Scott Knoll was named CEO of Integral Ad Science five years ago, when ad verification mostly served to ameliorate brand safety concerns. Then the twin terrors of fraud and viewability came along and recast the programmatic marketplace in terms of quality.
In this new reality, IAS and brethren like Moat were well positioned to help brands understand which ads were seen and for how long.
In this episode of AdExchanger Talks, Knoll suggests this ability to track duration of exposure across media placements represents a new direction for the company.
"We know which consumers viewed ads and how long they viewed ads for," he said. "And if we are attached to the end result [such as] an offline sale, we can start tying length of exposure to result. Typically we're the only ones who know this and we see everywhere an ad is served."
In other words, IAS has an opportunity to evolve its straightforward measurement approach into a more holistic attribution and optimization approach.
Asked about financials, Knoll notes IAS is profitable and will do more than $100 million in software-based revenue 2016 – metrics that could make it a solid IPO contender. Will it join the tiny ranks of hot ad tech stocks in 2017 (a group that arguably includes only The Trade Desk and Criteo)?
"Certainly it's something we're considering," he said. "We're putting in place the right people. Whether we go public or not, we're focusing on being a company that could."
Also in this wide-ranging discussion: the state of fraud detection, the small club of certified viewability vendors and Knoll's answer to a common buy-side gripe.