My Startup: VIOOH
VIOOH is a new independent platform for buying out of home advertising programmatically. The company provide an open, independent and global marketplace for out of home.
By combining data and technology to enable brand safe and measurable advertising, VIOOH connects brands to the right audience, all with full transparency.
Founder: Jean-Christophe (JC) Conti
We spoke to JC to find out more.
Why did you start VIOOH?
I have spent most of my career in the technology and advertising field, both of which are changing at a great pace.
But the most fascinating industry at the moment is out of home and its future is incredibly exciting. Indeed, digital out of home (DOOH) is the second-fastest growing media behind mobile, with WARC expecting that global spending on DOOH will experience double digit growth each year between 2018 and 2021. And yet, DOOH is still a relatively new channel with plenty of opportunities to innovate and drive growth, especially with the help of new technology and data capabilities.
I joined VIOOH as CEO pre-launch to shape and deliver on the vision. VIOOH represents an exciting turning point for the industry, bringing together technology, data and audiences onto a single platform. And by making media owner inventory more accessible and addressable to media buyers, VIOOH will help grow DOOH in markets globally. It is also an exciting time for the OOH media owners to work together to really make a change in the industry.
Tell us more about the tech behind the product?
VIOOH is a full-stack platform including automation, exchange, and dynamic content execution. All of which is underpinned by data and analysis.
All the data integrated into the platform gives contextualised insight into the audiences at each site, down to the hour, as well as screen information including size and location. Our platform uses the data to build the best campaign solution to help drive greater business outcomes.
The platform’s allocation engine is media owner agnostic and determines the best screens available to reach the selected audience, down to the number of plays per screen, per hour. Media buyers can simply select their audience, campaign dates and budget and let the platform create the best solution to reach this audience more effectively.
Our API enables end to end automated trading from campaign planning through to booking and buying a campaign, through either VIOOH’s dashboard or media buyer planning tools.
Where are you at right now?
We have a team of 65 developers, coders, commercial and support staff who are working tirelessly on building out our technology and bringing on board media owners, technology partners, agencies and brands. So far this year we have already announced the appointment of Natalia Escribano from Facebook as Chief Commercial Officer.
What are your aims for the next year?
This year we will be focusing on expanding into the European and US markets, with APAC next on the roadmap.
We will also be working closely with digital agencies so they can understand how they can make the most of DOOH. Excitingly, we’ve just announced that programmatic specialist, Regital, has become a strategic partner.
Simultaneously we are in discussions with other media owners globally, who are looking to join the platform.
What's been the hardest thing about getting VIOOH off the ground?
OOH is possibly the last of the marketing channels to become automated and therefore it has been necessary to break down some of the ingrained traditional methods of how it has been bought and sold. This means that we’ve had to demonstrate the benefits of programmatic trading to both the media owners and sell side who have been more used to doing deals manually rather than via a platform.
Similarly, OOH is a very siloed industry and to thrive in a balanced ecosystem alongside the digital giants like Google, we are needing to encourage media owners to work together to really change and improve OOH.
Why should more people be investing/using the software?
For buyers, automation and programmatic trading allows for faster planning and trading and more accurate and efficient reporting, ensuring OOH is more addressable and accessible. The premium inventory is brand safe, GDPR compliant, bot free, fraud free and location specific. There is not as much emphasis on prior knowledge of OOH and its formats, the platform allows planners to input target audiences and VIOOH will create the best possible solution, down to the hour and execute it.
And when bought through their DSPs, media buyers will be able to trade DOOH using the same data as other digital channels, enabling a more unified marketing strategy.
For sellers, the platform will make their DOOH inventory more accessible and attractive to new advertisers and agencies, enabling data-driven media buying to help drive revenue, and programmatic trading in real-time. They will also have greater control as the platform allows for media owners to create a variety of rules to be set.
How much will it cost users? - and why is it worth the investment?
First and foremost, it is important to us that we are transparent with the market. At no time are the media buyers charged for using the platform.
Media owners that operate with a SaaS model will be charged a competitive usage fee based on percentage of revenue, whilst for transactions via VIOOH Exchange there is a similar fee based on transaction value. In both cases the larger the volume, the lower the percentage.
Why it’s worth the investment? In short, for media buyers, it makes OOH more addressable and accessible. For sellers, it makes their DOOH inventory more accessible and attractive to advertisers and agencies.