Interview with Liam Galin, President and CEO, Matomy

Liam Galin

“The future of mobile advertising is in-app. Consumers today are spending more time than ever before on their smartphones – up to five hours a day.”

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Tell us about your role at Matomy and how you got here.

I joined Matomy as President and CEO in 2018 following a long career in technology and global business, with a focus on telecommunications. Before landing at Matomy, I served as President and CEO of Flash Networks, the leading provider of optimization, monetization and security solutions for mobile operators. My interest in high-tech, in general, stems from my curiosity and attraction to computers since I was a kid and was later on enhanced by my service as the head of a research and development department in the Israeli Defense Forces’ elite 8200 Intelligence Unit.

What’s the most fascinating aspect of leading a media advertising company in a tech-heavy industry?

Actually, we don’t see ourselves as a media company – Matomy has evolved from its incarnation and growth as a media company to a leading global provider of data-driven programmatic solutions.

How is the media tech industry different from when you first started?

There have been two important shifts in the industry over the last few years: from performance to programmatic advertising and from many vendors to a duopoly-dominated marketplace.

Given the changing dynamic of advertising analytics and customer insights, where do you see Matomy fitting in the adtech ecosystem?

Matomy’s extensive data capabilities allow us to assist our partners in predicting ad trends and personalized – albeit anonymous – consumer needs. We utilize our cutting-edge technology and, instead of storming users with too many irrelevant ads, we generate segmented audiences and customer insights, enabling highly-targeted, personalized ads. This is a win-win situation where users are less interrupted and are more responsive, which benefits advertisers.

What is the ‘State of Audience Data and Analytics’ technology in 2018?

Audience data and analytics technology are still in their infancy. While consumer privacy should always be a major priority, over-concern has deterred people from benefiting fully from the advantages of audience segmentation – it’s just not being explored fast enough in our industry. Audience data can be generated without jeopardizing users’ privacy but prejudice and misunderstanding create confusion.

How does Matomy leverage these numbers for better ad performance?

Our Mobfox platform offers publishers a new level of insight and prediction into their anonymous best users – in terms of demographics and behaviors – which can be leveraged for better decision making in all aspects of their business.

What does your ‘Ideal Customer’ Profile look like? Which new geographies are you currently targeting?

When it comes to in-app advertising, app developers and publishers are our number one audience – and since the US is the hub of most in-app advertising activity, it is our go-to geography. That said, we are active in Europe and China and are growing in Latin America.

What are your predictions on the most influential disruptions in Mobile Advertising and Video technologies for 2018-2022?

The future of mobile advertising is in-app. Consumers today are spending more time than ever before on their smartphones – up to five hours a day – and of that time, 87% is spent using apps. As more people install ad blockers, desktop and mobile web have become increasingly problematic – but mobile apps are still removed from that issue. And with programmatic in-app rising, as well as the superior demographic and geolocation data available through apps, and innovative and engaging in-app ad formats taking hold, in-app will be a tremendous boon to advertisers looking to optimize audience targeting and drive conversions.

How do you prepare for the post-GDPR era?

At Matomy, we are committed to upholding and honoring our clients’ trust with their sensitive data; this is a top priority for us. We are doing everything in our power to make this process as seamless as we can for all our partners. In order to prepare for GDPR, Matomy has been working with an external advisor and is completing its General Data Protection Regulation-related work as a data processor. This includes mapping and assessment; analysis and implementation of procedures, agreements, guidelines, policies, and opt-out tools; the appointment of a DPO, etc.

What startups in the technology industry are you watching keenly right now?

Frankly, I am focused on Matomy’s core brands – Team Internet and Mobfox.

What marketing and sales automation tools and technologies do you currently use?

We have a small but kickass creative team building a lot of our content and systems in-house. That said, like many B2B companies, we rely on awesome marketing tools like MailChimp for our newsletters and automated email campaigns, Buffer for managing our social media activities and Mention to help us monitor and manage reputation.

Could you tell us about an outstanding digital campaign at Matomy? 

BeSoccer, an app providing real-time soccer results, nearly doubled revenue in Latin America simply by moving their inventory to auto-optimization on the Mobfox platform. 

How do you prepare for an AI-centric world as a business leader?

We invest heavily in machine learning and deep learning technologies to analyze the accumulated trillions of data-points without infringing on privacy. We are focusing on taming technology to create real business insights.

How do you inspire your people to work with technology?

I don’t have to…they are so tech savvy.

One word that best describes how you work.

Trust. I make sure I have good people on my team, so I don’t have to work too hard.

What apps/software/tools can’t you live without?

Email. Whatsapp. Navigation. Evernote.

What’s your smartest work-related shortcut or productivity hack?

I don’t use folders, I use tags – with the GTD (get things done) methodology.

What are you currently reading?

I like to read books on management – but I am between them at the moment. Instead, I am now doing a lot of online research, one article at a time.

What’s the best advice you’ve ever received?

My mentor, when I first became a tech CEO 20 years ago, told me: Sell more. Lower expenses.

I also defer to Steve Jobs’ advice to everyone in his 2005 address at Stanford: Stay hungry. Stay foolish.

Something you do better than others – the secret of your success?

Get shit done. Like no other.

Tag the one person in the industry whose answers to these questions you would love to read:

Jeff Bezos

Thank you, Liam! That was fun and hope to see you back on MarTech Series soon.

As the CEO of market-leading tech companies, Liam’s philosophy is to focus on ideas, strategy, and management, while leaving the details to people who are better at them. He loves innovation, new ideas, new concepts and new ways of doing things and surround himself with a top-notch team to ascertain execution.

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Matomy Media Group Ltd. (LSE: MTMY, TASE: MTMY.TA) is a global media company with a portfolio of superior data-driven platforms empowering advertising and media partners to meet their evolving growth-driven goals. Matomy’s programmatic platforms include Team Internet and the Mobfox SSP. Founded in 2007 with headquarters in Tel Aviv and seven offices around the world, Matomy is dual-listed on the London and Tel Aviv Stock Exchanges.

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The MTS Martech Interview Series is a fun Q&A style chat which we really enjoy doing with martech leaders. With inspiration from Lifehacker’s How I work interviews, the MarTech Series Interviews follows a two part format On Marketing Technology, and This Is How I Work. The format was chosen because when we decided to start an interview series with the biggest and brightest minds in martech – we wanted to get insight into two areas … one – their ideas on marketing tech and two – insights into the philosophy and methods that make these leaders tick.

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