Home  › Marketing › Strategies

Specific Media's Adviva Buy Aimed at Behavioral Growth in UK

  |  March 13, 2008   |  Comments

Ad network Specific Media has begun expanding overseas, and acquired U.K.-based network Adviva.

Ad network Specific Media has begun expanding overseas, and acquired U.K.-based network Adviva.

The move is the "first step in the company's international expansion," said Specific Media co-founder and CEO Tim Vanderhook, noting the firm is looking at a number of other possibilities, particularly in the European, Asian and Australian markets. Adviva advertiser clients include BT, Lexus and Toyota.

Specific Media combines demographic, behavioral, contextual and geographic ad targeting, and Vanderhook said a key driver for the acquisition was the opportunity to extend its behavioral targeting system to reach a U.K. audience.

Specific Media claims to have anonymous data on the browsing activity of 365 million consumers worldwide, collected through a network of two million partner sites. Detailed analytic reports are given to site publishers in exchange for access to the data. Vanderhook described this relationship as a "data cooperation."

"The acquisition of Adviva gives us the opportunity to utilize the European portion of our data," he said. "Our network will bring real scale to behavioral ad targeting in the U.K." In the U.S., Specific Media's publisher partners include ABC, CBS, FOX, ESPN and Major League Baseball.

Some may draw comparisons between Specific Media's system and that of behavioral ad targeting companies such as Phorm, which uses data gathered from ISPs rather than specific sites.

"We're doing a similar thing to Phorm," said Vanderhook. "The difference is that we know a little less about a lot of people, whereas they have more detailed information about a smaller amount of users."

Specific media claims to reach nearly 80 percent of U.K. users, whereas Phorm's recent deal with U.K. ISPs gives the company access to between 50 and 60 percent, according to Screen Digest.

Vanderhook acknowledged that there were privacy issues surrounding behavioral targeting, regardless of how the data is collected. "Consumer privacy is of utmost importance here," he said. "In reality though, I think there are more privacy safeguards in online ads than in some offline mediums, such as direct mail."

Ultimately, the success of behavioral targeting companies such as Phorm and Specific Media could depend on user perception and adoption of their systems. Phorm has already found itself in hot water in terms of privacy, and its technologies are still yet to be deployed in the U.K.

"It's about the industry communicating what it's doing to the public," suggested Vanderhook. "It's just a question of how best to do this, and who should pick up the bill," he added.

Though they don't always publicize it, many behavioral targeting firms use data collected by publishers outside their ad networks to target ads to network sites. Specific Media allows users to opt out of having their Web interactions tracked, although they are opted-in by default.

The Adviva acquisition brings Specific Media's total employee count to almost 200. Vanderhook said the company will be hiring aggressively, and seeks to bring an additional 50 European staff on board over the next year.

The company's European headquarters will be based in London, and headed by Adviva's CEO and co-founder Todd Treusdell, who will serve as Specific Media's managing director, European Operations.

This story originally stated that ABC, CBS, FOX, ESPN and Major League Baseball are Specific Media advertiser clients; however, they are publisher partners.

Tags:

ClickZ Live New York What's New for 2015?
You spoke, we listened! ClickZ Live New York (Mar 30-Apr 1) is back with a brand new streamlined agenda. Don't miss the latest digital marketing tips, tricks and tools that will make you re-think your strategy and revolutionize your marketing campaigns. Super Saver Rates are available now. Register today!

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Jack Marshall

Jack Marshall was a staff writer and stats editor for ClickZ News from 2007 until August 2011. 

COMMENTSCommenting policy

comments powered by Disqus

Get the ClickZ Marketing newsletter delivered to you. Subscribe today!

COMMENTS

UPCOMING EVENTS

UPCOMING TRAINING

Featured White Papers

Google My Business Listings Demystified

Google My Business Listings Demystified
To help brands control how they appear online, Google has developed a new offering: Google My Business Locations. This whitepaper helps marketers understand how to use this powerful new tool.

5 Ways to Personalize Beyond the Subject Line

5 Ways to Personalize Beyond the Subject Line
82 percent of shoppers say they would buy more items from a brand if the emails they sent were more personalized. This white paper offer five tactics that will personalize your email beyond the subject line and drive real business growth.

WEBINARS

    Information currently unavailable

Jobs

    • Lead Generation Specialist
      Lead Generation Specialist (The Oxford Club) - BaltimoreThe Oxford Club is seeking a talented writer/marketer to join our growing email lead-generation...
    • Health Marketing Editor
      Health Marketing Editor (Agora Inc.) - BaltimoreCome flex your intellectual muscle as part of Agora, Inc’s (http://agora-inc.com/) legal team...
    • Technical Business Analyst
      Technical Business Analyst (OmniVista Health) - BaltimoreOmniVista Health is looking to add a Technical Business Analyst to our expanding team...