Interview of the week | Naren Nachiappan, MD, Jivox India, applying analytics to advertising industry

Interview of the week | Naren Nachiappan, MD, Jivox India, applying analytics to advertising industry

A leader in data driven advertising and marketing, Jivox has been enabling some of the world’s most successful brands and media companies to deliver sophisticated, highly personalized digital marketing and advertising campaigns. This new data-driven approach to digital marketing is completely transforming the way companies communicate with people.

Founded by Diaz Nesamoney in 2007, some of the marquee customer list of Jivox include A&E Networks, Charles Schwab, College Humor, Crispin Porter & Bogusky, Federated Media, FedEx, Digitas, Havas, Red Bull, Universal McCann, Wieden+Kennedy and more.

Jivox’s flagship product, Jivox IQ has been used today by several hundreds of brands, media companies and creative agencies to create and serve their most demanding multi-screen ad campaigns. Brands across the globe rely on Jivox’s data driven dynamic ad platform to create, serve and manage personalized advertising campaigns aka programmatic creative advertising.

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This San Mateo California based digital marketing platform recently raises $6 million in new financing, led by the world’s first “Brandtech” group You & Mr Jones and its founder David Jones, the former global CEO of advertising conglomerate Havas.  

To explore more about the company,  importance of analytics in the advertising industry, its roadmap to utilize funds and more, AIM interacted with Naren Nachiappan, MD, Jivox India. A graduate cum laude from Harvard University and an MBA from the UC Berkeley Haas School of Business, Naren has been associated with companies like Wind River, Proceler and VenturCom amongst a few in the past. Here’s the detailed interview with Naren.

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Analytics India Magazine: How is Jivox utilizing Big data? How has it proved to be the game changer for the company?

Naren Nachiappan: Jivox utilizes Big Data technologies to aggregate and analyze the large volumes of data we acquire in several different categories. First, Cookie data related to website behavior and transactions generated on websites and second Data related to interactions between viewers and ads.  The data from both these sources is very large – to provide an example. A 100 million impression campaign could generate approximately 30 data points per impression, resulting in 3 billion data points for the campaign. Multiply this by the 1000s of campaigns we run continuously on our platform, and that is an approximation of the scale we manage using big data technologies.

AIM: Would you like to throw some light on how analytics has become a substantial part of the advertising industry? How do you see the future of data in advertising?

NP: Analytics is a critical component of the ad industry’s requirements. The volume of data as indicated previously is well beyond the scope of traditional data analysis techniques and requires standardized aggregated analytics/metrics to measure performance, efficiency, and also provide indicators for optimizing marketing strategies.

Data is and will continue to be critical to the advertising industry, it has emerged as a powerful complement to creative strategies to deliver engaging advertisements. Data/Analytics allows us to, tune advertisements via feedback related to efficiency of ads, allowing marketers to converge on advertising solutions that deliver optimal results. Data allows us to differentiate the impact of small variations in the creative, and manage the delivery of hyper personalized ads to individual viewers.

AIM: How would machine learning become the next generation tool for marketing optimization?

NP: Machine learning is rapidly replacing traditional manual analysis of advertising results for purposes of optimization. Previous generations of optimization relied on statistical techniques to understand the impact of creative strategies, typically after the completion of a campaign, or at discrete points in the campaign. Machine learning can occur in real-time, and can be introduced in the loop between the Big Data generated by ads, and the creative platform that is responsible for generating creative variations. This allows instantaneous feedback from each impression to influence optimization, and drives better results. This of course requires the ability to “machine generate” creative – that is a necessary foundation for the entire technology stack that enables programmatic media and creative to function together effectively.

AIM: Would you like to talk about funding? How does Jivox intend on utilizing it? Also, would you like to talk about the company’s expansion to Bangalore, major goals that Jivox aims to accomplish and the kind of knowledge & skill sets that you are looking for while hiring your workforce?

NP: The common theme behind our funding, expansion and the new center is our vision to build the most complete platform that delivers efficient programmatic creative as a complement to programmatic media – the new norm for the digital marketing industry. This requires hard core computing technologies to be brought together – front end technologies that enable the delivery of highly customized creative that are generated on the fly, and back end technologies that aggregate and manage vast quantities of data, bound together by machine learning technologies that enable real-time optimization.

We have, in the past month, had the pleasure of interviewing candidates at IITs, BITs and ISB from their class of 2017, and look forward to welcoming new hires from these institutions later this year. Data structures and algorithms, database theory, and most importantly the theory of computation are areas of expertise we look for, in addition to expert programming skills. These are essential to be good contributors to our team.

On the marketing side, our ISB graduates (we have successfully hired from ISB last year too) bring advanced skills in marketing, customer analysis, and customer strategy. The team is  expected to build advertising strategies for our customers, and so will need to be well versed in the best practices and methodologies of several different vertical industry segments includes retail, automotive, financial and FMCG, among others.

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