Behavioral Targeting Pioneer Joins TACODA

One of the most interesting things about my experience over the past five years as an investor and board member of TACODA, the leading behavioral targeting ad network, is that much of what TACODA is doing was tried once before, in the late 90s, by a CMGI company called Engage.

Maybe Engage was too early with its profile driven advertising services. Maybe it got caught up in the bubble and bought too many other advertising businesses. Maybe the financial engineering done by CMGI did it in. The answer is probably all of the above.

Anyway, much of what Engage set out to do in the late 90s has been accomplished by TACODA and its competitors in the behavioral targeting (BT) sector of the internet advertising market. I expect that when you add up all the BT campaigns run this year, either directly on portals like Yahoo!, or online publications like The New York Times, or networks like TACODA, the total market will be north of $200mm and possibly much higher. Behavioral targeting has arrived in the mainstream of internet advertising. It works, media buyers understand it, and money is flowing into the category.

So it’s quite exciting to me that Daniel Jaye, a founder and CTO of Engage, has joined TACODA as its Executive Vice President, Product Management & Development. So much of what goes on in web 2.0 is refining and executing on ideas that were hatched in the first go round. It’s a great thing to see when someone who had the right idea but couldn’t get it to happen gets another chance. Welcome aboard Daniel.