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Format: David Kidder will present the thesis, and Max Kalehoff with moderate discussion with esteemed panel of stakeholders.
Description: When computers first arrived at the Los Alamos Scientific Laboratory in the 1950s, scientists immediately started programming them to play chess. Since then, one of the most prominent narratives in computing and artificial intelligence has been a machine capable of beating the world champion. Thanks to Web 2.0 technologies, a similar man-versus-machine debate is emerging in the advertising industry. It’s called advertising automation.
Creativity is just as important as ever, but the notion of “everything advertising is digitally connected” creates several cognitive intersections not unlike chess. Wherever numbers, chance and skill are involved, you can guarantee a quest for automation, connected enhancement, and artificial intelligence to achieve advantage. Where manual, repetitive human labor bred inefficiencies and frustration, the age of Web 2.0 is heralding a computing and algorithmic transformation.
This Web 2.0 transformation is underscored with Google’s contextual ad-auction system, the mother of all automated advertising systems. It’s led the path for a new breed of automated systems that auction, broker, target, and optimize. Consider Tacoda, Revenue Science, Rubicon Project, Turn, and Clickable among others. These varied systems increasingly deliver sophisticated analytics and action-oriented recommendations that yield smarter, more profitable outcomes. Some systems are designed to first benefit publishers, while others are designed to benefit advertisers. Regardless, with over 300 ad networks (or more depending on how you count them), any system to make advertising in the digital age more manageable, efficient, and effective is welcomed.
But can machines really beat or replace humans? There is some speculation that they can in some areas, but they certainly will transform the game. First, media buyers are struggling to scale on a manual basis, as well as optimize. Meanwhile, technology is proving instrumental to targeting and delivering on goals. Finally, automation is removing grunt work and introducing efficiencies that enable humans to deliver more premium value. In other words, machines are making humans bionic. This mix results in market expectations for higher standards and better outcomes.
Panel will address critical questions around the arrival of Web 2.0 advertising automation:
David is a serial entrepreneur with a focus on online product development and Internet advertising and marketing. Prior to co-founding Clickable, David co-founded SmartRay Network, a mobile advertising delivery pioneer. SmartRay’s ad-enabled alerting agents and data-feed management platform was acquired by LifeMinders . Previously, David helped lead corporate development at THINK New Ideas, a publicly traded e-business and interactive advertising firm. He helped grow THINK to more than 500 employees through seven acquisitions in 24 months. Prior to THINK, Kidder founded Net-X, a web authoring and Internet advertising services company, acquired by Target Vision. Kidder is a graduate of the Rochester Institute of Technology and was a recipient of ID Magazine’s International Design Award. He is also the creator and co-author of New York Times bestseller, The Intellectual Devotional, published by Rodale Press.
Max is a renowned expert, evangelist and student of interactive marketing, with an extraordinary track record of defining and building the reputations of early-stage companies. Prior to joining Clickable, Max spent over three years at Nielsen BuzzMetrics , most recently as Vice President of Marketing, where he helped grow the business from a startup into the global measurement standard in online consumer-generated media. Prior to Nielsen, he helped develop some of the most influential brands in Web analytics, including comScore Media Metrix and Hitwise. He frequently lectures to industry organizations and educational groups, such as the Word-of-Mouth Marketing Association, the Advertising Research Foundation, The Marketing Sciences Institute, ad:tech, OMMA and Columbia University. He pens a widely-read blog about marketing, media and life called AttentionMax.com and authors a weekly column in MediaPost. Max holds a Bachelor of Science degree from Syracuse University’s Newhouse School.
Jim co-founded Turn in 2005, bringing his extensive experience in online advertising and search to create a next generation market for online advertising. Most recently, Jim was President of Overture Search, a division of Overture Services, Inc. He joined Overture via its acquisition of AltaVista Company, where he was President and CEO. In this role, he led the company’s highly successful turnaround and sale to Overture. Jim was also President of MyFamily.com, the parent company of Ancestry.com, and President and CEO of ThirdAge Media, which was acquired by MyFamily.com. Prior to that, Jim was President and CEO of Infogrammes North America, a leading global publisher of video games and entertainment software. For five years, he was also Chairman, President and CEO of Accolade Inc, Infogrammes’ predecessor company. Jim has served on the boards of several public and private companies. He is currently on the boards of Syndero Inc. and Sojern Inc. and was most recently Chairman of SideStep Inc. He is also on the advisory boards of Trusted ID and Cellfire and on the management board of Stanford Graduate School of Business. Jim received a BA, MBA and J.D. from Stanford University.
