Michael Kelley is the newly-appointed CMO of AdGenesis, a video advertising platform.
Please share a bit of background on yourself. Why is AdGenesis the right next step for you?
I have spent the better part of my 25 year career in marketing and building digital businesses including Hulu, AT&T's national advertising business and mycokerewards.com, among others. I have long studied consumers, their changing media habits and receptivity to new forms of advertising. Now that we have seen the economy adjust to what now is termed, "the new economy," I see the consumer altered forever with permanent value-driven buying habits. AdGenesis has all of the ingredients to be successful for marketers and users in this new economy play.
Why do you think consumers will be willing to share personal information on buying habits and watch ads in exchange for rewards? Isn't this adding friction to the consumer's online experience?
No, actually, I think it eases the current friction of display ads that are garnering far less ad revenue due to the tanking economy and the interruptive model of pre-rolls on videos. We put the consumer front and center and "thank" them for their time and attention. Our AdGenesis "engine" matches consumers to brands that are most likely to buy. We don't presume anything. We invite the consumer to answer a few questions about their interests, lifestyles, hobbies and current buying desires, then, we deliver branded content related to these interest. Consumers are then rewarded and thanked for watching the branded content with reward points as well as offers of savings, exclusive experiences and more that they can use immediately, save or share with their social networks. As a result, consumers will be willing to give up accumulating information about what they are planning to buy in exchange for increasingly relevant content and the significant appreciation program that doesn't exist today.
What problem is AdGenesis solving?
The major problem is that we are trying to apply old advertising models to new platforms and consumer mindsets forever altered by this "new economy." Consumer want ads they deem relevant not ones assumed to be relevant. They want to discover brands versus having them pushed on them and interrupting their experiences. Think of how annoying you find those long pods that break up the viewing of your favorite TV shows! Consumers also want to be rewarded for their attention and shown genuine appreciation for engaging with and buying brands. They are willing to give up information in return for something of value. At AdGenesis we are delivering "thank yous" from the first ad impression.
How do you know this formula is working?
Consumers seem to love picking the brands they will engage with. They love the rewards and visit our publishing partners to get them. They love to save and use offers with more than 20% click thru rates on average!
Why will AdGenesis and Beezag continue to work together?
AdGenesis is our private label video branded content engine that matches consumers to brands to consumers most likely to buy because they have opted in their current buying intent. Beezag is but just one consumer facing portal, among many others that we will partner with such as CotterWeb's InboxDollars.
Your platform has adopted a cost-per-view pricing methodology. Can you explain what this is and how it's better than other pricing models?
Let me explain the value of CPV vs. CPM in that CPM actually only works when someone has around 5 frequencies of the video. Add this to the fact that roughly 50 in 1,000 actually see the video, it makes the effective CPM ie the price for one person to have actually absorbed and paid attention makes it over $1,000 CPM or about $1 per effective view (bearing in mind 5 frequency and only 5% of users seeing it) .
To gain real value, we recommend brands enhance rewards from viewing the ad to offers they make at the end. Cost per "unique" view where brands control and compensate for the rewards allows them to dive much deeper than a CPM model, understand how many views they had, what type of consumer is viewing the ad, get real time feedback on their current buying mindset along with other data they can't get anywhere else, control the offers that accompany each ad to see the click-thru rates, conversion rates and establish an ongoing relationship with the consumer. Each facet of the experience is an option for advertisers. They can just do CPM or they can control and gain from the entire experience.
Some have said that brand marketers have viewed digital advertising as a DR game - and thus they have stayed away. Given this obstacle, what's your pitch to brands?
AdGenesis is "welcome response" (WR). DR is often "spray and pray" insidious. Or, it forces on the consumer an option when their mindset is nowhere near a buying one for the brand attempting DR. With WR, the consumers invite us in. They know by telling us something about their current buying intent, they will receive unique rewards and offers directly relevant to them. WR has much more value than DR and is one of the facets that we believe will change advertising as we know it.
When do you see IPTV finally achieving significant scale for brand marketers?
IPTV or as we like to call it "two way TV" is a perfect platform for both consumers and marketers. We see it dedicated to channels where consumers discover brands, receive rewards and save/share offers. Currently, we have several discussions happening on this front and expect scale in the next 12 to 24 months on a whole host of IPTV marketing activities.
A year from now, what milestones would you like AdGenesis to have accomplished?
Already we are reaching more than 100,000 consumers who are actively using the AdGenesis engine to discover, get rewarded and engage with brands that match to their current lifestyles, interests and hobbies. We expect to scale with very fast in terms of audience reach. In a year, we hope that we are an established part of the top advertisers' media buys as well as getting part of the consumer promotion dollars currently being used at point of sale.
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