Struq's Andrew Morsy On The Company's Place In The Eco-System, Its Relationship With Agencies, & Staying Ahead Of Retargeting Commoditisation

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Andrew Morsy is Sales Director at Struq. Here he discusses the Struq personalised targeting solution, the company’s relationship with agencies and how Struq is staying ahead of the comoditisation of the retargeting market.

Agencies are beginning to adopt retargeting now as part of their model. What is Struq’s view on this adopted agency business model?

Retargeting is critical for advertisers as it converts browsers into paying customers, lengthens customer lifetime value and increases revenue per user. Agency adoption helps educate clients about the power of ad personalisation – that in order to persuade users to buy your product or service, it is imperative you deliver a personalised relevant ad to persuade that user. That has fuelled the adoption of Personalized Video and Personalized Pretargeting (advertisers acquiring new users) by advertisers and agencies.

Can companies like Struq really work with agencies? You clearly have client direct relationships in the ecom space? Aren’t you competition for the agencies?

Agencies are experts at what they do – they are aligned to plan and buy media as effectively as possible for advertisers.

Struq’s technology enables advertisers to acquire users at half the cost of any other retargeting provider.

As a result, the majority of Struq’s business is through media agencies as they seek to provide the most efficient means to spend money that results in post-click revenue for their clients.

Does Struq really need to work with agencies? Clearly the client direct relationship has paid serious dividends? Why would Struq need to work with agencies?

Struq powers post-click performance across the marketing funnel for Marketing Directors and Media Buyers alike. Both the Media Buyer and the Marketing Director have the same objective, to persuade users to buy products at the lowest possible cost.

Struq enables media agencies and clients direct to buy Personalized Video and Personalized Display advertising that delivers lucrative post-click revenue.

Retargeting is becoming an increasingly commoditised product – how is Struq differentiating itself from the competition?

Struq works solely with the largest brands in the verticals of ecommerce, retail, finance and travel across 19 markets. All of these brands have tried multiple vendors and continue to work with Struq solely because Struq automates the delivery of a post-click CPA because we understand the value of a user and what makes a user click and buy.

Struq ascertains which users are valuable to an advertiser. We then target the right users to hit an advertiser’s post-click CPA/COS/ROI target with fully personalised creative. Struq then provides unique insight to clients, enabling advertisers to understand which products, creative elements, publishers, etc. drove post-click performance for them (which they then frequently leverage across their other marketing activity).

Struq has applied our core targeting technology across display and video to deliver lucrative post-click performance across the marketing funnel for advertisers.

Is Struq’s technology proprietary and how do you compete against the growing number of DSPs offering dynamic creative solutions – particularly Invite which, according to rumours, will have a dynamic creative component (Teracent) built into its new iteration?

Unlike the majority of the RTB market, Struq has built its own DSP, Bid Optimisation Engine, Recommendation Engine and Dynamic Creative Optimisation Engine. These needed to be proprietary to enable the data to be extensible so that we could extract the value out of data to make user level decisions. Struq determines the display ad content, media placement, targeting criteria and bid price in real time based on data intelligence. The result is that Struq acquires a user at half the cost of any other video, display or retargeting provider.

Struq is looking to position itself as the leading Ad Personalization Company in the market. Can you talk to us in more detail what ad Personalization really is?

Advertising is a communication to persuade users to buy a product or service. Struq is transforming that communication from a generic push communication to a relevant personalised communication.

Personalised Retargeting by Struq showed that by delivering relevant ads to consumers, they were 12 times more likely to click and buy a product or service. Ad personalization breaks the one-size-fits-all paradigm, it is about making each ad both personal and relevant to each user. Ultimately, it leads to greater post-click revenue for advertisers, higher quality of ads for publishers and a much better experience for end users.

Struq is now bringing that level of performance to advertisers across a user’s entire decision making process.

You are rolling new products around video. Can you tell us a more about these new products? Are you simply launching these products in response to what Brainient has starting offering in the market?

