GroupM’s mPlatform – Fading into the background or viable platform?

GroupM’s mPlatform – Fading into the background or viable platform?

Digiday highlighted  mPlatform  which it says is “fading into the background” at WPP.    mPlatform is and still could be a viable platform for WPP providing they invest more in sourcing mobile data directly in a GDPR compliant manner vs.data soup from a bunch of vendors.

GroupM launched its data and tech division mPlatform with great fanfare in 2016, billing it as an alternative to Google and Facebook that would allow advertisers to link different data assets in order to track and target people online. Three years later, the promise of the division has petered out, with talk centering more on missed opportunities than growth potential…But three years on, mPlatform has faded into the background at GroupM. It’s telling that during WPP’s latest earnings call, CEO Mark Read hailed the growth of Xaxis in the quarter but didn’t mention mPlatform. Changes behind the scenes also suggest GroupM’s priorities have shifted away from mPlatform.

Brian Gleason

Brian Gleason – GroupM

Its CEO, Brian Gleason, was promoted last year to GroupM’s Performance Media Group, which encompasses many of the same businesses mPlatform did. Now, mPlatform is headed by GroupM’s global chief product officer, Amit Seth. WPP insiders say the division is no longer a key part of the holding company’s programmatic strategy.

“Consumer identity has always been a core focus of mPlatform, as knowing something about a consumer and their proclivities inevitably assists in deciding target audiences and how to message those audiences. The advertising industry’s demand for data to build brands and sell more product is one of the reasons GroupM continues to vigorously educate the market about our data practices. We have put in place a strong consumer rights practice where we give consumers full access and ownership rights to revoke the data we capture about them. Our expertise in evaluating data sources is increasingly important to clients with the increasing focus on consumer privacy and regulation.”

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Data from WPP businesses like Kantar and Millward Brown would be linked to third-party data and data owned by advertisers via the MiD it hoped would one day rival consumer identifiers from Google and Facebook. The problem for mPlatform was sourcing data after the arrival of the GDPR. For it to work to its potential, mPlatform had to tap into third-party data from vendors and app owners, which under the GDPR would require those businesses to explicitly inform all their users that their data is being shared when they opt in to a service. That’s a hard model to scale when not every business that’s trading data can get the consent to do so.

Given Dentsu Aegis’ $1.5 billion acquisition of Merkle in 2016, IPG’s $2.3 billion purchase of Acxiom two years later and Publicis’ $.4.4 billion buy of Epsilon earlier this year, GroupM arguably had the right idea when it decided to buy into data and ad tech stacks with mPlatform. But the arrival of GDPR alongside a spike in advertisers who thought they could do what mPlatform pitched in-house or with other ad tech vendors made it hard for that idea to become anything more.

Bring Your Own Data – Twitter joins Facebook in removing 3rd Party Data from platform

Bring Your Own Data – Twitter joins Facebook in removing 3rd Party Data from platform

According to a report by WSJ, “Twitter plans to remove 3rd party data sources from its ad-buying system, becoming the latest tech company to put more distance between itself and third-party consumer data providers.  The company currently offers data from outside firms to help advertisers target users on its platform, but early next year the company will end that integration and require advertisers to buy data on their own.”

Skydeo CEO Mike Ford  said, “This is great news for data companies that have relationships with advertisers, agencies and who have sourced data with consumer consent.  We have been a proponent of “Bring Your Own Data” since we started the company.”   Skydeo works directly with advertisers and agencies to provide privacy-compliant, custom audience segments that can be activated directly in Twitter, Facebook and other ad platforms.

john lee merkle dentsu

John Lee, Dentsu Merkle

It would appear that Twitter, like Facebook, is seeking to distance themselves from the perceived risks associated with third-party data,” John Lee, chief product and data officer at Dentsu Aegis agency Merkle, said. “By requiring advertisers to upload the data from their first-party seat, these platforms are ensuring that advertisers, not the platform or agency, is taking the accountability for the provenance and permissibility of the data they are injecting.”

