4 Problems an Advertising Data Infrastructure Solves For Your Agency

PPC agency employees discuss metrics with charts and graphs

Companies entrust digital advertising agencies to manage PPC campaigns on their behalf. They expect their marketing dollars to be wisely invested in channels that drive the best results and returns on their investments.

To meet those expectations, digital advertisers rely on data. Data is essential to launching new strategies, driving campaign optimizations, and determining if clients’ performance goals are being met.

But data management remains a major hurdle for many businesses. A survey of approximately 700 business professionals by Salesforce found that only 23% of respondents say they are able to act on a small portion of the customer data they collect.


There are four major data management challenges that limit an agency’s ability to capture and capitalize on all of its clients’ marketing and advertising data.

1. Data is Dispersed

Agencies often run campaigns on multiple ad platforms for clients. Each ad platform has different campaign types, ad types, metrics, dimensions, and report formats. To gather holistic performance insights, data must be pulled from each platform, standardized, stored, and analyzed for each client. Joining ad data with clients’ other data (analytics, internal, or third-party) adds complexity since a single client may have several additional data sources.

2. Data is Siloed

Departments are unable to share data freely across the organization due to reasons such as technical limitations or security issues. Since each department has its own systems and tools, the data has no standard format and cannot be easily aggregated or analyzed. Teams often make short-sighted decisions based on limited data.

3. Data is Obsolete or Incomplete

Disparate data takes time to manually assemble especially when housed on two or more PPC platforms. By the time it can be analyzed for business insights, it may be too late to apply changes to correct problems. Dependent on how data is collected and stored, important data points or historical metrics may be missing which makes certain analyses impossible.

4. Engineering Resources are Finite

Engineering resources at digital ad agencies are often spread thin. Ad platforms regularly launch and sunset versions of their APIs. This requires ongoing management by the agency and their development team to ensure their data doesn’t become obsolete. Once data is pulled via the ad platform APIs, the data must be stored and maintained at scale. For engineers lacking PPC domain expertise, aggregating data together “correctly” for digital advertisers is costly and time-consuming.

How Does an ADI Solve Data Management Challenges

Employees input data into artificial intelligence brain to analyze PPC performance

Leading agencies are finding ways to address these issues head on. Building custom ad technology is one clear way to remove these data challenges and, in turn, create true competitive advantages in the crowded PPC agency market.

But rather than spending months engineering the data structures and storage necessary to build such technology, agencies can gain access to all their robust, cross-channel ad data with an Advertising Data Infrastructure (ADI) instead.

1. Data is Centralized

An ADI centralizes an agency’s current and historical PPC data in one place, making it available to anyone on the team with access. Shape’s ADI imports data from seven ad platforms via our Shape API. It then normalizes it and stores it in a fully-managed data warehouse unique to each agency. Instead of spending hours aggregating data across multiple ad platforms for each of their clients, digital advertisers can run complex analyses in Google BigQuery. Or, an analyst can link the ADI to Google Sheets or Google Data Studio to create beautiful reports that automatically update with fresh data.

2. Data is Democratized

Agencies that utilize a PPC data management platform can break down data silos that limit innovation and communication across teams. When all team members have access to the same unified data source, they all analyze and report on the same set of ppc data. Similarly, other departments can easily access PPC data (ex: customer success teams can generate client reports) without getting roadblocked.

3. Data is Fresh and Complete

Few agency jobs are more repetitive, boring, and time-consuming than aggregating data across agency clients. An ADI eliminates the low-value task of pulling PPC data so that team members can focus on analyzing it for meaningful insights instead. Data is fresh (less than 24 hours old) meaning that campaigns can be optimized quickly to correct problems before they escalate. Finally, an ADI creates a singular record of all the agency’s clients’ PPC data meaning historical data is complete and accessible.

4. Engineering Resources are Strengthened

Trust in and use of PPC solutions can erode quickly if the data flowing into the tool is incorrect or incomplete. Agencies that utilize an ADI benefit from a reliable, consistent source of fresh PPC data that is maintained and updated regularly by our team of engineers. This allows agencies to focus development resources on building industry-changing tools for PPC management, reporting, and more. But if your agency is still not 100% sure how to execute a project, our engineering team provides built-in consulting services as part of our premium ADI offering.

Triangle graph shows that PPC agencies who want to compete in 2020 and beyond need to create custom ad technology that leverages their unique data

Start Solving Your Data Challenges Today

Launching your own Advertising Data Infrastructure is a quick and easy step your agency can take to start eliminating pressing data challenges.

We’ve made campaign-level data, API-access, and data warehousing free. Start building your own solutions today or contact us to learn more about the Shape ADI.

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