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Archive for Predictions

Non-addressable is a “today” problem

Hero image for BlockThrough Podcast about non-addressable audiences

I sat down (virtually) with Neera Shanker from Blockthrough in December. We discussed a few market trends like non-addressable audiences, privacy regulation and the platform giants (Apple and Google).

In this episode, I actually know wtf I’m talking about. It’s only my second attempt at guesting on a podcast. And the first time I really had the appropriate expertise on a subject.

Here I’m talking about ad-tech and how non-addressable audiences (no cookie IDs and such) are an important area of focus. Many online publishers are not giving this topic enough attention. If that kinda thing is interesting to you, or you just like hearing the sound of my voice, give it a listen.

Tune in to learn about how I got started in ad tech waaaaaay back in 1997. The internet was a different place back then. It’s striking to remember how a small operation could have a large impact.

Then you’ll hear about my work at Yieldmo, my day job. Hint: I really like my job. In my best radio voice I talk about my typical day, challenges I’m helping to overcome, and how we measure success.

Finally, I evangelize the need for non-addressable solutions in the market. It’s a big issue that will require investment (time and money) in order to future-proof the industry.

If you’d like to grab the podcast in your favorite app, jump over to buzzsprout for the links.

Digital Advertising Predictions for 2015

The marketing department at Signal asked several people at the company to make digital advertising predictions for 2015. With their blessing, I’m publishing my predictions right here. I also added a couple of additional topics at the bottom.

Advertising Predictions - 2015

The Ecosystem

2015 will be a big year for IPOs and consolidation. Startups will form in nascent categories, but not so much in established ones. Luma will produce a new set of Lumascapes to accommodate the rise of new categories. This is hardly a shocking prediction.


Cross-channel will be the rule in 2015. Companies with a single channel solution will be the exception (and the Dodo).


We’ll see the rise of the Meta-DSP where Agency systems will be plugging into DSP stacks via APIs. Smarter systems will be able to segment users across DSP buying systems and regain control of Frequency and Reach.

Native advertising

Native Normalization: Native ads will begin to follow responsive design techniques. “Standardized Native Ads” will become the biggest oxymoron of 2015. Native ad specifications are already working their way into the OpenRTB API Specification. The road to standardization is very short from that point on. Read more

A small case for the iPhone nano

Apple has several sizes and shapes in their line of computers and iPods, but only one size and shape to their phone. Sure, you can get 3G or 3GS with a variety of storage onboard, but the device itself comes with the same processor, same graphics, same screen size, same camera, same ins and outs.

This same-ness has eased developer adoption to be sure. Having a single device to design for means there’s one stream of code, with some tinkering for backward compatibility. It’s also great for the accessory folks. A single physical shape means more consumers available per accessory.

There might be a problem with such a robust device running the iPhone OS. Folks who’ve purchased an iPad might not need the next iPhone. The iPad runs almost all the apps that the iPhone runs, and with the larger screen the apps are often far better. Owning an iPad means that users, like myself, could actually get by with a cheaper, run-of-the-mill mobile phone. Read more

Hewlett-Packard and Palm could be a contender

HPalm LogoYesterday HP announced that it was going to buy Palm for $1.2 billion (HPalm?). I think it’s a stroke of genius. The more I dig into this plan the better both companies look to benefit from it. There are a lot of hurdles to overcome, but if they can execute on some key opportunities they could be perfectly positioned to give Apple a run for the money. It’s not rocket science to see the potential here or to come up with even a modest plan to give them a good shot. Early indications are that HP will leverage sales and market reach to push Palm devices into the market. I hope that’s not the end of the plan. It might yield a quick buck but there’s so much more they can do.

HP can learn a lot from Palm. The Palm Pilot was as ubiquitous as the iPhone at one time. You kids might not remember this, but there was eventually something that looked like an App Store (see:, versions of the Palm eventually supported peripherals (see: Handspring) and there was even a phone version (see: Treo 600). Today it seems absurd that you’d have a mobile device that wasn’t a phone (or would you? iPad), but back in the late 90’s and early 00’s it was pretty normal. Today Palm sells only a couple of devices. The differentiating factor is whether or not it has a physical keyboard. It’s a perfect line-up, but without the marketing bucks to compete against the big Apple Palm was struggling. But they’ve got the right products: smartphones, and the right number of them: 2. Read more

Why the iPad will change the book business

iPad and CalculatorThe launch of the iPad heralded the end of the netbook, the Kindle and the nook. None of these things will come to pass due to the iPad, however. The netbook will survive because people like a keyboard and people like their windows applications. The Kindle and the nook may survive as well, they will be single purposes devices like the calculator that still sits on so many office desks. No, the iPad won’t kill these devices, nor will it destroy the physical book. But it might make a wide array of books unavailable in print form. The iPad can’t be blamed for this alone, but consider it the last horseman of the books apocalypse. The Kindle, the nook and even the Web itself were all whispering about the death of print media long before thoughts of the iPad were dancing in the minds of Apple fan boys.

Let’s not forget the stepping stones to bring book buying online. Certainly Amazon and everyone Amazon crushed will have their place in the history “books”. Their online marketplaces showed everyone how to sell books on the web with reviews, technical details and even book previews that whet the appetites of rabid readers. And while Amazon sits in an interesting position having its own e-reader and a well established store, it couldn’t quite commit, or get the market to commit, to an entire catalog of all-digital books with no paper copies shipping. The Kindle, while great for novels, wasn’t a device for all types of books and without that versatility it can’t eliminate the need to publish books on paper and send them through the market to the consumer. Read more