 

Megan Pagliuca

Megan Pagliuca, Chief Data Officer

Megan Pagliuca, chief data officer at the ad-buying agency Hearts & Science, said Facebook’s move was good because clients should take responsibility for their own data strategy and build their own custom segments. “While it was a little inconvenient process-wise, we think it was the right thing strategically for our clients and business,” she said.

Closer relationships with data providers could push advertisers to create more granular audience targets instead of relying on “off-the-shelf” segments offered through Twitter, Ms. Pagliuca said. That could lessen the direct competition for certain audiences and potentially reduce costs.

 

Startup Autobahn:  Mercedes, Porsche & Skydeo

Startup Autobahn: Mercedes, Porsche & Skydeo

Skydeo Attends Startup AutoBahn in Stuttgart

Redefine Your Company Based on the Company You Keep

Skydeo COO Eric Simon presented Skydeo’s AppGraph & PlacesGraph solutions for a packed house at Mercedes Arena in Stuttgart today.  Skydeo’s unique mobile insights helps auto makers better understand their car buyers mobile interests and behaviors in different regions around the globe.

Skydeo's Eric Simon presenting in German at Startup Autobahn.

Skydeo’s Eric Simon presenting in German at Startup Autobahn.

STARTUP AUTOBAHN is the ultimate innovation platform that unites global young tech companies with the unrivalled tech expertise of Silicon Valley and the best of German engineering.  We are a neutral innovation platform moderating an in-depth and curated collaboration between our partners from the industry and young tech companies. Our network of investment firms and mentors further helps the growth of tech companies. Our home is Stuttgart – the birthplace of the automobile, one of the leading IP regions of the world, and a hub of business, engineering, and groundbreaking inventions.

Our namesake is the high-speed German highway – the only one in the world without a speed limit. And just like the Autobahn, STARTUP AUTOBAHN is about accelerating joint projects between young tech companies and our corporate partners.

Skydeo participated in the Marketing and Sales groups discussions regarding

  • Advanced Advertising
  • Performance Marketing
  • Customer Experience
  • Connection of Online and Offline Commerce

STARTUP AUTOBAHN partners and attendees included: Plug & Play, Daimler, Porsche, Hewlett Packard Enterprise, DXC Technology, BASF, ZF Friedrichshafen, Deutsche Post DHL Group, Webasto, Murata, HELLA, BENTELER, The Linde Group, AGC Glass, Wieland, PostNL, Jardines Matheson, CEPSA, and Covea.

Dropbox vs. Spotify IPO: App Intelligence – Alternative Data

Dropbox vs. Spotify IPO: App Intelligence – Alternative Data

Dropbox and Spotify going public is good news for the mobile marketplace so we decided to compare the two apps and their users in Skydeo. Skydeo surveyed over 250 million users from our panel of 875 million uniques.   We also tracked new app downloads during October & November 2017 for both sets of apps.

  • 12% of Dropbox users had Spotify.
  • Dropbox users were 48% more likely to have Spotify installed than non-Dropbox users
  • 22% of Spotify users had Dropbox.
  • Spotify users were 57% more likely to have Dropbox installed than non-Spotify users.

Skydeo DeviceMap

Dropbox and Spotify Users in US by Carrier

Dropbox and Spotify Users in US by Carrier

According to the Dropbox S-1

Our future growth could be harmed if we fail to attract new users or convert registered users to paying users.

We must continually add new users to grow our business beyond our current user base and to replace users who choose not to continue to use our platform. Historically, our revenue has been driven by our self­ serve model, and we generate more than 90% of our revenue from self­serve channels. Any decrease in user satisfaction with our products or support could harm our brand, word ­of ­mouth referrals, and ability to grow.

Additionally, many of our users initially access our platform free of charge. We strive to demonstrate the value of our platform to our registered users, thereby encouraging them to convert to paying users through in­ product prompts and notifications, and time­ limited trials of paid subscription plans. As of December 31, 2017, we served over 500 million registered users but only 11 million paying users. The actual number of unique users is lower than we report as one person may register more than once for our platform. As a result, we have fewer unique registered users that we may be able to convert to paying users. A majority of our registered users may never convert to a paid subscription to our platform.

