TechBytes with Ayal Steiner, VP of Global Ad Revenue at Outbrain

TechBytes with Ayal Steiner, VP of Global Ad Revenue at Outbrain

Please tell us how Outbrain is preparing for the FIRST biggest Sales season of the COVID-19 era.

We are seeing a clear trend of established brands moving into Direct-To-Consumer models and leveraging digital channels such as Search, Social and Discovery to reach customers. Historically we have always seen a surge in advertiser activity towards global sales events such as black friday / cyber Monday etc, but with Covid-19 we expect an unprecedented surge in activity.

We are running workshops and online webinars to educate marketers on new techniques and creative best practices to maximize their results in the coming months.

What kind of expectations should e-commerce retailers have from their technology investments during the Sales season?

With more advertiser activity, it’s going to be much more competitive than previous years. This means starting ASAP and that CPM / CPC rates are most likely going to be higher, reflecting the higher value audience.

When customers are looking for comfort, security and convenience of online shopping, where do Customer Experience trends move in retail?

Customers expect faster, simpler, easier online shopping and customer experience processes.

Purchase decisions online are now made not only based on price but also based on billing options, shipping time and customer service.

Do you think we would see the end of physical stores in the developed countries as the COVID-19 crisis deepens further?

Nope. In fact, we see several pure online DTC players moving to open brick-and-mortar shops.

Different customer segments have different buying habits.

But we do expect shops to be more of an “experience center” where customers can see, measure, touch and experience products first hand but buying it online at a later stage. Home appliance brands are a great example of this.

Tell us about some specific Outbrain digital marketing campaigns that helped you understand customer sentiments through the crisis.

During COVID-19 we have seen the market shifting around the global pandemic.

Interest in travel content and with it travel advertisers such as airlines, hotels and tourism board paused activity.

At the same time, we have seen a surge in areas such as DIY home improvements, Gardening, streaming services, Gaming, home cooking, mental and physical health.

We also saw many B2B tech companies pivot their physical event based marketing activities into online lead gen.

Tag a person from the industry whose answers you would like to see here:

Alex Naito, Chief Data Office Dentsu.

Thank you for answering all our questions!

Ayal is the VP – Global Ad Revenue at Outbrain.

The Open Web's Discovery & Native Advertising Feed |

Outbrain is the world’s leading discovery and native advertising feed for the open web. A third of the world’s Internet-connected population explore and discover information through our feed technology, which is trusted by emerging to established brands and integrated into thousands of media companies’ tech stacks to manage and monetize their publishing operations. Outbrain operates in 55 countries and is headquartered in New York City with offices in 18 cities worldwide.

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