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How Datorama's TotalConnect Overcomes SpotX’s Automated Reporting Challenges

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How Datorama's TotalConnect Overcomes SpotX’s Automated Reporting Challenges

Nabler typically engages clients to solve edge use cases for advertisers and agencies, but we have a particular affinity for Publishers.

Marketing dashboards, custom data workflows, and automated reports are the usual requests, but persistent data challenges exist regardless of industry. In particular, Publishers encounter tricky data integration challenges often due to the considerable lack of standard API connections, and custom business rules that are required to execute their business.

For Publishers, it is commonplace that 30 or more data sources are required to fulfill the most basic reporting projects. Our engagements cover many of the most popular SSP data providers, such as Pubmatic, Google Ads Manager, OpenX, Appnexus, and Rubicon. But, at times, SpotX can be a bit complicated to integrate and automate for a number of reasons we will shortly explain.

SpotX is a video ad serving platform (DSP/SSP) used for Publishers and advertisers that want to monetize content across devices and media formats. SpotX helps a publisher to connect with demand partners and sell video ads space, thus maximizing yield and it is popular for its header bidding solutions, video monetization reports, and effective tracking of Programmatic Direct.

“Datorama’s TotalConnect is a data upload method that allows you to upload any flat file into the system through the Datorama data model, and thereby customize data ingestion. You can use Datorama’s TotalConnect when you need to upload data from a source and no API connector exists.”

Datorama’s SpotX Integration and Automated Marketing Dashboard Solutions

Unfortunately, the mere existence of an API connection does not necessarily solve every automation project requirement, and this is particularly true of Publishers looking to onboard SSP data. Whether you work for a large media holding company, or small programmatic media buyer, your business requirements are often unique and so are the data structures and business rules that support your reporting automation needs.

At the time of this writing, Datorama lacks a native connector for SpotX. But, there are two ways of integrating the data within the platform – even without an API connection. This is one of the many features that make Datorama flexible and unique.

The first is to use Datorama’s Total Connect Method. This is the standard method of flat file integration when native connections are absent and scheduled reports can be retrieved through email, for example.

When you create a TotalConnect data stream in Datorama, you upload a sample file of the ingested data. This way, you can identify and verify the appropriate data stream type the data belongs to (via the data model), and then you can map the source fields to the corresponding Datorama fields.

The second option is to build a custom connector. Although this method provides the most flexibility, creating a custom data connector has its challenges. These custom data connectors can be costly and time consuming to develop even if the data provider’s documentation is optimal.

Datorama’s TotalConnect feature, below, helps publishers overcome their need to use flat files and manual reporting processes that typify so many Publisher engagements.  


Below is Datorama’s preferred method for creating a custom data connector (API) through scripts. 

How Datorama Helps Publishers Overcome Data Integration Challenges:

A Publisher can build custom reports within SpotX’s reporting console and schedule a flat file with the necessary fields to be integrated within Datorama’s Total Connect. Some of the fields we typically see include insights into revenue streams, traffic, advertiser performance, referrals, and deals, to name a few.

After onboarding and ingesting the files into Datorama, an automated retrieval process or custom workflow can be established between SpotX and Datorama to avoid manual uploads by using an available Stream Email ID that is unique to each data stream onboarded. See an example of this data delivery method in Datorama below:


Datorama routinely uses this retrieval method to quickly process reporting data received through an email just as it does for hundreds of other data providers. For many Publishers, TotalConnect is a welcome alternative to manual transformation through spreadsheets or similarly expensive and time-consuming reporting methods.

However, SpotX provides us with a unique data integration challenge.

Fortunately, custom Reports can be created in SpotX and sent as an email, but to access the flat file, you must authenticate before the download can be retrieved and processed. Therefore, your ability to establish an automated connection between SpotX and Datorama through TotalConnect will not immediately help you. See the secured link shown in the SpotX automated reporting email, below: 


However, Datorama and SpotX offer an alternative.

SpotX can route individual, custom reports to data repositories like AWS, and no additional authentications are required after initial setup. For example, Publishers often want to create a report that combines video performance by advertiser to monetize performance by quartiles or completion rates.  This relationship can be created as a custom report, and that report can then be sent to AWS and then, can be quickly retrieved and onboarded into Datorama. 

See Datorama’s method of creating an AWS connection string, below.


Our clients often come to us because their reporting processes are manual, error prone and difficult to scale. Pre-engagement, a typical SpotX pivot report might look something like the following:

spotx pivot

But, as a certified implementation provider, we help our clients move from spreadsheets to performance visualizations. We can take flat files and process them to look like the following in Datorama: 


As a certified Datorama implementation partner, we follow a defined process while meticulously aligning with our clients’ requirements and approved technical solutions. However, Publishers often provide exceptions where our process requires truly creative, strategic thinking.

Partner with one of Datorama’s leaders in Publisher Data Management. We will document, build, and automate a new reporting solution for you, or extend the utility of your existing reporting infrastructure.


Solve Your Publisher Reporting Automation Challenges with Nabler