DTC Holiday Advertising Hack=Digital in the Real World

DTC Holiday Advertising Hack=Digital in the Real World

DTC Holiday Advertising Hack=Digital in the Real World

David Weinfeld, Co-Founder & CEO at Screenverse

To try to get into the mindset of a DTC brand marketer heading into the holidays, I scrolled through Instagram, over the course of a few days, and wrote down every unique DTC advertiser that I encountered. I captured a list of nearly 1,000 DTC companies.

From fitness equipment to vegan snacks, furniture, shelf-top appliances, gift boxes for the holidays and everything in between, I have come to realize how difficult it is to run marketing for a DTC brand today. Advertising on social media platforms like Instagram and Facebook feels like a zero sum game. There are so many different DTC companies competing for a finite and fleeting amount of attention. With such enormous demand, there’s no surprise that Facebook ad prices are increasing exponentially.

On the battlefield of attention, if every DTC brand is using the same megaphone, how can a company possibly stand out?

The answer has to be for DTC brands to reach their target audiences in the real world. I’m not advocating for DTC brands to suddenly eliminate their Facebook and Instagram ad spending. I believe that  augmenting social ads with digital video in the real world will make a brand’s Instagram ads that much more effective.

While DTC brands have historically used out-of-home for massive subway dominations and Times Square takeovers, I believe the greatest opportunities for these companies to stand out are in place-based digital video networks. Location and environment provide incredible context to advertise a DTC brand.

Take a digital network like theBulletin that places screens in luxury apartment buildings and high-rises in major cities. These screens are the ideal canvas for DTC brands to enhance their marketing across every other channel. Digital in the real world is a tool to exponentially grow a DTC brand’s megaphone.

Why not break out of the mold of the standard DTC marketing blueprint and carve a path that is cost-efficient, scalable, and complementary to every other digital advertising channel? Advertising where consumers live is the exact place in which a DTC brand needs to command mind share. It’s most often where a DTC product is purchased, delivered and consumed.

Reaching consumers in the physical world is something that every DTC brand should make a consistent part of their media mix. For the smart DTC companies that do, they will be the ones that shift the battlefield of attention in their favor.

New Screenverse Hire Brings Top Talent Into OOH Industry

New Screenverse Hire Brings Top Talent Into OOH Industry

New Screenverse Hire Brings Top Talent Into OOH Industry

OOH Today

Screenverse Hires Susan Jaget to lead West Coast Sales

Screenverse is pleased to announce the addition of Susan Jaget to lead west coast sales. Susan comes to us amid an impressive career developing digital advertising sales businesses within technology startups.

She has more than two decades of advertising sales experience that includes 8 years launching and building MySpace. After her tenure at MySpace, she continued working with early-stage start-ups, helping to launch sales for Mahalo, a company that was run by Jason Calacanis and a founding team including Elon Musk and Roelof Botha. Other companies she has launched West Coast sales for include BigLeadSports, Van Wagner Digital and Unruly Media.

She believes that digital OOH and programmatic digital OOH represents a new frontier and that the time is right to join Screenverse and bring this powerful media to mainstream brands and agencies. She brings a large roster of clients and relationships to Screenverse.

We couldn’t be more excited to invest in Susan and have her invest in us. The only way to evolve this business and this industry is to bring in incredibly talented people with experience building new things and establishing new markets.

To caricature the great Michael Scott:
“It doesn’t make sense to hire smart people and tell them what to do; we hire smart people so they can tell us what to do. – Steve Jobs” – Adam Malone

Screenverse Acquires The Danaher Group – Now The Exclusive Sales Partner For TouchTunes

Screenverse Acquires The Danaher Group – Now The Exclusive Sales Partner For TouchTunes

Screenverse Acquires The Danaher Group – Now The Exclusive Sales Partner For TouchTunes

OOH Today

Screenverse is proud to announce the acquisition of The Danaher Group, becoming the exclusive sales partner for TouchTunes

New York, NY, — Screenverse, an emerging startup delivering ad management and monetization to digital screen networks, has acquired The Danaher Group. This acquisition makes Screenverse one of the largest digital OOH sales companies in the US, with exclusive sales representation of 50,000+ screens and 2.5 billion monthly impressions.

