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How to load data from DoubleClick to MS SQL Server

Access your data on DoubleClick

The first step in loading your DoubleClick data to any data warehouse solution is accessing them and start extracting it.

For accessing your data, you can use the for Publishers API, which is implemented using the SOAP protocol. 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 used, for Publishers, API allows a number of calls per hour.
  2. Authentication - You authenticate all DoubleClick 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 user’s dimensions.
  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.

Transform and prepare your DoubleClick Data for MS SQL Server Replication

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

  1. The limitations of the database that is going to be used for loading
  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 you want to push data into Google BigQuery, 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 dealing with tabular data stores, like Microsoft SQL Server, this is not an option. Instead, you will have to flatten out any data you own, 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 you will send the data to and 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 uses XML to describe the service and data, so data types that you have to map are coming from XML and might have automatically been 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 identify somehow what and how to map to a table into your database. This way, you will be able to combine and query your own data to assess the performance of various ads and finally improve ROI for display ad campaigns.

Export data from DoubleClick to Microsoft SQL Server

So, after you have managed to access data on DoubleClick and you have also figured out the structure that the data will have on your database, you need to load any data into the database, in our case, into a Microsoft SQL Server.

As a feature-rich and mature product, MS SQL Server offers a large and diverse set of methods for loading data to a database. One way of importing data into your database is by using the SQL Server Import and Export Wizard. With it and through a visual interface, you will be able to bulk load data from a number of supported data sources.

Another way for importing bulk data in an SQL Server, both on Azure and on premises, is by using the bcp utility. This is a command line tool that is built specifically for bulk loading and unloading of data from an MS SQL database.

Finally and for compatibility reasons, especially if you are managing databases from different vendors, you can you BULK INSERT SQL statements.

In a similar way and as it happens with the rest of the databases, you can also use the standard INSERT statements, where you will be adding data row-by-row directly to a table. It is the most basic and straightforward way of adding data in a table but it doesn’t scale very well with larger datasets.

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

Updating your DoubleClick data on MS SQL Server

As you will be generating more data on DoubleClick, you will need to update your older data on an MS SQL Server database. This includes new records, together with updates to older records that for any reason have been updated on DoubleClick.

You will need to periodically check DoubleClick for new data and repeat the process that has been described previously while updating your currently available data if needed. Updating an already existing row on a SQL Server table is achieved by creating UPDATE statements.

Another issue that you need to take care of is the identification and removal of any duplicate records on your database. Either because DoubleClick does not have a mechanism to identify new and updated records or because of errors on any data pipelines, duplicate records might be introduced to your database.

In general, ensuring the quality of data that is inserted in your database is a big and difficult issue and MS SQL Server features like TRANSACTIONS can help tremendously, although they do not solve the problem in the general case.

The best way to load data from DoubleClick (for Publishers) to MS SQL Server

So far we just scraped the surface of what can be done with DoubleClick (for Publishers) 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 MS SQL Server and start generating insights from your data.

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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 MS SQL Server.