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How to load data from DoubleClick to Google BigQuery

Access your data on DoubleClick (for Publishers)

The first step in loading your DoubleClick (for Publishers) data to any kind of data warehouse solution, is to access your data and start extracting it.

For accessing your data you can use the for Publishers API which is implemented using the SOAP protocol and consequently this will add some complexity to your development as you will have to manage SOAP and XML responses. However, to help you get started Google offers client libraries for Java, .NET, Python, PHP, and Ruby that offer wrapper functions and various features.

In addition to the above, the things that you have to keep in mind when dealing with the for Publishers (DoubleClick) API, are:

  1. Rate limits. Depending on the chosen plan and API version that is being used, for Publishers API allows a number of calls per hour.
  2. Authentication. You authenticate all for Publishers API requests using OAuth2.
  3. Error Handling. Make sure that you handle errors correctly

Each custom report is composed of the following:

  1. Dimensions. The user can select a number of dimensions for the report.
  2. Dimension Attributes. Specific dimensions can optionally be enhanced with some attributes. There are constraints on what attributes can be selected, depending on the dimensions that the user has chosen.
  3. Columns. Can be considered as metrics that provide all the trafficking statistics and revenue information available for the chosen dimension object. There are constraints of what columns can be combined with what dimensions.

About DoubleClick (for Publishers)

DoubleClick (for Publishers) for publishers is a platform initially designed to facilitate the process of delivering ads to websites or mobile devices. As per June 2018, DoubleClick for Publishers was merged with DoubleClick Ad Exchange for Publishers, a new online advertisement service brand introduced by Google.

While using DoubleClick you can define ad units, i.e. the spaces within your website or app where your ads will be shown. Without any further actions, DoubleClick can then determine the best possible placement per ad request and record data relevant to this specific ad campaign. You can also produce various custom reports on the properties that you have selected to expose in order to gain insights on the performance of your ads as well as to determine any possible improvements.

Transform and prepare your DoubleClick (for Publishers) Data for Google BigQuery Replication

After you have accessed your data on DoubleClick (for Publishers), you will have to transform it based on two main factors,

  1. The limitations of the database that the data will be loaded onto
  2. The type of analysis that you plan to perform

Each system has specific limitations on the data types and data structures that it supports. If for example, you want to push data into Google BigQuery, then you can send nested data like JSON directly, but keep in mind that in the case of a SOAP API like DoubleClick, you get XML responses.

Of course, when you are dealing with tabular data stores, like Microsoft SQL Server, this is not an option. Instead, you will have to flatten out your data, just as in the case of JSON, before loading into the database.

Also, you have to choose the right data types. Again, depending on the system that you will send the data to and the data types that the API exposes to you, you will have to make the right choices. These choices are important because they can limit the expressivity of your queries and limit your analysts on what they can do directly out of the database.

With DoubleClick data, you have two main additional sources of complexity. When it comes to data types you have to keep in mind that SOAP is using XML to describe the service and the data, so the data types that you have to map are coming from XML and might have automatically be transformed into the primitive data types of the language that you are using.

Also, you have to consider that the reports you’ll get from DoubleClick are like CSV files in terms of their structure and you need to somehow identify what and how to map to a table into your database. This way you will be able to join, combine and query your data in order to assess the performance of various ads and finally improve ROI for display ad campaigns.

Export data from DoubleClick (for Publishers) to Google BigQuery

If you want to load DoubleClick (for Publishers) data to Google BigQuery, you have to use one of the following supported data sources.

  1. Google Cloud Storage
  2. Sent data directly to BigQuery with a POST request
  3. Google Cloud Datastore Backup
  4. Streaming insert
  5. App Engine log files
  6. Cloud Storage logs

From the above list of sources, 5 and 6 are not applicable in our case.

For Google Cloud Storage, you first have to load your data into it, there are a few options on how to do this, for example, you can use the console directly as it is described here and do not forget to follow the best practices.

Another option is to post your data through the JSON API, as we see again APIs play an important role in both the extraction but also the loading of data into our data warehouse. In its simplest case, it’s just a matter of one HTTP POST request using a tool like CURL or Postman.

After you have loaded your data into Google Cloud Storage, you have to create a Load Job for BigQuery to actually load the data into it, this Job should point to the source data in Cloud Storage that have to be imported, this happens by providing source URIs that point to the appropriate objects.

If you are looking into other data warehouses you may check our how to’s on DoubleClick to Redshift, DoubleClick to MS SQL Server, DoubleClick to Snowflake, DoubleClick to PostgreSQL.

The best way to load data from DoubleClick (for Publishers) to Google BigQuery

So far we just scraped the surface of what can be done with Google BigQuery and how to ingest data into it. The way to proceed relies heavily on the data you want to load, from which service they are coming from, and the requirements of your use case.

Things can get even more complicated if you want to integrate data coming from different sources. A possible alternative, instead of writing, hosting, and maintaining a flexible data infrastructure, is to use a product like RudderStack that can handle this kind of problem automatically for you.

Easily use the DoubleClick (for Publishers) connector from RudderStack, along with multiple sources or services like databases, CRM, email campaigns, analytics, and more. Quickly and safely ingest DoubleClick data into BigQuery and start generating insights from your data.

Don't want to go through the pain of direct integration? RudderStack's DoubleClick for Publishers integration makes it easy to send data from DoubleClick for Publishers to Google BigQuery.

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