Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Start-Up Watch COD: Accordant Media Simplifies RTB For Brands and Agencies

Over the past couple of years, we’ve seen many of the leading players in the digital agency business create trading desks and other exchange-based media solutions to help their clients capitalize on this importance category of digital media. These sorts of programs and efforts require significant resources to create and manage – resources in the forms of people, expertise, and cold hard cash.

Holding companies seemed to lead in this area because the investment costs to create these capabilities can be spread across many agencies brands and client engagements. But how can other agencies deliver RTB media services?

A start-up called Accordant Media was formed to do just that. The idea behind Accordant is to provide a managed trading desk solution for agencies reluctant to create their own home-grown solutions for RTB. Its founders, whom I have known for many years, appear to be on to a successful formula.

Accordant provides a broad range of services from which agencies can choose to capture the benefits of RTB in a manner that works for them.

In my view, the core of their value proposition comes from the very real truth that success in RTB is definitely not a doddle. Lots of businesses have leapt into the space only to find that it takes real focus and great people to realize the potential benefits. Those that have made real commitment have succeeded. Those that haven’t do not get the results they hoped for.

Using Accordant, agencies can leverage the benefits of THEIR team’s deep understanding of the space and what it takes to deliver the best possible results. From strategic services to translate objectives into plans, to precise audience definition and optimization, to management of platforms and reporting, Accordant uses technology, methodology and expertise to deliver better results.

Transparency is central to the appeal of RTB solutions, and Accordant offers to their clients in a variety of ways:

•Costs and fees to purchase media are always transparent
•Clients have access to activity and performance reporting at all times
•Ongoing development of deep audience insights through first and third party data
•Services to help drive better performance from sites/conversion funnels
•Strategies and programs to improve the synergies between Search and Display
Accordant purchases the full range of digital media through RTB, from Display to Search, Video, Social, and Mobile. They can also perform site audits to help maximize conversions once consumers respond to the digital media that have been so efficiently purchased

So what are Accordant’s intentions? For some agencies, the idea of involving another company with their clients is anathema. But stealing your clients isn’t what they are about. They are focused on providing a quantitative buying, reporting, and optimization solution, not becoming a full service agency. And these are good people, people.

You have a number of options when you consider RTB and how your agency or brand should respond to the opportunity. Accordant is growing because the resources and commitment required to drive the best results aren’t in many companies’ sweet spot. For many media teams, the opportunity to focus on their own expertise – in strategic thinking and planning – means that the decision to outsource is a relatively easy one. Indeed, for most agencies, sustainable value doesn’t come from our activity, but rather our thinking. By shifting some of the executional aspects of the business to others, they may find that the unique value that we can offer clients increases.

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