Panel discussion at OMMA Programmatic –  Can Robots Fix Programmatic Creative?

Thunder CEO Victor Wong had the pleasure of sitting in on a panel about programmatic creative at this year’s OMMA Programmatic event.

“Less than 1/3rd of online users today feel that internet advertising is relevant to them.

“Through programmatic creative and using data, if we can bring that up to 50%, that’s going to lead to hugely impactful outcomes for our clients and hopefully cut down on ad blocking and improve the way people perceive advertising in the future,” said Andrew Sandoval, Director, Biddable Media at The Media Kitchen in an opening statement.

Watch the video recording:

Below is a summary version of the main takeaways from the talk.

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Fireside Chat with Wells Fargo on Customer-Centric Marketing

At a recent insider marketing event in Palo Alto, Thunder CEO Victor Wong sat down with Dane Hulquist, ‎SVP, Head of Media and Retail Channels at Wells Fargo, to talk about customer-centric marketing.

A key focus of the talk was how brands with multiple products often times end up competing as they overlap in targeting a customer, bid against themselves, and create inefficiencies. The interview below has been edited and condensed for clarity.

Hulquist spoke about Wells Fargo’s high-level cultural and strategic shift which was a move toward centralization to eliminate internal competition and focus on company goals.

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Thunder Taps Industry Veteran as Sales Director

Former Rocket Fuel Director John Huffman to Support Leading Programmatic Creative Company’s Expansion

San Francisco, CA – (May 22, 2017) – Thunder, the original and leading Creative Management Platform (CMP), has appointed seasoned digital advertising sales executive John Huffman as Sales Director. In his new role, Huffman will be based in Dallas, covering Texas and surrounding states in response to strong market demand for Thunder’s innovative solutions.

Huffman brings over 20 years of experience in digital media sales, maximizing revenue and margin growth for major players in the space, including Adobe, Quantcast, Rocket Fuel and Yahoo!. At Adobe, he grew his business sector from zero clients to over $4 million in revenue within 18 months. During his eight years at Yahoo!, he beat his quota 18 consecutive quarters and was consistently one of the top 5 revenue performers at the company — leading one customer to spend more than $44 million annually.

“I was immediately impressed with Thunder’s offering,” said Huffman. “The company is at the forefront of programmatic creative technology, offering incredible revenue building opportunities for advertisers and agencies. Today’s marketers need a fast, scalable way to cut through the noise and reach consumers with highly personalized messages across channels. Thunder is enabling them to do that in a way that’s never been possible before.”

“We are thrilled to have John on board,” said Victor Wong, CEO of Thunder. “John’s deep data expertise, long-standing industry relationships and proven track record of expanding territories and increasing revenue will be immensely valuable as Thunder continues its rapid growth.”

About Thunder:

Named one of Forbes’ 100 Most Promising Companies in America, Thunder powers ad creative personalization, decisioning and analytics for advertisers, agencies, and publishers across the globe.

Thunder is the original and leading Creative Management Platform. Thunder CMP customers include leading Fortune 1000 companies such as Anheuser-Busch and McCormick, and acclaimed agencies like J. Walter Thompson.

 

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Press Contact:

Cassady Nordeen

Blast PR on behalf of Thunder

Cassady@blastpr.com

 

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What Is Data-Driven Marketing? – Definition, Examples and Case Studies

How data-driven marketing evolved from 2000-2017

Data-driven marketing is the strategy of using customer information for optimal and targeted media buying and creative messaging. It is one of the most transformational changes in digital advertising that has every occurred.

The rising quality and quantity of marketing data have been followed by explosive growth in the technologies for creative production and automation. These burgeoning mar-tech and ad-tech sectors now enable personalization of every aspect of the marketing experience.

Data-driven decision-making is taking the answers to questions like who, when, where, what message, and making those answers actionable.

Usage and activation of data, often in an automated or semi-automated manner, allows for a significantly more optimized media and creative strategy. This people-first marketing strategy is more personalized. It has also been responsible for driving considerable ROIs for marketers.

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Where Next? Finding Flite Alternatives and Competitors After the CMP Shutdown

Flite alternatives and competitors

Snap’s acquisition of Flite last December led to all Flite ads going dark, leaving some advertisers scrambling to evaluate Flite alternatives and competitors. Although Flite’s website remains online, the creative management platform (CMP) has closed its doors for good.

Ad tech is often considered an area that is oversaturated with similar technologies, and many view Flite’s exit as a positive step for the industry overall. 

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What is Programmatic Creative? – Definition and Tactics

Thunder Creative Management Platform (CMP) designer
Above: Design work being done in Thunder Creative Management Platform

This article is continuously updated to reflect how programmatic creative is evolving.

