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Wunderkind Success Story:

This is a podcast episode titled, Wunderkind Success Story: The summary for this episode is:
00:26 MIN
What Is's Brand Mission?
00:43 MIN
Describe the Growth at IBM Watson Advertising
00:30 MIN
"Our Biggest Goal Is to Drive Revenue."
00:24 MIN's Biggest Challenge
00:18 MIN
Even in Good Weather, How Are You Getting People on-Site?
01:15 MIN Chose Wunderkind Over Other Providers Due to the High Quality of Advertisers in Their Network
00:17 MIN
Higher Impact Units Allow to Have Stronger Relationships With Their End Clients
00:34 MIN
What Strategies Has Used to Reach Their Goals?
00:35 MIN
Which Wunderkind Products Does Use?
00:42 MIN
KIND Ads Allow's Users to Experience Their Ads in a Non-Intrusive, Respectful Way
00:33 MIN
How Else Has Wunderkind Helped Reach Their Goals?
00:24 MIN
Wunderkind Is a Very Seamless Ad Experience
00:25 MIN

Today's Guest

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Felix Zeng

|Head of Programmatic and Emerging Revenues, IBM Watson Advertising

Felix Zeng, Head of Programmatic and Emerging Revenues, IBM Watson Advertising: My name is Felix Zeng. I'm the head of programmatic and emerging revenues at IBM Watson Advertising. So I lead a sales team that drives programmatic revenues and also partnerships to drive emerging revenues such as affiliate newsletters, audio, anything that we want to experiment with and try to grow into a bigger revenue stream. The brand mission is really helping users get the knowledge that they need in whatever particular weather situation accurately and quickly. Our second mission is to use that data that we collect on the weather and provide insights to our advertisers and clients. Working at a company, it's a daily habit. It has a tremendous mission of keeping people safe. I think one of the things that people don't know about is how tornadoes they affect a very small area, but if your house is in the path of the tornado, your house could be completely destroyed. And having that most accurate information and alerts on your phone to let you know that, " Hey, you might need to evacuate," really essential. It's growing in leaps and bounds. It's grown much more bigger as part of IBM because IBM has infused us with a lot of the technology. To give you a good example, we provided obviously the best weather data. But IBM allow us to actually take that weather data and use it all over the globe. So even in places like India where there wasn't such a strong infrastructure, by using radio waves, we were able to provide accurate forecast to Indians who are living there. Our team's biggest goals is to drive revenues. But also secondly, to really help drive revenues in a way that's good for user experience. Understanding what users are coming to us for information that's valuable to their lives, but also they want to have a good experience on our site. So how do we optimize the site and app so that it provides an accurate experience while it also helps us with revenues. Well, the biggest challenge I think is you can see it in the latest couple of months. There hasn't been a lot of weather activity. It's been very, very nice, and so how do we actually drive revenues when there isn't that a lot of weather? It is something that's challenging for us right now. I think there are a lot of ways. What we found is a lot of our users found the data on our site very valuable and they're willing to subscribe to our products and subscriptions is one of the success stories for our company in this year. Secondly, what we found is a lot of content attracts our users. We just recently launched a newsletter and it's already grown by, I would say, significantly in the last four weeks as users are really interested in the type of content that we provide. And so we have found a lot of engagement outside of just checking the forecast and checking the weather. We power, I would say, over 90% of B2B industries. And even when I get on planes and I look at the forecast, that comes from the company. And it helps a lot of B2B industries actually function well, like logistics, like supply chain. Weather is one of the biggest impacts have you seen a lot of CEOs say that impacts their business. There are very few things you actually have to check every day, and this is one of those. And it's really phenomenal to work for a company that has a mission that really keeps users safe. It's additional impact beyond just driving revenues. The Wunderkind partnerships has been very good for both sides. It's been a strong partner for us in terms of working together. I also think that what we like about Wunderkind is the quality of advertising that comes through you guys, and we are looking towards more quality advertising on our sites. I'm going to answer those questions in both instances. What we've been doing is really trying to do more direct sales and increase the kind of relationships we have for our clients. I think a lot of clients can buy the standard units anywhere due to open exchange. It's really high impact units that really necessitate a salesperson, explain the value and explain the attribution to our clients. And so having the ability to have a more stronger relationship with our end clients with higher impact units is something that we're looking for. I think a lot of it came down to user experience and looking at the creatives. We track user experience very carefully and we see what are some of the responses they have to some of the advertising on our site. We actually take a very conservative approach and we feel that type of advertising's not right and align with our brands. We'd rather forgo the revenues and rather take that off the type of advertising. And so having that user feedback and also within our internal company having a gauge of what's right for our brand and what's not, it's important for how we evaluate partners. We started with just the exit triggers and we started thinking about ways that we can grow our partnership coming to the table with some creative ideas. Not all the ideas were accepted, but the ones that came through actually were good ideas and we actually activated. So right now, we're using the exit triggers. We're using the inactivity triggers. And so those are the primary two that we use right now. We like the type of advertising and the type of advertisers coming through them. I wouldn't say it's something where we have a positive gauge because users don't have that kind of feedback. But I can say that we haven't received complaints in terms of the type of advertising and type of advertisers that come through Wunderkind. What I'm most interested in is the type of creatives and the type of advertisers that comes through Wunderkind. I think they're very high quality advertisers and the different ways that you come up with new ideas. I think it's something just thinking about what you guys do and how you guys actually approach the site, I would say a minority that gets the ads, it's really at the appropriate instances and not in a constant bugging way, but in a manner where it's respectful. Working with you guys has helped us really think about what we want to do with our own products and working with our own sales teams to figure out what do we want to sell directly and what do we want to bring to the programmatic channels. So really selecting the right ads and the right type of ads that would be good for both advertisers and the site and our users, that is something that has been helpful for us. That's how we feel about it. We always load our content first, giving the users the information they need for the day or the week to plan their day. We actually load ads afterwards. But what we want to try to do is do a very quick ad load because again, nobody wants to go site and wait for the ad to load. We want an experience where the ads come quickly after the content, so it looks like a very seamless experience.