Media All Star: George Popstefanov

When George Popstefanov founded Fort Worth, Texas-based PMG in 2010, after cutting his teeth as a strategist at Range Online Media, he saw an opportunity to leverage technology to help solve marketers' problems in the still nascent realm of digital media.

Nearly eight years later, Popstefanov has created a best-in-class agency combining technical expertise and innovation to improve not just business processes, but the underlying way that brand marketers interact with consumers digitally.

The approach has earned PMG relationships with some of the most technologically sophisticated brands in the world -- companies like Apple, Google, OpenTable and Travelocity -- known for creating best-in-class technological experiences for consumers.

They were attracted by a unique service approach that first focuses on identifying which problem a marketer wants to utilize digital media to solve, and then developing a strategy for implementing it -- and finally, engineering the technology required to solve the problem and improve the brand experience for its consumers.



PMG calls this approach “gap technology,” because it often develops a solution that fills a gap that is not otherwise being met by its usual supply chain of advertising and technology services.

The development of those technologies often manifests in ways that support the agency itself, so it can sustain its clients' needs. Occasionally, it leads to new products and services that get spun off from the agency, such as Koddi, a bid management and campaign analytics and optimization platform that operates as a freestanding company serving the likes of some of the most sophisticated programmatic advertisers, including Google, Hotel Finder, TripAdvisor and Kayak.

Popstefanov has also emerged as a leading advocate of “transparency” and ethics in the digital media marketplace, as well as between clients and their agencies. PMG, for example, has an explicit policy against receiving rebates from publishers and technology platforms and negotiates and represents itself strictly as an agency for its clients.

This approach and credo has attracted some of the world's most trusted brands as PMG customers, including Adidas, J.Crew and Sephora.

The world's most trusted brands -- Apple, Sephora, J.Crew, to name a few -- trust George and his team to connect with their customers and drive their businesses forward. "George is a force, helping reshape brands in the age of digital transformation, while also building technology and capabilities to understand customer signals and behaviors like never before,” notes Brad Wilson, CMO of LendingTree, who previously worked with PMG when he was CMO of Travelocity.

Unlike some agency CEOs, Popstefanov keeps his hand in client service, technology development and strategy on a day-to-day basis.

Under his leadership, PMG was the only independent agency to establish formal, exclusive API partnerships with Google, Facebook and Snapchat, carrying out his vision for PMG to be at the forefront of audience targeting. PMG has continued to enjoy 90% retention rates among clients and employees, expanded into London, and set a new revenue high-water mark, capping a three-year period where revenue averaged 56% annual growth.

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