My Startup: Admix
Admix is a platform that enables creators to place 2D and 3D ads in their extended reality environments, for example, in AR and VR games.
The platform works with game engine Unity and means that creators are able to offer the placements as inventory to be bought by advertisers programmatically.
The startup aims to "empower developers to be successful and build killers apps while creating a better future for advertising."
Founder: Sam Huber
We spoke to Sam to find out more about Admix...
Why did you start Admix?
From 2013 to 2016, I ran a game studio where we built multiple titles, ranging from our own IP to client projects. One of them, RogueTrader, got featured at CES 2014 and later got acquired. During these years, I learnt a lot about the challenges of monetizing my own content, trying over 20 solutions, from simple banners to pre-rolls or rewarded ads. I grew frustrated about the lack of control of these solutions from a creative point of view.
When I used VR for the first time, I was blown away by the creative opportunities that this medium will bring, and for the first time, the ability to merge advertising with the creative process. I’ve always hated intrusive, attention-grabbing advertising and imagined the future of 3D content where product placements and eCommerce become one, fully integrated with the story.
Spatial computing (VR, AR, XR) is the first medium where this vision is truly possible, and that’s what Admix aims to do: empower developers to be successful and build killers apps while creating a better future for advertising.
Tell us more about the company?
Admix is a monetization solution aimed at enabling XR, games or e-sport developers to generate revenue from their content. The software development kit (SDK) integrates with game engines like Unity and enables developers to identify areas they want to monetize: a banner on a billboard, video playing on a jumbotron, or even a 3D product.
We then sell this unique inventory programmatically to thousands of advertisers, who can seamlessly place their brands within new environments and reach a new audience. Being programmatically connected to various ad platforms, we are able to guarantee instant and continuous revenue for our creators, as opposed to the one-off agency model that our competitors use.
At the end of the day, creators want a regular and steady flow of income above all else, and that is what Admix strives to provide.
What exciting events have happened recently?
At the end of last year, we launched our programmatic marketplace with Verizon Media, and ran campaigns for clients like National Geographic, Uber, and Universal. Since January, we have had over 200 brands buying from us, which shows that the market is starting to understand the benefit of advertising in this emerging media. During the same period, we have had over 100 SDK installs and our available impressions have grown by 150 times.
On the product side, we have just launched 3D ads – the ability to serve actual product placements users can interact with, instead of simple banners and videos, and a studio for brands and agencies to build these ads.
What are your aims for the next year?
Next year will be a pivotal year for Admix. We aim to raise our Series A funding and expand internationally. We also want to keep growing our community of creators (already one of the largest in the world with VRFocus and VR/AR Pioneers) and establish Admix as the true market leader for spatial computing creators.
What’s been the hardest thing about getting Admix off the ground?
When I started explaining the idea back in 2016, even before I formed the company, brands and advertisers were not receptive to it at all. They knew that VR/AR was likely to be the future, but the timeline was unclear and there was no urgency to act. 360-degree videos and custom experiences were all advertisers knew...
Therefore, we had to do a lot of education until we could prove the model with a couple of key clients. Eventually, more brands and ad platforms understood that VR/AR wasn’t just a cool gimmick, but the foundation of the transition from 2D to 3D content. Fast forward to today, education is still needed, but most companies know that VR/AR is a new computing platform and are already paying attention to it, so it is great to see how much the conversation has evolved and that we were on the right track.
Why should more people be using Admix?
Over 100,000 developers are now currently creating for VR and AR. With the new Oculus Quest, launched May 2019, and the promise of affordable AR headsets being widely available in 2020, the market is at inflection point. Within the next decade, 95% of millennial and Gen Z consumers will access XR content daily. This offers advertisers a huge opportunity to reach audiences in the new environments they are inhabiting and in new and exciting ways.
How much will it cost customers? and why is it worth it?
Through the Admix platform, advertising is bought programmatically and is charged on a CPM basis similarly to other digital media making it easy for media planners to integrate with other paid media activity within their strategies.