In addition, our user growth rate may slow in the future as our market penetration rates increase and we turn our focus to converting registered users to paying users rather than growing the total number of registered users. If we are not able to continue to expand our user base or fail to convert our registered users to paying users, demand for our paid services and our revenue may grow more slowly than expected or decline.

Based on Dropbox new app downloads during October & November, their ability to attract new users is strong.  It will be interesting to see if the IPO hype increases new downloads over time.

Skydeo AppGraph Insights

Dropbox vs SpotifyAccording Jeff Bussgang, VC and HBS Lecturer :

Dropbox has a magical business model and the data in the S-1 proves it. The company reports that “we generate over 90% of our revenue from self-serve channels”. Think about that for a minute. The free product is so attractive that it drives massive adoption and the conversion from free to paid is so obvious and smooth (more usage leads to more storage leads to paid product) that the company has a customer acquisition engine that derives from a simply great product and a compelling value proposition. Forget sales and marketing, at Dropbox, the product itself is a massively effective and efficient customer acquisition machine.

Does it cost too much to service all these free customers? Happily, Dropbox is following a cost curve of declining storage and cloud costs. Gross margins have soared from 33% in 2015 to 54% in 2016 to 67% in 2017. If a CEO tells you she is going to increase gross margins from 33% to 67% in two years on a $1 billion revenue business, you would check her in to an insane asylum. Dropbox did it easily.

Spotify Files for IPO

Skydeo PlacesGraph

 Locations of Spotify Users

Locations of Spotify Users

Locations of Dropbox Users

Locations of Dropbox Users

Uber Driver vs. Lyft Driver  Market Share by Skydeo

Uber Driver vs. Lyft Driver Market Share by Skydeo

Lyft recently raised $1.5 Billion to grow their ride sharing business and steal market share from Uber, the incumbent in the space.  A key factor in driving rides and revenue is the number of drivers available or “Share of Drivers”.    Skydeo surveyed ride sharing apps, analyzed each group of users and the overlap between them.   We discuss these results in an Uber at CES in Las Vegas with a driver of both Lyft and Uber.

In a Skydeo AppGraph survey of Lyft Drivers, 65% of Lyft Drivers also used the Uber Driver app.   In comparison, just 3.9% of all Uber Drivers also use Lyft Driver.

Lyft certainly has room to grow by stealing market share from Uber Drivers or at least co-existing with those drivers.  Uber remains the market leader in terms of gross Uber Drivers and Riders.

Lyft Driver - Uber Driver Comparison

Lyft Driver – Uber Driver Overlap Analysis

Interested in competitive analysis or targeting for your company?  Contact Skydeo today

How to Target Mobile App Users in Google Adwords

How to Target Mobile App Users in Google Adwords

Google Adwords Remarketing enables advertisers to target app users (Apple IDFA or Android Ad ID lists) and CRM data (email lists) directly via the Adwords interface.  Skydeo AppGraph enables advertisers to use custom audience lists (IDFA/AAID) for targeting users directly through Adwords.   While technologically the same implementation- using Skydeo custom audiences lets advertisers target prospects not just existing app users or website visitors.   For marketers looking to conquest competitors or  tailor creatives to specific audience attributes  this feature can drive huge performance returns.

How do I target mobile ad ids in Google?

  1.  Sign in to AdWords
  2. Click Shared Library.
  3. Click Audiences.

4. Click Mobile App Users

5. Click upload advertising IDs/IDFAs

6. Select the CSV file containing your custom audience list

Requirements
File uses the .csv format and is no more than 100MB
Android advertising IDs or iOS IDFAs are listed one per line

7. Name your file.

8. You may need to select an app (choose your own or another).

9. Include a description of the custom audience.

10. Upload the list.

11. Add your “Mobile app users” list to your campaign or start a new campaign.

12. To show ads on the Display Network, add your list to a “Display Network only” campaign.

13. Open the campaign, click the Display Network tab and click + Targeting
14. Choose your campaign and ad group.
15. Click “Add targeting” and select “Interests and remarketing,” then click “Remarketing lists” and select a list.
16. Click Save

Contact Skydeo today to for a custom mobile audience for your data-driven marketing.