In a workforce of "free agents" all hunting to climb the next rung on some other company's ladder, it's hard to staff up with people you trust. When Syracuse grad Michael Katz started the InterClick ad network in 2003, "I found the first couple of people I hired didn't care about the company the way I cared about it." Who better to trust than the frat brothers who shared antics that well, Katz won't discuss them even to this day. "Probably nothing you can print, anyway," he says.
So Katz hired Andrew Greenberg as vice president of business development and Michael Marvul as vice president of ad sales. Both are fellow SAE brothers (that's Sigma Alpha Epsilon to you non-Greeks), and their loyalty shows. Katz's frat buddies followed InterClick through moves to Florida and now to New York. And such loyalty has paid off in a booming network serving 40 million daily impressions to the likes of YouTube, Classmates, and NetZero.
The unique model lets advertisers bid on a CPM for banner space at specific sites. "What people like about us is the transparency. They know their ads won't show up in questionable areas, and with the auction-based system they will run efficient campaigns," says Katz. And if clients are ever up for hazing the competition with arcane Greek initiation rituals, well, they know who to call.