I was at the recent Irish launch of AdRoll’s new product Prospecting, which is built to work side by side with AdRoll Retargeting to address the entire customer lifecycle, from awareness to conversion, and more information can be found here. Adam Berke the president of AdRoll was in Ireland to launch Prospecting and he told me a bit more about AdRoll, how they adapt and innovate with their customers help, and where their biggest market is.
For people who don’t know about Adroll what does it do?
Adroll is primarily known as a company that helps businesses leverage their existing customer data to drive more sales out of window shoppers and people that are browsing and so forth. One of the number one requests that we have gotten from our customers is that it’s all great, we are converting the traffic, that we are currently getting, but how do I grow my business, how do I find new users and how do I find new prospects. This product is all about helping marketers address other stages of the marketing funnel, from awareness to nurturing to conversion and eventually loyalty.
Who would be your competitors?
There’s a lot of folks out on the digital landscape and anyone who is in digital advertising is competing with folks like Google and Facebook who is building an impressive ad technology platform but as is traditionally the case with large technology companies they can only move so fast, they can only innovate so quickly and so there is lots of opportunities for other companies like us and there is a healthy ecosystem of earlier stage companies in ad technologies.
How do you guys innovate, every year do you decide to do a new product or update what you have?
It’s interesting as that’s a topic we spend a lot of time talking about and as we’re getting in to the end of the year, we’re going through our strategic planning process and our view is that you always need to carve out a certain amount of R&D resources that you are going to be really patient with and that you are not counting on to deliver direct revenue in the current fiscal year, but that they’re building the things some of which will fail but some of which will be early to market and drive the next phase of innovation in a year from now. So there is a big chunk of what we do that is enhancing the existing product offering, you know we’ve become the most widely used retargeting platform in the space and that’s because of our focus on building best in class product and we also always make sure we have an investment in emerging areas.
Prospecting would be an example of that, actually we started working on it over a year ago and we learned a lot, there was different iterations, some worked well and some didn’t work. One thing we do very well as a company is that we’re extremely honest with ourselves with respect to what is working and what isn’t, and it’s not viewed as a failure necessarily if something doesn’t work, as it’s truly a learning opportunity, and so we take that feedback, we listen to our customers very closely, we adapt, we innovate and overtime we develop a more effective product.
So when you adapt do you take time in that or is it something you think of overnight or as it happens or in a few months?
Well somethings happen quicker than others but we definitely believe in customer feedback on these types of things, a large group of basically a product council that our product engineering team will work closely with on new products that we’ll try out and that we’ll let them play around with. They are folks that will always want the newest stuff, are happy to use things that aren’t fully baked, and so we get back a lot of that feedback, and these things take cycles and we incorporate that feedback and stuff takes some time to build and we try again. The idea is to always be building something that will contribute revenue in twelve months.
Is your biggest market America, Asia or Europe?
It’s going to be global as the problems marketers face is are fairly universal. They want to reach new audiences and they want to convert more of their existing audiences. The objective of our platform is for it to be applicable in any region. We have active customers in one hundred and fifty countries already, and our tools are all translated and localised for the major markets, so yeah we think there’s opportunities globally.