The Danaher Group was led by world-class media veterans Susan Danaher (former Pres. DPAA, EVP Viacom, CRO Adspace/Lightbox) and Victor Germain (VP Screenvision, SVP, Gast Station TV). Susan, Victor, and Taylor Chiulli have joined Screenverse in sales, research, and operations leadership positions.

David Weinfeld, CEO of Screenverse, is proud of the milestones reached so far but hopes to keep his team focused on the future.

“Adam and I know that the key pillars of our business are to invest our energies in great people and great networks. In acquiring The Danaher Group, we get both in an enormous way. Susan, Victor, and Taylor embody our vision and mission and have already helped us leap past our 2020 sales and revenues in the first half of 2021. We have big ambitions for the rest of 2021 and beyond.”

Central to its growth outlook, Screenverse became the exclusive sales partner for TouchTunes – the nation’s largest Bar & Restaurant network and one of the largest DOOH networks in the world.

Adam Malone, Pres. of Screenverse, thinks “this represents a major step forward in the business. TouchTunes is one of the largest and most significant digital place-based networks in the world, by number of screens (40,000) and total impressions (1.4 Billion/Month). At a time when the world is opening back up again, we are incredibly optimistic about the bar and restaurant sector. With a ‘Roaring 20’s’ like Summer upon us, TouchTunes is strongly positioned to reach a Gen Z and Millennial audience when they are out in the world having fun and spending money!”

Victor Germain, SVP of Sales at Screenverse, sees the impact of “the roaring 20s” on the TouchTunes business. “People are ready to be out. They are ready to see their friends. We see it in our first party data and in our daily lives. BevAl companies are back spending, and we are seeing huge interest from other age-gated categories such as tobacco, cannabis, and gambling. That’s certainly not all, as advertisers in banking, travel & tourism, entertainment and fashion are leaning back in to reach a millennial audience within our high dwell time environments.”

The TouchTunes network will be available via the leading SSPs; Vistar, PlaceExchange and Magnite. We are commissioning on-premise research for the Beverage and Alcohol market from Nielsen CGA and other providers.

Our Future is Not Guaranteed

Our Future is Not Guaranteed

Our Future is Not Guaranteed

Adam Malone, Co-Founder & President at Screenverse

Anna Bager gave an opening address to the 2021 OAAA/Geopath conference in which she detailed the state of the OOH Media marketplace.  The theme of the conference is “Future Proof” and her prognostication is that we are in for a “roaring 20’s” and another “golden age of advertising”.  “OOH will be there” as the world wakes up, as friends, families, and fans “reconnect” with each-other and their favorite pastimes.  “OOH is the backdrop for in-person, outdoor, reconnection”.

Anyone who didn’t just emerge from a 17 year slumber can tell you that this optimism stands in stark contrast to the last 15 months of our collective experience.  We just experienced the industry’s most challenging year in a century.  Revenues were down 1/3 across the board.  Whole swaths of inventory rendered dormant.  People were furloughed, fired, and freaked out en masse.

One would be tempted to, in Anna’s position, chalk 2020 up to a black swan event and move on as if it never happened.  Or, at least, pine for the good old days where we could tout several thousand (or so it seems) consecutive quarters of industry growth.  Back when OOH was great.  Maybe we can make OOH great again?!

This message is for OOH specialists and, to a lesser extent, media owners.  2020 proved yet again that necessity is the mother of invention.  We had to reinvent ourselves constantly in order to survive, and as Anna said, many of us rose to the occasion and delivered some of our best work.

We rethought old business models.  Embraced technology and data to target and account for every dollar.  We insisted on fresh impressions data and followed audiences as patterns changed daily.  We brought creative ideas to our clients — from digital screens in essential retail to pizza boxes, hand sanitizer, and PPE.  We hustled to find solutions to account for lost revenues.  We thought laterally.  As Scott Wells noted yesterday, we built out new verticals such as meal delivery, DTC, and community health and learned how to sell into them.  We had fire in our bellies and a willingness to fight for what we could get.

