Sramana Mitra: Interesting. With the real-time nature of your work, how do your customers take into account the signals that you’re providing and quickly act on them? What are the interfaces and APIs that you plug into to enable them to act on that?
Mike Driscoll: It is all about the action that people can take on behalf of insights they may get. Until yesterday when we made the announcement of our inaugural API, Metamarkets had historically been focused on interactive dashboards. The decisions that our clients are making are often human-mediated, much like traders on Wall Street looking at tickers and reacting in real-time. Having real-time UIs is just one step. They want to plug the data and the insights that they are gaining into their own workflows.
Yesterday, we launched the Metamarkets API which provides all of the same real-time dynamic signal that we’ve always provided through our UIs. There’s a number of use cases. One is in the world of marketing. The principal object is a campaign. When a brand of sneakers is launching a new brand in the Fall for a younger demographic, they are running a campaign that has a budget. It’s very important for those digital campaigns to stay within their budget. Metamarkets is a tool where how much they’re spending in a given hour or minute can be tracked with a high amount of granularity. One of our clients is planing on using the Metamarkets API to automatically halt campaigns that might be over budget or increase activity on campaigns that might be under budget.
Sramana Mitra: Obviously, the whole media-buying industry has become as automated as possible over the last few years. It’s going to continue to be so. Your kind of technologies make all that automation more powerful. As a matter of fact, there’s no other way to do this level of precise media buying without intervention of technologies like yours. If you double-click down on that broad trend, what other domain-specific trends do you see in the industry?
Mike Driscoll: You’re absolutely right that the revolution that we’ve witnessed in how marketers reach audience around the globe has been driven by some of these digital technologies that provide better automation. While I think that there has been a great trend towards automating the execution of media-buying and the movement of pixels and dollars, there has actually not been a similar level of automation around the metadata that goes along the transactions themselves.
When it comes to figuring out how much money they’ve spent on a given day, it actually takes a week to get all of the reporting. As is often the case with infrastructure build-out, first we build the pipes and then we only later build the instrumentation on the pipes. It took several decades after we built the first automobile until we had the first pedometer. The build-out of instrumentation on not just the pipes but what’s going through the pipes is just now starting to occur.