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Seth Ulinski

Member since December 2012 Contact Seth

Seth leads Ad Tech coverage within the Digital practice at Technology Business Research, Inc. (TBR). Prior to TBR, Seth founded AdTech Advisory LLC, a consultancy serving digital marketers, ad agencies, and ad tech vendors.

Articles by Seth All articles by Seth

  • Yahoo - The Oakland Raiders Of Digital Advertising in Real-Time Daily on 10/21/2014

    With the NFL season in full swing, I started thinking about ways I could compare/contrast the worlds of digital advertising and football. It occurred to me how many similarities there are between the Oakland Raiders and Yahoo. Before calling for a "quick kick" and treating this like a 3rd and miles to go situation, consider the following:

  • Ad Tech: Below-The-Radar $15B Market Goes Prime-Time in RTB Insider on 09/03/2014

    Multiple reports indicate the global digital advertising market is on pace to exceed $120 billion in 2014, growing roughly 16% year-to-year. While this is a great topline industry number, I have not seen many reports of revenue captured by advertising technology (ad tech) platforms. Typically estimates aggregate keyword search, digital media, and technology into a single number.

  • GroupM's Strategy To Abandon RTB Is Safe, But Is It Sound? in Real-Time Daily on 07/10/2014

    There's been significant discussion around GroupM's decision to forego open ad exchanges, opting instead for deal IDs and private marketplace deals with "premium" publishers. A couple of key reasons/concerns for going the direct route include viewability and the presence of bots. These two separate types of plaques are having a negative impact on the ad exchange business -- no question about that -- however, there are solutions in the market to mitigate the percentage of "bad" campaign impressions in open ad exchanges. As many know, the IAB has already gone through the painstaking process of defining viewability as well as approving auditors via the 3MS initiative.

  • Taking Programmatic In-House: The Impact For Marketers in Real-Time Daily on 06/17/2014

    It's no secret that global brands are opting to bring programmatic media buying in-house. The list of companies doing this includes Fortune 500 companies such as P&G, Unilever, and Netflix. In addition to the immediate impact on the client-agency-vendor ecosystem, there are some equally interesting developments taking place on the larger technology landscape. Here are a few of the risks that marketers must consider when they take programmatic media-buying in-house.

  • Ad Tech Remarketing Specialists: Acquisitions In Review (Where's Oracle?) in Real-Time Daily on 06/16/2014

    During the current quarter, display re-marketing specialists have been getting snatched up at warp speed. In Q2 alone, a total of three of these companies have been acquired. In addition to their function in the ad tech stack, a key theme with each of these specialists is their core vertical: Retail.

  • Programmatic: More Than RTB in Real-Time Daily on 06/03/2014

    During an interview focused on digital video advertising, the WSJ's head of global ad sales made the declaration that the company did not participate in programmatic and they were "fortunate" for being able to stay clear of it. This gave me pause -- even though the comment was likely in reference to real-time bidding (RTB), it was also an indication that the full definition of programmatic still may not be understood, embraced, etc. (slightly troubling if you consider the IAB outlined what constitutes programmatic from a publisher standpoint last September).

  • Silicon Valley And Madison Ave: Bridge Construction Continues in Real-Time Daily on 05/22/2014

    About six months before Oracle acquired BlueKai for $400M, I wrote an article predicting that an Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software company would make a significant investment in the ad tech space to the tune of $500-750 million. Admittedly I overshot the price tag, but as most can attest, it's still the Wild West from a valuation standpoint in the world of ad tech.

  • Buyers And Sellers: The Benefits Of An Email Diet in Online Publishing Insider on 04/24/2014

    It's no secret that the buy side (marketers, ad agencies, etc) receive a tremendous number of "cold emails" from the sell side (publishers, tech vendors, etc) looking to engage in business. A few digital buyers have told me they will see 50 to 100 on a given day. It has gotten to the point where buy-side players have resorted to working with email addresses that were created specifically to dodge dreaded vendor email solicitations. For example, a digital marketing exec at an automotive brand ditched the corporate nomenclature ( for a combination of initials plus numbers ( Has it really come to this?

  • Native Is Good, Responsive Is Better in Online Publishing Insider on 03/21/2014

    Understanding how to deliver advertising while taking publisher design into consideration is a logical next step for the industry, and will pay dividends for brands, publishers, and consumers.

  • WPP Acquires Crystal Semantics: Hedging Bets Given Demise Of The Cookie, Or Is Content Truly King? in Real-Time Daily on 12/10/2013

    After firsthand experience selling Crystal Semantics' core technology while working with European-based Ad Pepper Media a few years ago, I can say the technology's ability to analyze page-level content was impressive and well-received by a number of agencies and brands. However, its biggest limitation was simple: it required significant scale and a programmatic-buying platform to unlock the full value.

