As founder of ZEDO, I have been to many ad:tech events. The first I can remember was at the Hilton hotel in San Francisco – probably in late 1999 or early 2000. The keynote speaker was from a company called Engage: a long gone ad serving company. Another memorable one was in LA in 2001. We had a joint booth with Specific Media who was a big customer of ours at the time. It was memorable mostly because there were only exhibitors there – no one was walking between the booths!
But it was great to be at ad:tech Delhi 2014 this year. This was the third or fourth ad:tech in India and it was probably the best. The energy all around was high. Everyone was in a good mood and ready to do business. Our booth was taller, wider, and better lit than the others. It looked great. The ZEDO and ZINCbyZEDO logos were modern and vibrant and well co-ordinated. The ZEDO bags were seen all over the place.
Our annual party at the Rubicon bar was full of senior people, fun and energy. Even the BBC worldwide head of Ad Ops and 5 people from his team attended and stayed at the party. Terence, Abbas and Abdulla made sure that I spent at least a little time with all the people who wanted to meet me. The Associate VP of Sales for Money Control had not seen our InArticle or mobile High Impact Format and was excited to see them and said they are looking for innovation.
One other noticeable thing was that India Today, which is selling our High Impact/High CTR formats, is our biggest supporter. They were evangelizing ZEDO technology and service proudly to all their friends. That is the best thing for us. The whole ZEDO team should be very proud of this. Our innovation is really helping our customers and in return they are really rooting for and helping us. So let’s keep pushing for publishers to implement the InArticle and the mobile High Impact Format, and also sell it themselves.
In advertising it is always important to test two things and see which works better. Therefore we changed our flyers to talk about High CTR Formats instead of High Impact Formats to see if this got us more interest. I am waiting to see if that language works better. Personally, I think advertisers just focus on CTRs, no matter how much the dialogue appears to change.
When advertisers ask me how we get higher CTRs, we explain that because we have years of technical experience we innovate new formats and continually improve them . Only real technology companies can do things like this. Examples of continuous improvements are our leave-behind on the InArticle and the static clickable image that is shown after the video ad has finished playing. Because we are a tech company, advertisers can easily believe that we get click-throughs from better technology – not the fake clicks many networks offer through bots and fraud.
The time is right in India. Internet usage is finally taking off. Mobile is also taking off with many sites now seeing half their impressions coming from smart phones. This is exciting. We have timed our best technology and best video formats just when publishers are most in need of them. Mobile and video ad demand is rocketing and will take ZEDO with it. The same move to video and mobile (away from banners) is happening in the US too. Jack Wagner, ZEDO head of Publisher Development, says that everyone at Digiday Publisher Summit was looking for video formats and mobile ad formats. 2014 is our year.