AdJuggler, a long-time supply-side platform has been quietly expanding it business into intelligent monetization, mobile application support, and mediation across heterogeneous demand sources. John Shomaker, CEO of AdJuggler, reports that the business scaled nearly 140% in 2012 and is tracking to similar growth rates in 2013. Earlier this month, the company released version 8.0.4, which focuses primarily on “plumbing features” that improve brand safety for its demand partners and monetization yield for its publishing customers.
Otilia Otlacan: I didn’t notice much press about AdJuggler’s recent 8.0.4 release. Why not?
John Shomaker: In general, customers and the press are most interested in user-facing features: new modules, changes to work flows, reporting, etc. Although the version includes several improvements in these areas, the primary focus of our recent development is on improving brand safety, providing greater domain transparency and yield for our customer’s inventory, and, overall doubling-down on our quality initiative.
Otilia: What’s driving AdJuggler’s quality initiative?
John: We continue to provide a globally, scalable technology platform, which historically may have been less oriented to the specific campaigns customers were running and the inventory being served. As the platform began mediating both direct and indirect demand in 2010 through its real-time bidding (RTB) channels, it quickly became clear: all dollars are not green. Quality demand requires transparent, quality inventory. Period.
Otilia: Clearly, AdJuggler isn’t alone on this mission. Do you feel the industry is finally serious about eliminating inappropriate demand and falsified inventory?
John: In other industries, we might call it the gray-market, if not illegal trade. It’s correct to consider it a tax on marketers. comScore, the IAB, and others are rightly trying to push the conversation of transparency, but the tipping point, in my opinion, is sheer economics. The margins at the bottom of the media pyramid, where the gray-market exists, have become so low that they’ve crossed the marginal cost of managing and delivering those volumes at the platform scale required to generate profit.
Otilia: So, gray-market operators and arbitragers can no longer manage their business in-house?
John: Correct. The scale they need requires truly robust, global platforms. And even though LumaScape suggests a glut of ad technology, there’s really only a few – including AdJuggler – that provide the scale. In order to grow, we and our platform brethren are increasingly motivated to eliminate the gray-market participants.
Otilia: So, can you highlight some specifics about 8.0.4 that reinforce AdJuggler’s quality initiative?
John: In short, AdJuggler Version 8.0.4 adds, shores up, or enhances a number of brand safety features, such as white listing of quality domains and black listing of malware, pornographic content, and other inappropriate sites before we pass any impression opportunity to our RTB demand sources for auction. We’re able to pass more attributes to buyers about our customers’ inventory and we’ve added new methods to detect click fraud and IP/domain impression bots. We continue to root out iFrame obfuscation, frame stuffing, over-frequent page refreshing, while also adding targeting for above-the-fold positioning. It’s a work in progress, so, in our opinion we must continue to innovate in these areas.
AdJuggler (www.adjuggler.com) enables publishers and networks to source and manage all media through one, integrated platform that maximizes yield, based on the value and preferences of each unique user. The company’s SaaS-based platform provides full-featured campaign management across display, mobile, and video formats, along with its Exchange Media Program, which monetizes non-guaranteed inventory from numerous RTB and network traffic sources. Customers also have access to AdJuggler’s rich API and mobile SDKs to integrate AdJuggler with other business applications. AdJuggler, Inc. is headquartered in Alexandria, VA.