Simpli.fi is excited to welcome the newest addition to our leadership team. Digital marketing strategist and technology start-up veteran Amber Benson has joined us as our new VP of Marketing. With more than 15 years industry experience as a consultant, client-side marketing executive and digital agency strategist, she brings her unique perspective and personality to our team. We sat down with her to learn why she decided to Simpli.fi. Q: You’ve worked on both the agency and client side of the business, as well as being a marketing consultant for major advertisers, why did you decide to join Simpli.fi? A: I really need to believe in the things that I market. As a results-oriented marketing executive who has managed multi-million dollar media budgets and as an agency strategist who had to utilize reports from cross-channel media campaigns to provide strategic insights to my clients, I know the frustration of not really knowing exactly who I was targeting, what a conversion was truly worth to me or, frankly, whether I could even trust the accuracy of the reporting I was provided. When you see how accessing unstructured data directly enables complete data visibility and campaign control in programmatic marketing, it’s really a bit of a no-brainer. Our technology has the potential to drive incredible effectiveness and efficiency into the way we manage cross-channel display, while delivering a more relevant advertisement to the consumer. All the stakeholders win. Q: What’s your take on a state of the programmatic marketing right now? A: I have an avid interest in strategic innovation. In the book, The Medici Effect, the authors describe how innovation always explodes where industries and ideas collide. Right now I think we are seeing a sort of Medici Effect in advertising technology. The convergence of big data and omnichannel CRM, enabled by programmatic, is opening the door for a sort of “golden age” of marketing effectiveness. Peppers & Rogers vision of true 1-to-1 Marketing isn’t really that far-fetched anymore. As we begin to integrate more first-party CRM, social media, e-commerce and point-of-sale data into our programmatic buys, the potential here is nothing short of a complete revolution in the way we market to consumers. First-generation RTB (real-time bidding) based on pre-packaged audience segments was a great leap forward, but unstructured data has the power to truly disrupt the programmatic marketplace. It raises the level of what marketers can, and should, expect in terms of targeting, performance, visibility and transparency from their demand-side platforms. Q: You’ve published industry articles about the role of brand trust and building personal relationships in marketing. How do you think that applies to programmatic marketing? A: Trust in marketing is really about connecting with people based on shared values. Relevant advertising communicates the shared values of dignity, understanding and respect to your customers—for their time, for their true needs and for their desires. Relevant advertising is a service, not a nuisance. Unstructured data allows us to build audiences based on the combination and correlation of individual data elements instead of stereotyping people into pre-packaged audience segments like “The Urban Warrior”. The Simpli.fi platform recognizes and allows for the sometimes irrational and serendipitous nature of intent and curiosity—and uses it to the mutual benefit of both consumers and advertisers. Unstructured data gives us a more nuanced picture of our audiences. That nuance can reveal more compelling consumer insights that we might not have been able to see with a packaged audience segment and gives us more precision when building look-alike models to extend reach. Simpli.fi has also taken a strong stand for campaign integrity, which is important to me. Through our partnerships with Risk IQ, the Online Trust Alliance, and our own proprietary campaign integrity features, we are able to protect brand equity and safeguard media investments against things like bots and malware. Because trust doesn’t just need to exist between brands and consumers, it needs to exist between advertisers and their vendors, as well. Q: What do you think about working at Simpli.fi HQ in Ft. Worth? A: As a native Texan, I love working in Cowtown! The city has such a unique and rich heritage as a center of commerce and creativity and we hope to continue that tradition with Simpli.fi. There’s a reason they call it the smallest big city in America—the folks are authentic, friendly and no one is going to look at me funny if I want to wear my Lucchesse boots to work! Follow Amber on Twitter @AdTechAmber or connect with her on LinkedIn. Read more of her thoughts on trust, transparency and programmatic marketing at MarketingLand.