Online advertising is a complex and fragmented landscape, filled with lots of jargon and acronyms (DSPs, SSPs, RTB, etc). The daunting Luma landscape illustrates the complexity and fragmentation well. Additionally, there has not been much customer loyalty associated with companies in the space due to poor customer service and a lack of transparency in the market. Advertisers and publishers have been quite metric driven and both have been known to jump around from one “shiny new toy” to the next. For these reasons, North Atlantic has generally shied away from online advertising companies for the past few years.
But I have learned that you should never rule out a type of company based on past stigmas about the group. Things can rapidly change, and often the disruptive and differentiated companies are the ones that break down the stigmas associated with the group. I would characterize Triggit, which just yesterday announced North Atlantic’s investment, as that type of company. Triggit is a demand-side platform (DSP) that enables advertisers to run retargeting-driven display campaigns. Triggit is a leader and innovator on Facebook’s real-time bidding exchange, FBX, which is in the early days of its growth, and the company also helps advertisers on other RTB ad exchanges, like Google’s AdEx.
The areas where DSPs have historically been very bad (customer service, pricing and creative) are the areas where Triggit shines. Triggit provides its customers tremendous customer service and transparency and flexibility on pricing and creative, which has allowed it to gain significant customer loyalty from several large customers (primarily online retailers and travel sites with millions of monthly visitors and hundreds of differentiated products).
Most people hate ads online. But companies like Triggit are making ads better for advertisers, publishers, and consumers. Advertising is the lifeblood of the internet, and the emergence of these types of companies are important for the growth of web companies. Keep an eye out for Triggit (and take note of whether or not the ads on the right side of your Facebook screen are getting better and more relevant to you).