Inskin enables native DSP programmatic buying with Kevel Relay
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Inskin enables native DSP programmatic buying with Kevel Relay

Inskin does something no one else could — serve non-IAB native ads through a DSP


Return-on-investment (ROI)


Faster launch vs from scratch

What Inskin Wanted

Inskin specializes in rich-media display advertising, partners with 190 publishers, and works with over 1,000 blue-chip brand clients. Their well-designed ad formats, matched with outstanding creative value, deliver highly-engaging, high-value ad experiences that don't annoy users.

Inskin sells these rich-media placements via direct deals and relationships with large publishers and advertisers. As more and more companies looked to move their buying to DSPs, though, it became apparent that Inskin needed to make their inventory available to DSPs via private marketplace deals (PMPs) if they wanted to retain these ad buys. This would entail integrating with an ad exchange.

Unfortunately, as Inskin's highly-bespoke ads aren't standard IAB ad units, it wasn't possible to just hook into an ad exchange and get going. In order to enable advertisers to buy their inventory through a PMP deal, Inskin had to come up with an innovative way to circumvent how ad exchanges worked.

So Inskin devised a creative solution to bypass the IAB-limitation and used Kevel Relay to accomplish it.

inskin native ads

In designing their platform, Inskin had a few key goals:

  1. Enable buyers to purchase Inskin inventory through the advertiser's DSP
  2. Maintain the same highly-curated, rich-media experience that their publishers and advertisers had come to expect
  3. Release the product in months, not years

Due to the fact ad exchanges are not structured for innovative, native ad placements, Inskin knew the only option was for them to build a solution that acted like a translator between their internal tech and that of the exchange.

Designing this product from scratch could take years, so they integrated with Relay's server-side APIs to speed up the build process.

Within a year we opened up our supply to eight DSPs - and it was the flexibility of Relay that helped us get there.

Reda Borchardt, Inskin CTO

What Inskin built with Kevel Relay

After integrating Relay's APIs into their tech stack, Inskin was able to quickly build the ad solution they wanted, which works like this:

  1. First, Inskin partners with DSPs to set up PMP deals on an ad exchange
  2. Next, when a publisher wants to display an Inskin ad, a request is sent by Inskin to an ad exchange to decide what promotion to place
  3. The exchange then sends Relay an API call containing the winning advertiser/campaign, along with details like the tracking URLs
  4. Kevel Relay augments this information with the actual rich-media creatives to display and sends this data (the creatives + tracking URLs) via an API call to Inskin
  5. Inskin places the ad onto the publisher's site and uses the exchange's tracking pixels so reporting could be done through them
curl -H 'Content-Type:application/json' \
  -X POST \
  -d '{"placements":[{
  "user":{"key":"abc"}}' \
{ "user": { "key": "abc" },
  "decisions": {
    "div1": {
      "adID": 1234567,
      "creativeID": 7654321,
      "flightID": 9876543,
      "campaignID": 3456789,
      "clickURL": "",
      "imageURL": "",
      "height": 250,
      "width": 300,

inskin native ads

The results

Inskin saw positive results immediately upon launching:

  1. High ROI Inskin had a 16x return-on-investment (ROI), meaning the monthly revenue they are driving is 16x higher than the monthly Kevel fee
  2. Launch date Using Relay they released this product in just months - an 80% reduction in dev time versus trying to build it from scratch

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