For digital advertising firm Media Tradecraft, placing an online ad company in the midst of the NoVa data center corridor is a combo as natural as peanut butter and jelly.
“This area is really rich in technology, it’s rich in data, it’s rich in what are the core things that are needed to really take our industry to the next level,” cofounder and COO Justin Hansen told Technical.ly.
The Reston, Virginia firm, which was founded in 2019, specializes in digital advertising services for media and publishing companies. According to Hansen and fellow cofounder Erik Requidan, the 11-person company has seen 925% revenue growth year-over-year since its inception, and only plans for more.
Requidan, the firm’s CEO, told Technical.ly that even in the two years that Tradecraft has been around, there have been huge changes to the advertising industry. What used to be based on how much companies were charging for ads 10 years ago, he said, now requires a more customizable approach based on the right data.
“It boils down to a lot of stuff like…how’s your ad technology set up? Do you bring the right data science practice to it where you understand context, analytics, revenue, analytics?” Requidan said.
The wealth of data available, though, leaves many companies with information that leaders aren’t sure what to do with. Requidan and Hansen noted that firms frequently have to move back and forth between agencies, advertisers and other middlemen, which can make it difficult to prioritize and find the most useful data.
But Requidan, who compared the custom approach of digital advertising to all the options now available in air travel like seat classes and legroom, noted that it’s still important to maintain a human factor. Part of what’s necessary is reigning in all of the chaos and making sure the company’s story and primary audience are still at the forefront.
“As much as everybody has all these cool pitch decks and these algorithms and all these things, at the end of the day, it’s human strategy in how you do it,” Requidan said. “And so really a big part of what we do is we help sites take back control of their strategy and how they do things.”
The world of digital advertising, Hansen noted, changes so frequently that it’s important to make sure companies are constantly shifting strategies, or risk getting left behind.
“The third-party cookie allowed automation and allowed all the buys to seamlessly happen,” Hansen said. “When that goes away, you have to then get gritty, get custom and figure out all these other solutions and do it for your specific site. There’s not one transaction value anymore.”
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