TechBytes with Jeremy Pinkham, CTO, Lotame

Jeremy Pinkham

Jeremy Pinkham
CTO, Lotame

Lotame recently announced their partnership with a leading Automated Content Recognition (ACR) data company, Inscape. The objective of this partnership is to deliver advanced television planning, targeting and measurement through Lotame’s aiTV: Platform. To understand the core tenets of Lotame’s DMP, Audience Optimizer, and the concept of ‘pre-enriched data‘, we spoke to Lotame’s Chief Technology Officer, Jeremy Pinkham.

Tell us about your role at Lotame and the team you handle.

At Lotame, my team and I are focused on building, deploying and maintaining the core technologies that power both our data management platform (DMP) and our data exchange (LDX). At the end of the day, Lotame’s mission is to enable companies — whether they are an advertiser, agency or a publisher — to use data to build stronger connections with their consumers and audiences. My team makes this possible technologically and ensures that we can achieve this mission every single day.

Is customer data the new ‘digital business currency’?

Definitely. Data is the new currency for our industry. In the world of digital advertising and programmatic, data has grown exponentially in both volume and importance. The use of large datasets in predicting outcomes, understanding audiences and breaking down media silos is more widespread now than ever before. We have entered an era of data-driven marketing campaigns focused on audience engagement and one-to-one brand experiences.

At the heart of this revolution is data, yes. But we are there, too. This is what excites me about our company. Data is meaningless without a DMP to collect, manage and activate it. DMPs gives clients the ability to centralize and manage their customers’ databases, analyze their marketing efforts, inform content management systems, and power advertising platforms. This is an exciting time for Lotame, which can be the ultimate guide for our clients in this new data-powered era.

How do you meet customer expectations when it comes to providing access to audience segments?

It comes down to data and technology flexibility, which we can provide clients because we are independent. Keep in mind — we are the largest independent DMP business in the world. Not being part of a marketing cloud or large conglomerate affords us the ability to be laser-focused on data and the value it brings our clients. We know that our independence is a benefit to them, as it enables our solutions to be agile and flexible. So, our DMP enables you to collect first-party data from any source — including websites, apps, social, email, CRM, search, campaign data, and beyond — for one holistic view of your consumers.

Of course, this flexibility extends beyond collection into audience segmentation. You can use this data to create audience segments inside the DMP, by selecting the specific demographics, interests and actions you want to target against. Or, you can learn more about your consumers with insights gleaned from our global third-party data exchange. And cutting-edge analytics tools built into our DMP enable you to uncover new insights into both the audience segments you create and the people who engage with your campaigns or content. But, again, this all comes from being an independent provider, first and foremost.

What are the core tenets of Lotame’s Audience Optimizer?

When you run any campaign, there are KPIs you are likely watching closely and use as a measurement of campaign success. Common KPIs are clicks on ads, the CTR, conversions or purchases, the CVR, or the CPA. Your campaigns may be performing well and may even surpass thresholds you or your advertiser have established — but there is always room for improvement and further cost savings.

This is where Audience Optimizer comes in. Audience Optimizer is our modeling solution that allows marketers to create powerful look-alike and act-alike audiences using first-party data sets. It analyzes the behavioral attributes of a user’s profile to determine which attributes are most likely to predict a user’s actions. By understanding the user’s past engagements, Audience Optimizer performs pattern-matching to locate new profiles. While other types of campaign optimization, like creative optimization, inventory optimization, and bid optimization, can improve campaign performance by finding new creative iterations or inventory sources for a broad campaign, Audience Optimizer locates new profiles most likely to perform your desired campaign KPI, whether a click, conversion, or some other type of engagement.

Tell us about the concept of ‘pre-enriched data’?

Pre-enriched data is what we at Lotame typically call “Audience Enrichment.” Audience enrichment is a way to further enhance the data you have already collected about your current audience. Audience data is information about the people who respond to your your business’s products, visit your site, or use your app — these are the audience segments you will want to target during future marketing campaigns. Audience enrichment works by taking your first-party business data, like the data you gathered on people visiting your website and media properties and enriching that information with third-party data such as data gathered on other websites, apps, and platforms.

At Lotame, we provide pre-enriched data like this through the Lotame Data Exchange (LDX), which is the largest in the world today. The LDX has thousands of “pre-enriched” high-quality audience profiles available to marketers, that reflect advanced demographics, and interest- and intent-based data.

How do you see Data Management Platforms evolving around customer data for better intent insights?

Data Management platforms such as Lotame have evolved to include support for data sets from a multitude of platforms, from cookies to mobile devices to televison viewership, but the future of DMPs is in creating automated and intelligent ways of using that data with less and less hands on human interaction. Whether that be proactive analytics, audience optimization, or simply driving more efficient marketing on all sides of the ecosystems; intelligent and automatic applications of the vast data sets are where things are ramping up. Intent insights are an obvious area to apply these techniques because there is a lot of value, and a lot of noise to sift through to find the valuable signals.

How does Lotame improve data portability and drive customization across multiple marketing channels?

A DMP sits at the center of the advertising ecosystem. It gives you audience insights and analysis of your audience, your campaign performance, and the value of your content. And yet, without a way to deliver the data to other platforms that can serve the ads and match the data to a desired performance action – it’s all kind of a wasted effort.

That’s why we support integrations with all major advertising and marketing vendors and platforms. Again, this is where our independence comes into play. It gives you the freedom to decide where and how to activate your data. Our data is available in every major DSP and exchange, including Google, AppNexus, The Trade Desk, Turn, TubeMogul, Videology, Tremor Media, Yahoo, DataXu, and more. We have also built server-to-server (S2S) and API integrations with these platforms to help ensure that you can actually do amazing things with your data.

We have worked from day one to give customers maximum data portability – so their data goes wherever they are. At the end of the day, it is your data. You have the right to control it, share it and use it how you see fit. I am proud to have built technology that enables that. On the flip side, DMPs connected to larger marketing clouds have more restrictions on what you can and cannot do with your own data. It is absurd.

How critical is it for modern businesses to leverage AI and machine learning capabilities for better data and analytic management?

As the data explosion continues, AI and machine learning will be an absolute requirement for anyone that wants to make sense of data and put it into action. The volume and velocity in which it is collected and stored today, is impossible to navigate and manage without intelligent algorithms supporting on the back-end. As a DMP vendor, we have led our category in the area of AI and machine learning technology and will be incorporating more of this technology into future updates, features, and services. AI and machine learning is poised to fundamentally shape how data marketing will be used in the future. It will extend beyond targeting into quality and attribution.

Thanks for chatting with us, Jeremy.
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Also Read: TechBytes with Omar Abdala, Chief Scientist, Lotame