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Progress Partners is a boutique investment firm based in Boston and New York City providing financial advisory services to companies in media, marketing, advertising, and software.

Beet.TV Coverage of Progress Connect 2016: Following Geo Fencing Launch, DSP Simpli.fi Eyes Localized Native Ads

Article by Steve Ellwanger (November 8, 2016)

BOSTON – To bring the power of programmatic advertising to marketers with localized targeting needs, unstructured data beats pre-packaged audience segments, says Frost Prioleau, CEO of demand-side platform Simpli.fi. It’s a mantra that is fueling Simpli.fi’s expansion into more precise measurement of mobile foot traffic and, very shortly, localized native advertising.

Within the realm of programmatic ad solutions, “Most of the investments and most of the platforms in the space are focused on large national advertisers,” Prioleau says in an interview with Beet.TV. “And so as opposed to those companies, we said ‘Hey, we’re going to bring the power of programmatic advertising to the little guy, the localized advertisers.’”

This is not to say Simpli.fi is ignoring the big guys. Its clients consist of small mom-and-pop shops, single-location businesses and national brands with many locations. “So think of quick-service restaurant companies, real estate companies, financial services companies who have many, many offices and want to localize their campaign as opposed to running a large national campaign,” says Prioleau.

Simpli.fi’s secret sauce consists of two main ingredients: unstructured targeting data and the ability to generate performance from high volumes of very small ad campaigns. “Because we work with data on a more granular level, we don’t use pre-packaged audience segments. We customize audiences to the local needs,” Prioleau says.

He cites the example of a Toyota dealer in Palo Alto will a lot full of Prius vehicles and a Toyota dealer in Fort Worth Texas that needs to move Tundra pickup trucks. “We can customize the audience that the Toyota dealer in Palo Alto wants versus the audience that the Toyota dealer in Forth Worth does based on their products,” says Prioleau.

While Simpli.fi’s specialty is the ability to automate the process of getting high performance getting lots of smaller, localized campaigns, “We run the range” of spending, Prioleau adds. The platform currently has 40,000 live campaigns—with median spending at $3 per day—20,000 of which spend less than $3 daily.

“We recently did a campaign during the debates where we were spending $1,000 a minute, so that would be $1.5 million per day,” says Prioleau.

Earlier this year, Simpli.fi launched Conversion Zones, which enable businesses to track store traffic driven by mobile advertising campaigns. Conversion Zones are customizable geo-fences around a location that identify the number of consumers that received the business’ mobile advertisement and then physically visit the location.

“Mobile has been a huge year for us,” says Prioleau. “We will be launching our first native capabilities here in a couple of weeks. We think native is a great fit for the local market.”

We interviewed him last month at the Progress Partners Connect conference. Our coverage of the conference is sponsored by Simpli.fi. More videos from the series can be found on this page.

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