Comments by Seth All comments by Seth

  • Programmatic Continues To See Big Jumps: Spend Up 50% In Q4 by Tyler Loechner (RTBlog on 06/02/2015)

    Worth noting that 2 of the top 10 programmatic ad spenders have taken active positions in not just operating, but actual ownship of ad tech, e.g. Verizon + Amazon.  Microsoft is still not "all in" from my seat, but timing seems right to make a move.  In addition to insourcing trend by global brands, will be interested to see how other major brands/industries pursue ad tech takeownership -- DSP? DMP? Both?  Tech and e-commerce co.'s are likely candidates, perhaps finance (e.g. AMEX) is next.

  • The Evolution Of The Agency Biz Is Clearer Than You Might Think by Cory Treffiletti (Online Spin on 05/27/2015)

    Great write-up, Cory.  We've identified three types of participants in this new digital marketing services landscape: digital agencies, IT services firms, and management consultancies.  While data/analytics and system integration work play to strengths of IT heavyweights like IBM, Accenture, etc -- the big idea and creative elements still carry significant weight when CMOs are selecting an AOR.  However at some point soon I think a Fortune 500 brand will hand all creative/media duties to an IT services firm that has acquired a boutique or two -- that's when things will get interesting.

  • The Ace Up Its Sleeve: AOL Used Programmatic Tech As Key Bargaining Chip With Verizon by Tyler Loechner (Real-Time Daily on 05/26/2015)

    Great details, still TBD whether VZ will make a long-term play on the content side of the business.  Will also be curious to see how strong a sales effort goes behind the DMP business -- Verizon vs. Oracle vs. Adobe -- diverse co. DNAs to say the least.

  • Netflix Does Programmatic In-House Because They Can by Tyler Loechner (Real-Time Daily on 05/20/2015)

    It is a big commitment to insource, but plenty of benefits for those with the grit, time, and resources.  While at Oracle Data Cloud Summit the global lead for Dell's marketing technology platforms stated it was a four year endevour to get the various ad tech components and processes aligned. Lots of testing and learning along the way.

  • Nielsen Launches Multi-Touch Attribution Offering by Tyler Loechner (Real-Time Daily on 05/06/2015)

    While Krux and eXelate are both DMPs, they have different capabilities and use cases; the move further highlights need for open platforms and data agnosticism.

  • How Agencies Can Win The Battle Against Ad-Tech Companies by Maciej Zawadziński (RTB Insider on 04/13/2015)

    Great points, Maciej.  While platforms are driving the business, people are still the secret sauce.  Agencies have "permission" and access to C-suite where they've established long-standing relationships; ad tech co's are still largely viewed as vendors.

  • Nielsen Acquires DMP eXelate, Enters Programmatic Audience-Buying Marketplace by Tyler Loechner and Joe Mandese (Real-Time Daily on 03/04/2015)

    A couple notes: few major players remain in the stand-alone DMP segment (e.g. Krux, Lotame). This is yet another acquisition of an ad tech vendor by a company that operates in an adjacent market.

  • Programmatic And RTB Are Now Mainstream -- Just Ask Publicis by Sean Hargrave (London Blog on 02/17/2015)

    Interesting perspective and this is a significant move. On one level, I see it reducing the need to "sell" a client twice: once on the strategy/plan and again on the value prop of VivaKi. However, given Publicis recently acquired a will it be used vs. independent 3rd party vendors?

  • Accounting for Ad Tech And Agencies by Brian Wieser (Real-Time Daily on 02/06/2015)

    Great write, up Brian. Ad Tech is already a tricky animal from a general business standpoint, these accounting nuances can tell a story about vendor lines of business -- are they purely tech/infrastructure (i.e. SaaS/IaaS)? Or if there is an element of arbitrage baked into an area such as Managed Services? I vote for removing TAC and "pass-thru" such as Managed Rev for Net Rev comparisons.

  • DoubleClick, Marin Named 'Leaders' In Cross-Channel Marketing by Tyler Loechner (RTBlog on 01/28/2015)

    While this is interesting, I agree with Hollis on the label (and yes the industry is guilty of being squishy on biz segments). Further, I'd be curious about composition of the 250 respondents: agency, ATD, brands? Headcount/revenue ranges, etc. Not seeing vendors such as Turn and Criteo makes me question results how "Market Presence" is factored. Both represent global, multi-channel platforms. They also happen to be more representative of 'marketing' platforms than some of those listed, e.g. Turn + Marketo alliance; Criteo acquisition of Tedemis.

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