Programmatic creative enables data-informed, software-assisted creative executions that deliver on the promise of modern digital marketing.

The purpose of programmatic creative is to harness the data that we’re spending billions of dollars to leverage in advertising and activate it to create a more successful execution—one that captures attention and increases campaign results. Studies suggest optimized creative can routinely boost performance by 30-50%, often more.

So to attract eyeballs, programmatic creative is solving the production and creative management challenges in producing a large volume of ads, thereby enabling messages to be hyper-relevant. Rather than showing a generalized creative, these new technologies allow the experience to be specifically tailored and customized to the viewer.

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Programmatic Creative vs. Dynamic Creative Optimization (DCO)

programmatic creative vs. dynamic creative optimization

This post is continuously updated to reflect how programmatic creative and dynamic creative optimization (DCO) are evolving.

When people think of the relationship of programmatic creative vs. DCO, a common misunderstanding is that dynamic creative optimization and programmatic creative are different technologies.

One term is actually a subset of the other. DCO is a form of programmatic creative.

While DCO falls under the programmatic creative umbrella, but it’s not the only way to build creatives that activate the 6+ billion dollars of data in contained in programmatic media.

To illustrate this idea, let’s start with a definition of programmatic creative.

Programmatic Creative Definition

Programmatic creative refers to the set of advertising technologies that add speed, scale, and automation to the creative process. This covers ad production, dynamic ads, and creative optimization.

Programmatic media has unlocked tremendous potential in how we tell stories in paid media online. The purpose of programmatic creative is to enable data and creativity to come together to tell brand stories in a more resonant and effective way than ever before.

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Define Programmatic Advertising – Concept Breakdown and Insider Tactics

Define Programmatic Advertising

Programmatic advertising has been one of the most transformative advancements in marketing. It has also been one of the biggest disruptors to the ad-powered internet.

Now a dominant way to sell and purchase media, programmatic advertising is expected to rise to encompass 58% of all ad spend on digital display this year. The US is the strongest programmatic market, accounting for 62% of all global programmatic ad spend.

But what exactly is programmatic?

Here’s how we define programmatic advertising.

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7 Ingredients For The Perfect Programmatic Creative Management Platform

7 Key Ingredients For A Creative Management Platform

The main concepts of advertising have been around for over a century, but the emergence of programmatic creative and the creative management platform (CMP) is a phenomenon that is much newer.

A number of companies have seen incredible results from creative management platforms, including Anheuser-Busch, the biggest brewer in the world, and Intercontinental Hotels Group (IHG), the second-biggest hospitality company in the world.

Programmatic creative technologies combine well with programmatic buying, data management platforms (DMPs) and demand-side platforms (DSPs). In this ad tech stack arrangement, the CMP is the creative arm of a data-driven campaign strategy.

We’re going to explore seven ingredients that can make up the perfect creative management platform that aligns with your programmatic creative strategy. If you’re still learning about what a CMP is, check out the video below before you review the list.

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The 2017 the Ad Creative Landscape for Programmatic

Ad Creative Landscape - 2017 (Thunder)

In 2017, US programmatic digital display ad spending will reach $27.47 billion, with programmatic representing 72% of the total spend in the category. Mobile is driving a significant portion of programmatic growth.

The lion’s share of display ad inventory will be a combination of rich audience data, targeting and placement.

How will the ads that align with these programmatic buys come into being? What tools are services are used to source the ad content and personalize the ads? Once built, how will the ad performance optimized?

To answer these questions we created the Ad Creative Landscape in 2014, now updated for 2017. Inspired by the Display Ad Lumascape, this graphic summarizes many key players and services in the display ad creation process.

Here’s a breakdown of the main components.

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How To Overcome 80% Of Your Programmatic Creative Challenges

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Image Source: ‘Everything was easier at the beginning’: Marketers vent programmatic frustration – Digiday

At this year’s Digiday Programmatic Summit, participants were asked to jot down their greatest challenges in programmatic advertising. The response was enlightening.

Here’s the breakdown of top programmatic challenges:

  • Telling the difference between vendors (30%)
  • Reconciling creative and programmatic (30%)
  • Time required to improve campaign performance vs. client’s budget (10%)
  • Cracking data budget (10%)
  • Duplication of audiences (10%)
  • Managing campaign cost (5%)
  • Terminology discrepancies between digital and TV departments (5%)

Normally on this blog we try to not talk too much about Thunder. But today I’d like to address these challenges, and show you how Thunder is working everyday to help you overcome them.

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Rich Media Advertising: Who’s Killing It And Why

Who is killing rich media advertising

The writing’s on the wall for rich media advertising as we know it today.

