Ms. Newland will be responsible for educating brands on the concept of advertising through content creation and distribution instead of just placing ads near content -- a growing emphasis among digital-media companies. Examples include Facebook's "sponsored story," Buzzfeed's "story unit" and StumbleUpon's "Paid Discovery" product, which lets advertisers pay to insert websites carrying their branded content into the stream of sites that StumbleUpon shows users.
Advertisers can get reporting on how many StumbleUpon visitors gave the content a "thumbs up" or down, and how long they remained on the website before stumbling to the next site in their content stream.
Ms. Newland was most recently global VP/group director of brand content at Digitas, where she helped brands think of themselves as publishers. She said that StumbleUpon's platform stood out to her as an interesting model of content distribution.
"The opportunity to discover content in a mode of serendipity was very unique to me," she said.
Ms. Newland said she hopes to expand StumbleUpon's sales staff, which currently numbers in the single digits, with new positions in Los Angeles and Chicago.
CEO Garrett Camp said StumbleUpon will continue to focus on Paid Discovery as its main revenue source, refining the service by adding better targeting capabilities. The company may eventually boost revenue, however, by syndicating its ad platform, he said.
StumbleUpon also has significant international aspirations, and hopes to launch several non-English versions of the site this year, Mr. Camp said.
StumbleUpon says it has more than 20 million registered users, double the number of 16 months ago. The company has worked with big brands, such as Intuit, Sony, Chipotle and Heineken.
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