Over my 20-year career I have been very fortunate to be involved in pioneering projects that have come to shape digital marketing. In that time I saw the birth of paid search, shopping and affiliates at Yahoo and Kelkoo, behavioural targeting with Tacoda, algorithmic paid search at Unique Digital (Sky, Shop Direct), the launch of trading desks and programmatic at MediaCom (Xaxis, Appnexus), the launch of paid social and Facebook again at MediaCom to more recent projects working on a post-cookie world at Canton and a privacy-by-design world with InfoSum.
Throughout that time there have been numerous opportunities to see the giants of today emerge. I spoke about InfoSum, which I am certain will be a giant of tomorrow, some weeks ago and it's great to see another with huge potential emerge in the UK - Fifty.io.
Fifty is a unique data and advertising technology business that brings together relational network technology, graph-based customer understanding, advanced semantic processing and audience visualisation within one platform.
What it enables marketers and brands to do is threefold:
1. Understand their existing customers by segmenting them into tribes based on their online behaviours. Fifty’s visual and dynamic segmentation tool creates highly actionable insights enabling brands to delve deeper into what their customers care about.
2. Find new customers and prospects that brands may not have known were engaged with them, through discovering similarities and overlaps of interests between these online-dwelling tribes.
3. Allow brands to execute campaigns for their customers and prospects in a world of multiple IDs and signals. The current programmatic ecosystem and mobile landscapes are easily addressable. Crucially Fifty is able to operate in the post-cookie worlds of the authenticated web and the anonymous web using proxy data for efficient targeting.
For me, Fifty has the holy trinity of traits that set a company up for success during this new era of digital marketing.
1. It enables brands to gain huge marketing value from their customer data without being tied to cookies for execution or measurement. This allows it to seamlessly operate in the authenticated web and the anonymous web.
2. It is able to add value to the ecosystem as well as just playing in it. It does this by massively enriching the customer data with social and contextual data. And all of this is delivered through beautiful insight and planning dashboards and seamless execution.
3. It is an omnichannel company, prioritising display but operating comfortably operating in video and paid social and as the market develops, connected TV.
The fourth era of digital advertising is being born out of the pandemic, recession, and technology change. This era is being defined by being privacy-first, customer-focused and multichannel.
Fifty.io shares these traits with other companies that are also perfectly geared to succeed in this new landscape. Customer data platforms and other data players focused on the customer, quality publishers that have logged-in users and operate in multiple media environments, advertisers that have invested in their media data, technology and expertise and service companies that have the rare skills to support this new world.
This era is emerging before our eyes as we see large firms like Adobe invest heavily in CDP, other emerging companies such as mParticle, the aforementioned InfoSum, supply side businesses like Permutive, progressive publishers like Channel 4 and the Telegraph as well as numerous advertisers investing in their media data and technology. This means that Fifty can operate seamlessly in this new, successful and soon-to-be rapidly growing ecosystem.
So while there is a long road to travel I recommend all of you check out Fifty and wish an excellent team good fortune. In years to come I am confident you will be glad you did.
Rob Webster, co-founder, Canton Marketing Solutions