Michael J. Kelly is a digital media advisor and investor. He is a founder and advisor at Clearmeadow Partners and a senior advisor at Veronis, Suhler Stevenson. He also serves on the Board of Directors of Eyeblaster, Contextweb and Americantowns.com. Mr. Kelly was the President of AOL Media Networks from February 2004 until October 2007, responsible for AOL’s global advertising business, including revenues, product and platform development, and media strategy for all of AOL’s properties, as well as its Advertising.com network. Kelly created Media Networks as a separate division of AOL in early 2004. Under his leadership revenues grew from $600 million in 2003 to over $2.2 Billion in just 3 years. Also notable during Mr. Kelly’s tenure was the acquisition of Advertising.Com in 2004, the development of AOL’s network strategy and other acquisitions (such as Tacoda, Lightingcast and Third Screen Media). AOL’s network now has the largest reach of any US internet property. From 2002-2004 Mr. Kelly was President, Global Marketing at Time Warner, where he oversaw the company’s Global Marketing group, which works with the word’s largest advertisers to develop and implement cross-platform marketing solutions that take full advantage of all of Time Warner’s businesses. Prior to joining Time Warner, Mike was the founder and CEO of American Town Network (ATN), an interactive media company that creates local social networks in thousands of towns. ATN has been referred to by Brandweek magazine as the most comprehensive community information resource in the U.S. Mike continues to serve on ATN’s board of directors. Before establishing ATN, Mr. Kelly had a 17-year career with Time Inc. He was on the launch team of Entertainment Weekly and served as its Publisher from 1996-2000. Prior to EW he held several management positions at Fortune Magazine.
Tim Hanlon is Executive Vice President/Ventures for Denuo, the futures consulting practice of advertising agency holding company Publicis Groupe, S.A. He is chiefly responsible for the solicitation, negotiation and oversight of the unit’s strategic partnership and equity investment activity—focused exclusively on paradigm-changing “new media” platforms and technologies. His current role is an outgrowth of his previous work as head of Publicis Groupe Media (PGM) Ventures, and includes formal advisory and directorial positions with over three dozen start-up companies.
Prior to founding the PGM Ventures practice, Hanlon was Senior Vice President/Director, Emerging Contacts for Starcom MediaVest Group, a global media services network of Publicis Groupe Media and parent holding company Publicis Groupe, S.A. He was chiefly responsible for all US client activity and agency initiatives in the field of emerging media technologies, including the firm’s ground-breaking TV 2.0 Practice, centered around evolutionary television platforms such as interactive/enhanced television, on-demand video, digital video recording, interactive program guide navigation, addressable advertising, and digital broadcasting/datacasting.
Hanlon has over 15 years of traditional and interactive agency media experience including roles as Vice President/Director, Strategy & Business Development for the Digital Marketing Group of Chicago-based marketing services agency Frankel, and Director of Interactive Media at Creative Alliance in Louisville, KY. He also served as the Advertising Media Manager for the in-house agency of credit card issuer MBNA America in Wilmington, DE, USA.
Hanlon also has wide-ranging journalism experience, including production and writing stints at CBS News, Sports Illustrated and the Voice of America.
Among numerous advertising and television industry activities, Hanlon was Chairman of the American Association of Advertising Agencies (AAAA) Advanced Television Committee from 2001-05, a founding member of the Steering Committee of the Innovation in Digital Advertising (IDiA) Consortium, and a founding member of the National Academy of Media Arts & Sciences (NAMAS). In 2004, he was an inaugural recipient of Interactive Television Today’s Leadership in Interactive Television Award, and has been named as one of MEDIA Magazine’s “100 People to Know.” His insights into the future of media and advertising are regularly seen in major electronic, print and trade press outlets.
Hanlon holds an MBA from the University of Chicago Graduate School of Business, and a BA from Georgetown University.