Audience Match Network

When I am buying a car, planning a vacation, looking for a new laptop or cell phone, buying a home, and a host of other activities, I am a lot more receptive to ads and offers that give me information and opportunities that are related to these efforts.

Every marketer has known this for years and every consumer realizes the value of these kinds of ads and offers.  But making this stuff work has always been incredibly hard.

Advertisers have been forced to invest in very small niche publications or direct marketing programs or "in store" programs to be able to target "in market" customers.  The holy grail would be to run these targeted campaigns in all forms of mass media; TV, Radio, Newspapers, online, etc.

Today, we’ve taken a small, but potentially important step in reaching that holy grail.  As the NY Times reported today, our portfolio company Tacoda launched the Audience Match Network at 5am this morning.

The idea is to build a cooperative network among publishers where the data about what people are interested in can be used to target advertising.  If you’ve recently been researching voice over internet services on the Internet, then USA Today can offer you Vonage phone service when you are reading the sports page.  If you’ve recently been visiting sites to find a new mortgage, The Tampa Tribune can offer you a better low cost mortgage when you are reading the front page.

The big trick is to do this without violating anyone’s privacy.  That is the reason why previous attempts to do this by Doubleclick and Engage failed. 

Tacoda built the Audience Match Network with privacy concerns at the forefront.  The Audience Match Network doesn’t store any data, it just makes real-time matches to serve targeted ads.  No personally indentified information is used in the network.  It’s all anonymous.  And Tacoda is committed to keeping it that way.

So the next time you are surfing the net and are hit with an offer that’s relevant, timely, and useful, instead of an ad that is of no value whatsover, you might have the Audience Match Network to thank for it.

#VC & Technology