Struq’s core purpose is serving personalized, relevant, performance-driven ads to users.

Struq is a single point for advertisers to persuade users at every stage of the buying process across any channel. Struq is able to both identify new prospective customers and convert prospective customers at scale through personalised display and video. Advertisers need to use an integrated offering across channels to gain understanding and insight into what drives customers to buy their products.

We have applied our core targeting technology across these mediums to deliver lucrative post-click performance across the marketing funnel for advertisers.

How have you seen the market evolve over the past 12 months and where do you see it heading in 2012?

The economic climate is bleak for 2012. Advertisers need people to click and buy products through their advertising to justify spending money on marketing in a tough economic climate. Struq’s Personalised Video and Display ads make ads relevant to consumers, which enables advertisers to make on average £20 in post click revenue for every pound spent. Struq’s Personalized products seek to meet the needs of advertisers in a tough economic climate.

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Comments


  • A. Schwibbe

    £1 spend makes £20 post click revenue sounds good.
    Does this calculation include avg. return rate?
    Just curious…

  • MoonMan

    In fairness to Struq, they never seem to deviate from their sales pitch, even on here where people see it for what it is. It’s always entertaining to hear how Struq can generate £9,000 with every 20p spent with them, or whatever fantasy figures they’re using this month. 

    They say it’s ‘half the cost’ of any other provider – where do they get this data from?  Perhaps Exchangewire could organise an open challenge where Struq could go head to head with their competitors?

    On the unique proposition, all I saw was an explanation of what retargeting is, but I think that could be applied to a lot of the companies in the space. On the question of competing with agencies, the same question could be asked of the tech companies who are working with agencies and with advertisers.

  • Anonymous

    MoonMan, I think the idea of an “optimisation” test challenge would be very interesting – and actually has merit.  If a client will volunteer, ExchangeWire would happily facilitate a (personalised) re-targeting shoot-out…

  • http://twitter.com/ProfessorHulk Professor Hulk

    I think an “optimisation” test would be good.

    Wider theories about retargeters are around inventory quality and thats a big variable to not cover off in test. Would need transparency though.

  • http://twitter.com/dhsaxena Dheeraj Saxena

    What will this ‘shoot-out’ involve to be more precise? My interest in this would probably not be so much as to who wins but more around do I really get my money’s worth and can I really pin point the impact of Personalized Display re-targeting in a Multi-touch digital campaign where visitors are exposed to anything and everything from PPC ads to Social Media stimulus. There would need to be a list of critical success factors that relate to an advertiser’s objectives. If someone has a method of how my 20p investment can be turned into a 9 grand return, please reach out and I will happily consider hosting the shoot-out

  • MediaMonkey

    This is a statement of fact by Struq :: “The result is that Struq acquires a user at half the cost of any other video, display or retargeting provider.” Can Struq please provide the source for this statement and if not withdraw the statement as if not independently verifiable it is BS.

    This is a statement of fact by Struq :: “Struq’s Personalised Video and Display ads make ads relevant to consumers, which enables advertisers to make on average £20 in post click revenue for every pound spent” Can Struq please provide the source for this statement and if not withdraw the statement as if not independently verifiable it is BS.

    Why do companies allow people of this limited experience near ExchangeWire?  

    Struq, you are not half the price of anyone else, you do not return £20 per £1 spent. I know this to be fact, I know the majority of agencies will stand against you and say you deliver terrible results, with incredibly poor customer service and far worse client retention and in fact Struqs reason for being is to extract profit from the supply chain like everyone else. Why will no one turn around and say they are in business to make money, we do this buy being great at x, y & z and we’re brilliant at it?

  • Anonymous

    As I said: happy to facilitate a shoot-out…

  • Anonymous

    MediaMonkey, I appreciate the commentary.  We are a broad church here as you know.  Struq decided to run the piece, which probably didn’t properly answer any of the questions posed in the interview. 

