Before joining AdMob as VP-advertising sales, Mr. Nethercutt headed ad sales for YouTube. Prior to joining YouTube in May, he worked for four years at Yahoo as director of media strategies. When Google acquired YouTube, Mr. Nethercutt and another former Yahoo colleague at the video-sharing site were let go; their departures underscored the acrimony between rivals Google and Yahoo.
Links marketers with mobile content
AdMob, founded this year, is a global mobile advertising marketplace that links marketers of all sizes with mobile-content sites. It handles more than 400 million page views per month in 160 nations. Like YouTube, AdMob is funded by Sequoia Capital.
Mr. Nethercutt's task is to further broaden AdMob's advertiser base, building out new revenue models and sales teams. "We're looking to find additional ways for advertisers to take advantage of the opportunities on the mobile web," by making it "simple and easy" for an advertiser to get that reach across mobile web, Mr. Nethercutt said.
AdMob CEO Omar Hamoui said hiring Mr. Nethercutt underscores AdMob's move into offering for larger marketers advertising rates based on cost-per-thousand viewers. "We're targeting high end customers," said Mr. Hamoui.
AdMob began with a self-serve tool allowing cost-per-click text ads on mobile websites. But AdMob will now compete with established players Third Screen Media and Enpocket. It also will compete to some extent Google and Yahoo, which offer search ads on their own mobile properties.
The challenge, Mr. Nethercutt said, "is simply education and continuing to build out what's possible. Like any nascent medium, it's early," as some marketers "still don't have a line item for interactive or interactive video," he said.
'Evangelizing the medium'
"We're taking responsibility for taking out and evangelizing the medium." Mr. Nethercutt noted that whatever advertising is done on the mobile web has to be respectful of consumers.
Mary Ann O'Loughlin, senior VP-consumer practice, Ovum, estimated $150 million was spent on mobile marketing in the U.S. this year, up from $45 million in 2005. Spending is projected to grow to $1.26 billion by 2009. She agreed with Mr. Nethercutt that the key issue is not to alienate mobile phone users. "Mobile is very personal," she noted.
Mr. Nethercutt, 48, who has worked in the ad business for 22 years, started with TV sales before moving to interactive at DoubleClick Network and Carat Interactive.