Most professionals holding media jobs in mobile advertising agencies like to keep an eye on any straws in the wind in their corner of Adland; and one rather large straw – ad-independent ad server OpenX – has just taken a significant step to beef up its mobile-facing operations.
Keeping up with the mobile stampede
OpenX was founded in 2008 and now has offices in New York, London, Tokyo and Munich, as well as its original hometown of Pasadena, LA. When a company like this decides to hire four mobile executives one after the other, which OpenX did over the last couple of months, it’s a fair bet that it’s gearing up to capitalize on the growing potential of mobile advertising.
This week, the company announced the names of its newest mobile-dedicated recruits. Rob Kramer becomes VP of Engineering, Martin Price becomes Senior Director of Product, Jin Yu becomes Chief Architect and Laura Buchman becomes VP of Publisher Solutions. All four roles have been newly created, so our earlier bet seems a safe one.
The company’s President, John Gentry, told AdAge:
“The mobile advertising market is still nascent, but the opportunity it presents is immense. We’re excited to welcome these talented individuals to help us achieve our multiscreen monetization vision.”
The future is mobile
But this is just the beginning of the company’s move toward the mobile advertising space: it’s planning to double its 30-strong mobile-dedicated team to 60, with the emphasis on three main areas — supporting its in-app capabilities, expanding its cross screen data and analytics capacities, and developing its mobile and video rich offerings.
Veterans who’ve held media jobs on the industry for any length of time will know that there’s a big challenge ahead. Desktop CPMs dwarf the mobile equivalent and Gentry is all too aware that, while the consumers are already embracing mobile big-time, the ad dollars haven’t yet followed them at the same pace.
But Gentry is no defeatist: leaving mobile alone simply isn’t an option, he said, because across the industry, there’s unanimity that mobile is the future. He went on:
“The fact that consumers are going to consume all their content across a variety of screens is inevitable, so to build a business and chart a path that ignores that future inevitability would be a really unfortunate decision.”