    While it’s not really editorial policy (well we generally have no BS position) to run overtly sales-focused pieces, Struq remain a big player in the retargeting market.  And as such, should have the opportunity to discuss their offering.

    On your valid point on arbitrage, it’s a tactic used by many ad tech companies.  Optimising a CPC metric against a CPM buy is a license to print “mad cash”.  Everyone with half-a-brain in this industry realises this.  But then if they are delivering for the client against pre-agreed KPIs, then good for them.

    I just wonder when upper-funnel buys become a requisite by client direct, how will the retargeters fare.  Just one point to think about.    

  • MediaMonkey

    I accept what you say. What I don’t understand is why companies let people with clearly no “company building” experience be interviewed by a relative veteran of the industry when they’ve clearly been out of a large company for a limited amount of time. No offence intended for Mr Morsy but saying catch-all lines like “Unlike the majority of the RTB market, Struq has built its own DSP, Bid Optimisation Engine, Recommendation Engine and Dynamic Creative Optimisation Engine. These needed to be proprietary to enable the data to be extensible so that we could extract the value out of data to make user level decisions.” no shit Mr Morsy, name for me 3 players in the RTB game that have not got proprietary solutions (I can, you can but can he, no.) and you may get better traction from cynical media followers such as myself with lines that are essentially “we’re really cool and I’ve learned some new acronyms and I can use them in a paragraph. This is one of things this industry accepts and it shouldn’t – parrots. Go into any agency or buying-house and see how many people actual know what they’re on about and it’s surprising. You have muppet buyers in the GpM businesses beating up their own businesses “cause that’s how we’re told to do it” rather than thinking. “wait, I’ll listen to what this person has to say and judge for myself.” Here’s an example – audience provider goes into Agency A and lays out is wares. Agency A says “out internal trading desk can do that” Audience provider asks “really, are you sure, have you asked them the very questions I have given you answers for here?” Agency A “well, no, it says they can and we have to use them anyway cause, well, we have to”

    You tell me who’s interests are best being served…

  • MediaMonkey

    ps. actually, really nice picture Mr Morsy, are you single?

  • A. Schwibbe

    I am in for the shoot-out!

  • Sam Barnett

     

    My name is Sam Barnett and I am the CEO of Struq and I would
    like to clarify a few points.

    We built Struq as a place of innovation – that would change
    advertising for the benefit of advertisers through post click performance.

    We passionately believe in building the best technology to
    continually meet our advertiser’s needs of delivering post click performance.
    We are more than willing to stand behind what we say and participate in the shoot-out.
    I would hope all those that comment are willing to stand behind what they say
    and take part in a transparent test that would be beneficial for the entire
    industry.

    We continue to work with the largest advertisers and are extremely
    focused on continually improving our products and services for our clients. If
    anyone else would like to discuss any of this article, any of Struq’s figures
    and stats in more detail, or has any other suggestion, please do drop me an
    email at sam (at) struq.com.

    Andrew Morsy was the 5th person at Struq (In the UK, we will
    be 50 people at the end of this month), and has huge experience in a fast
    growth technology business where the Engineers, Scientific Engineers and Data
    Engineers sit only metres away from him – enabling Andrew to continuously contribute
    to how our technology can better meet the needs of our clients.

    I don’t know how to contact you MediaMonkey as you are posting
    anonymously, but if you feel there is anything you’d like to discuss or that we
    could improve, please do get in touch with me at sam (at) struq.com.

    I agree with the point raised that it would be better if we
    all published stats that we’re audited – we’ll certainly be working on that. If
    you have any other suggestions you would like to share with me, please do get
    in touch sam (at) struq.com.

    Thanks and all the very best.

    Sam

  • Anonymous

    Nicely put, Sam.

  • A. Schwibbe

    Still in for the shoot-out :)

  • surfer69

    mediamonkey – you are the muppet here