Miss the iMedia Breakthrough Summit in sunny Florida this week? Are you an iMedia vet who has slogged your way through the infamous One Minute Match Ups and feeling a pang of nostalgia for that frenetic hour of power? Are you just interested in an overview of the companies shaping the digital media landscape?
Lucky for you the One Minute Match Up recap is here. Here's a list of the companies I met this week—and a gauge of how well their sales team is doing as describing their wares. Did I get it right? Let me know in comments.
DBG - Digital Broadcasting Group is one of a handful of video ad networks that seem to be more interested in becoming a video producer than a network. They produce branded content on the cheap and bury the production costs in the media buy. I don't know what this says about their network, but brands are hungry for content. I'm interested in understanding better how they work with creative agencies.
Adconion/Joost/Red Lever - Adconion's family of properties is another one in the space providing a comprehensive video solution. Now, I'm a student of brand positioning, so I keep busting their balls about creating confusion in the market with all these different companies. However, they are producing some good branded content with Red Lever and distributing that content over their Adconion video ad network. They also just bought Joost, which gives them a potential Hulu competitor. And they don't rhyme with onion. Oh, and they ROCK because they gave out iPads! Can't wait, guys. Thanks!
BBE - Yet another video ad network/production studio. See what I mean?
Brightroll - This is the video ad network with the most focused story. They've got scale. Apparently, they are #3 after YouTube and Yahoo in reach.
Tremor Media - Another video ad network. No idea what makes them unique.
Eyeblaster - When you think of Eyeblaster do images of disruptive ad units that send a MINI Cooper zooming across your web page come to mind? Not anymore. These guys are now competing with DoubleClick and Atlas. They've built a new ad server from the ground up called MediaMind that simplifies the process of buying and reporting across media channels. Worth a rethink.
EyeWonder - Rich media vendor. I'm really not clear what the difference is between these guys and Eyeblaster and PointRoll. I'd like to know (hint, guys: comments)
Specific Media - Helps you buy media specifically. Or something.
Adbid Central - This is a futures market to buy inventory at futures prices. I'm not sure exactly how it works, but it seems like as the industry moves to an exchange model for display, this is a new tool that will allow smaller markets to buy discounted futures inventory of premium placements. Had drinks with the CEO and I can tell you he's a man of integrity and he believes in this product. Give it a look.
Operative - This seems like a great company to help agencies outsource some of the mundane services associated with media like ad trafficking. I like the idea of putting commoditized services outside of the agency and these guys have just landed deals with some big shops. I'm a fan.
Quantcast - Uses its giant pool of cookie data to create "lookalikes" that exhibit similar behaviors to your audience. You can then buy those lookalikes and target them with media. Smart stuff.
Audience Science - These guys used to be about behavioral targeting, but the guy said they're not doing that anymore, they're doing something else, but I don't remember what. So, now I'm confused about what they do.
eMarketer - Great data resource. Analyst Noah Elkin gave a presentation that was really smart. Not priced to be affordable to smaller agencies, however, who are becoming more and more important players in the industry (hint, hint, hint)
Greystripe - Immersive mobile ad units with video and interactivity.
WhitePages.com - WhitePages.com can be low-hanging fruit in a campaign because people using it are searching for something.
ComScore - Great resource for high-caliber audience behavioral data. Also not priced for smaller agencies.
Rhythm NewMedia - Media that's new. I think that means mobile. Can't remember.
Buddy Media - Cool tool for building Facebook pages.
aiMatch - I remember thinking this sounds really interesting when I heard about it, but I can't for the life of me remember what it was.
CNN Money - Great way to target rich people. Not just CNN, but they run other brands' (I think Fortune, etc.) sites as well.
NAVTEQ - Localized ads in GPS devices. This is going to have a big future.
SimulMedia - A flight simulator for online advertising publishers. Not the kind of flight you fly. The digital media kind.
Knowledge Networks - They know. I don't.
Vibrant - In-blog highlighted text rollover ads. Roll over the word 'feet' and a shoe ad appears next to your mouse. So smart.
Tribal Fusion - Create a custom ad networks tailored to your needs
National Geographic - These guys have such great content and i love how they don't use buzzwords in their pitch they just show their content. This year it was Casey, the host of a new show on their new Wild channel and his best friend. Who is a grizzly bear.
Pandora - How do you not love Pandora? They help people find great music.
Aperture - Data overlays for your ad inventory buys so you can target specific individual impressions.
Turn - In my opinion, Turn is one of the most significant companies in the digital advertising industry. They have a tool called a DSP (Direct Something Platform) that allows you to circumvent ad networks and plug directly into the exchanges to buy your inventory. The premise is that if you have multiple ad networks on a buy, they are all competing for the same impressions and bidding the price up. It's a convincing premise. Then you can add data overlays from companies like Aperture, Blue Kai or even Quantcast to focus which individual impressions you want to bid on. If I worked at an ad network, I'd be brushing up my resume.
Vizu - Get research insights on the fly to help optimize your campaign. Vizu just asks one question so they get much higher response rates and faster learnings. One group of respondents sees the ad. The other doesn't.
InsightExpress - Get deeper insights into brand metrics that you can use to optimize your campaign. Takes longer to accumulate, but get survey data that you can use to measure your campaign and understand what's working.
jiwire - Location-based wi-fi ads. I love the sponsored wifi stuff they do. Example, I was at the Ft. Myers airport. Opened Firefox on my laptop and log-in screen came up. Asked me to take an action (in this case answer a few questions for the sponsor, Ft. Myers airport) and then gave me free wifi. I'd gladly engage with a brand to avoid paying $5 for wifi. They also have a Free WiFi Finder iPhone app.
admob - Mobile ad network that got bought by Google. I think these guys have the biggest reach of any mobile ad network.
Digg - On Digg, the community decides what's news. And you can buy ads there.
Universal Sports - More golf and badminton than football/baseball/basketball