It’s no secret to pros with media jobs in mobile advertising agencies that success frequently hinges on good analytics as much as it relies on creative talent. And one of New York’s newest residents, SoHo-based mobile advertising startup Decisive, is on a mission to become the E‑Trade for mobile ads. Launched last month, its platform lets businesses set up mobile advertising campaigns and then watch the results in real-time.
Bidding down to the second
Co-founder and CEO David Dundas said that he and his team at Decisive “wanted to automate the creation of campaigns for our clients.” He added, “You can see how well your campaign is running down to the second.”
Clients get to have a whole lot more control: the platform lets them set up bids for the specific audiences they want to reach on mobile devices (they’re chosen from anonymous data, like New York iPhone users who visit sites like TMZ.com).
The marketing world is shifting toward programmatic advertising that’s been activated by the actions of the intended audience, Dundas explained, like visiting a website or opening an app. For example, as soon as an app is opened, it sends a small packet of data to companies like Decisive which puts it to work in digital auctions (real-time bidding) that take place within fractions of a second. This lets marketers get their mobile advertising efforts before the eyes of the people they want to reach at exactly the right moments.
Climbing a growth curve
Early adopters of the platform are predominantly smaller businesses who need to keep a careful eye on their ROI for mobile advertising campaigns. Decisive shows them how their ad dollars work in real-time, and Dundas believes this has the potential to attract bigger brand names, too, who may want to spend more of their dollars on the kind of targeted campaigns the start-up’s platform offers.
Dundas and his team spent the bulk of 2013 developing the location-based Decisive platform after their research told them that clients didn’t just want to retain existing customers, they wanted to reach new ones too. They gradually pulled together a roster of 75 clients, and Dundas says that he and his fellow co-founder Ryan Witt (the startup’s CTO) are aiming to be sustainable:
“Today we’re profitable and we’re growing our revenue.”