After working for years in the finance sector, Vince Banks made the jump to the magazine business in 2006. He is now VP-digital media at IDG TechNetwork, an online advertising network for technology marketers and agencies. Banks' group recently launched a data-management platform that uses the history and audience profiles of all of IDG's divisions. Media Business: What are the big issues you see on the production front for the industry right now? Vince Banks:
The biggest issue is balance between building our ad products and building our network. The main objective of a good ad network is to create audience scale within relevant context/content. In order to scale to that highly targeted group of people, we need to work with as many premium publishers as possible. Unlike owned-and-operated sites, which are usually created on the same platform, in an ad network, every publisher's backend platform—such as a CMS or ad server—can be different. So when we create our ad-product offerings, we need to create a unique product that can meet our advertisers' objectives but that can also be implemented across a number of different backend publisher platforms. Basically, we need to create high-impact ad products and solutions with very simple implementation requirements. MB: What is your department working on right now? Banks:
Our department is working on integrating all of our network inventory sources under one internal platform in order to maximize speed and load time, and limit impression loss. This should result in maximizing revenue by monetizing more impressions. This will also allow us to utilize our Data Management product across every impression—making every TechNet impression a smart impression since data is involved.