s DMP. Its features include its Audience Marketplace, which allows advertisers and marketers to check increases in search terms. The tool also provides a comprehensive audience segment builder integrated with a complex AI called Adobe Sensei, which can suggest new traits to add to audience segments.

    Audience Manager also contains built-in integration with Adobe Experience Cloud and Adobe Creative Cloud, meaning that it can be used in tandem with Adobe’s own CDP to maximize marketing and retargeting campaigns. This allows for a simpler, interconnected workflow between multiple systems.

    Audience Manager’s UI is designed to be simple and easy to use wit