One of the things that’s always been a hallmark of OOH is that we are an industry of tight knit relationships.  We’ll look back on 2020 for years to come and remember clearly who took your phone calls, worked extra hard to extend the brief and sell through your idea.  And the agency folks who were trying to squeeze every available impression out of ever shrinking budgets will not forget the free media, the deep discounts, and the quick turnarounds from their media partners.

As we look forward to “re-opening, recovery, reconnection, rebirth”… please don’t revert back to the thinking, planning, and campaigns of yesteryear.

Anna Bager’s most poignant lesson for all of us yesterday was to “keep pushing.  The future is never guaranteed.”

Keep pushing.  The future is never guaranteed.

An agency leader I spoke with a few weeks ago told me he’s concerned with his team.  “All of our plans are starting to look the same, again.”  The creative fire that kept us alive in the hardest year of our professional lives is at risk of burning out.  Are we supposed to be done with the skill-building, the pushing and striving and leveling up because highway traffic is jamming again?  Because subway ridership is trending up and Times Square is packed?

How many Trade Desk Certifications were posted to Linkedin in December and are now collecting dust?

Don’t revert back to the same old same old.  I promise it will not work this time.

Follow audiences.  Insist on real-time data and impressions figures.  Lean in to digital place based media.  The tools, data, and technology that deliver real audiences in the real world.  Lean in to media that might never end up on Instagram but will drive real results for your clients.

Anna told us yesterday that  “future proof is not just about planning for worst case scenarios.  It is imagining best case new scenarios”.  Let’s imagine them.  Let’s build them.  And let’s do it with the same intensity and focus as we did when we had no other choice.

Chicago’s TheBulletin Building Millennial-Centric Ad Network In Upscale Residential Blocks

Chicago’s TheBulletin Building Millennial-Centric Ad Network In Upscale Residential Blocks

Chicago’s TheBulletin Building Millennial-Centric Ad Network In Upscale Residential Blocks

Sixteen:Nine

A Chicago start-up is using plain old TVs as digital bulletin boards in upscale residential blocks as a targeted digital OOH advertising medium, with some 500 screens in a handful of U.S. cities and a sales deal with another start-up, New York-based Screenverse.

Screenverse will manage all direct and programmatic sales across TheBulletin.io residential DOOH network.

Run by former algorithmic trader Aditya Ramani and agency veteran Thomas Schneider, TheBulletin.io makes the service free to building operators – with apps that run off smart TVs or HDMI streaming devices like the Amazon FireStick.

It’s not clear to me if the buildings get a percentage of the advertising revenue, which is a model that’s been around for decades, or if this is positioned as a free service that creates an amenity in the lobby or common area for tenants. I THINK the buildings have the ability to use the screens for announcements.

The screens show national, local and hyperlocal neighbourhood ads. Advertisers can cherry-pick locations and times or block-buy time across neighbourhoods, cities or the network. The network’s main footprint is Chicago, but TheBulletin is also in New York City, Washington DC, Boston, and Atlanta

The ad side is managed by Screenverse, a new DOOH service run by a couple of familiar digital signage/digital OOH veterans: David Weinfeld and Adam Malone.

Screenverse is managing and monetizing digital displays in several major cities, in essential retail, bars and restaurants, and office buildings. It has deals with nine networks, covering about 50,000 screens.

Part of the pitch is that Screenverse also sells ads for a recently launched office network, so TheBulletin.io gives advertisers the opportunity to reach young professionals seven days a week where they live, work, and play. Whether people continue to work from home, return to the office, or adopt a hybrid model of the two, marrying TheBulletin’s growing network with Screenverse’s national DOOH footprint enables advertisers to reach real people and real places, while delivering real results.

“The first thing we look for is whether a screen network is delivering value to its venue partners and audiences,” says Weinfeld, CEO of Screenverse. “We then look for whether there is a team in place that can manage the technical and strategic challenges that arise from standing up and then growing a national network. As we have gotten to know Adi and Thomas, we are convinced that they are world-class entrepreneurs and we believe that, together, we can build a world class media network.”

I was aware Screenverse was out there but was assuming this was another programmatic play, given that both Weinfeld and Malone are coming from that world.

But Screenverse is not just a platform for buying and selling. The company does media sales, advertising operations (like scheduling the ads and reporting), AND provides technical expertise “to own the end-to-end monetization of digital screens in the physical world.”