Sub-publishers are third-party groups who own traffic other, larger publishers buy to then sell on to advertisers. Sub-publishers don’t deal directly with advertisers in this arrangement.
If an advertiser wants to run campaigns on a specific traffic source that isn’t owned by the publisher they’re working with, then that traffic can still be bought. This is possible because sub-publishers are indirectly providing a traffic source to a client via another publisher.
In this instance, the network you’re dealing with doesn’t own all of what they sell. Instead, they will trade with smaller networks, depending on what is available.
So, what impact does this have on the daily workings of an advertiser? As mentioned, you’re unlikely to deal directly with sub-publishers - they will remain a third party. Instead, advertisers continue to work solely with the network that trades with sub-publishers. Learning about this process can inform which third party actually owns what’s being bought.
To learn more about publishers, such as the difference between publishers, advertisers and networks, check out our glossary entry for the term here. You can also read about Adjust’s technology partners here.