When it debuted, the rich functionality in rich media advertising was seen as a victory. At first it was animation, but then interactive elements became available. Banners could play videos, pop over your screen and expand over content.

The vision behind rich media advertising was admirable: make ads that people want to interact with. But it turned out to be a bait and switch.

Instead of endearing consumers to ads, these formats did the opposite. They pestered users with unwanted pop ups, aggravating expansions, and startling autoplay video with audio. They “politely” loaded megabyte after megabyte on people’s mobile data plans. They intruded at every opportunity because of marginal gains in CTR.

As the ad industry transforms, rich media is on the chopping block. Here are the top 5 attackers.

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The 4 Pillars of Ideal Facebook Ad Creative

Facebook ads creative optimization pillars

With Facebook ads, the creative is the strongest driver of performance. An ad that resonates with and engages people will reduce your CPM/CPC, protect ad delivery and improve performance on your overall objective.

The best part is that Facebook does a lot of creative optimization work for you automatically. With a little extra work, you can reap the benefits and earn great ROI.

In my new whitepaper, the Thunder Playbook for Facebook Creative Optimization, I outline the 4 pillars of ideal Facebook ad creative.

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The Creative Brief Doesn’t Have to Suck

creative-brief-in-agency-workspace

The creative brief sucks because it is too general for the modern customer journey. Here’s a pragmatic solution: Revise our templates so they reflect the advanced targeting capabilities of programmatic advertising and the fragmented consumer landscape they represent.

But today ads can be readily targeted and optimized based on factors like:

  • Demographics
  • Channels
  • Devices
  • Behavioral data
  • CRM/customer journey data

A generalized, generic creative brief is likely to lead to average campaign performance, so it doesn’t invite scrutiny. But if you neglect these details you neglect the most powerful advances in ad tech. Embrace them and your campaign is golden.

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Programmatic Creative Strategies and Tactics Playbooks

playbook

The emergence of programmatic creative platforms has unlocked many ways to tailor, test, and optimize ad creative to drive campaign performance. When we looked into other people’s numbers, we found evidence that customizing creative consistently delivers a 30-50% boost in performance. That’s a little under our experience, where our customers that optimize creatives tend to size up to benchmarks by 2X or more.

It’s clear that in the age of so much data in digital media, the model of showing one generalized creative to everyone is giving way to a new style of advertising that combines data and creative in ways that resonate far more with audiences and produce greater results for advertisers.

But for companies seeking to leverage many of these new strategies, where does one begin? If you’re looking for examples of these ads, how can you find them?

The newest installments to our programmatic creative series of eBooks dig into precisely these questions and the strategies and tactics that new technologies like Creative Management Platforms and dynamic creative optimization make possible.

We’re calling them programmatic creative playbooks. These guides contain example ways to tailor creatives to audiences, including example ads. They are meant to serve as inspiration for the next generation of creative strategy.

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What is a Creative Management Platform (CMP)?

Thunder-Creative-Management-Platform
Above: Advertisement variations created in Thunder Creative Management Platform

Creative Management Platforms are a class of programmatic creative ad technologies that meet the design needs of modern digital advertisers who are looking to tailor, test and optimize the creatives in their campaigns.

The core use of a CMP is ad design and production at scale. To tailor an ad’s messaging to its audience, for each segment, a different creative must be produced or generated. CMPs use a combination of manual and automated features to amplify the creative output of a team dramatically.

 

What benefits do advertisers get from Creative Management Platforms?

Advertisers can use the high volume of creative production enabled by Creative Management Platforms to make their creatives perform better through three key qualities:

  1. Tailored: Achieve message relevance by tailoring creatives to audiences
  2. Timely: Keep the creatives fresh by being able to refresh messaging frequently
  3. Tested: Have creatives to split test, learn, and optimize from
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PaperG Rebrands to “Thunder” as it Unveils PowerPlus for Facebook

Thunder Advertising - Programmatic Creative

Thunder is the First Solution Enabling Brands to Simultaneously Build, Edit and Preview Creatives Across Display and Social — New Identity Reflects Company Mission to Optimize Creative Ads Across Channels

San Francisco, CA – (April 25, 2016) – Effective today, PaperG, the original and leading Creative Management Platform, announces it has changed its name to Thunder. Additionally, the company has unveiled the first-ever solution for marketers to build, edit and preview creatives across display and social creatives in one interface, called PowerPlus for Facebook.

The concept of perfectly synchronized campaign waves is analogous to “rolling thunder,” which is both a natural concept and a term used by marketers to describe how thunderstorms and campaigns build in strength and power as they successfully move through time and distance. It is also part of the thinking that led the company and its board to rename and reposition PaperG as Thunder.

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