We are happy to announce that Quantcast has acquired MakeGood, a software company focusing on reconciliation and reporting of digital advertising campaigns.
Founded in 2009 and based in Seattle, MakeGood started out with a simple mission: build great software to process and report on the success of ad campaigns.
The increasingly complex nature of real-time advertising means advertisers require better tools to properly understand and attribute ad campaign success and optimize their budgets. A significant portion of advertising technology development has focused on automation and optimization related to the delivery of individual impressions, but industry participants also face significant complexity in aggregating, organizing and reconciling campaign data to form a “single view of truth” in order to make critical business decisions.
In 2012 we surveyed the market, identifying and examining tools we might use to enhance our integration of campaign-related data and our associated reporting suite. We were very impressed by what the team at MakeGood had created. Their understanding of complex multi-system reconciliation and reporting was immense, and the elegant software they had created delivered a high degree of automation for this central industry challenge.
The MakeGood team and the software they have created will accelerate our ability to provide more in-depth and user-friendly reporting on ad campaigns delivered by Quantcast Advertise to our advertiser and media agency clients.
I’m delighted to welcome MakeGood CEO Jeff Coon and his colleagues to the Quantcast team. Here’s what Jeff had to say: “We couldn’t be more thrilled to be joining Quantcast and to bring the advantages of the MakeGood software suite to the industry through Quantcast’s broadly adopted products.”
We’ll continue to execute on our strategy of providing the most effective advertising and best understanding of digital audiences through our Advertise and Measure products. MakeGood will help us expand our capabilities and deliver exceptional advertising solutions that are easy to use to all of our customers.
Konrad Feldman, Co-founder and CEO
This is what happens when the Internet for a whole country is switched off. This chart shows traffic originating from Syria across the millions of web destinations directly measured by Quantcast. During the minute of 10:24 AM (UTC time zone) on November 29th, the off switch was hit.
Over the past several years, advertisers have increasingly benefitted from the impression-by-impression efficiency and effectiveness afforded by real-time bidding (RTB) across ad exchanges. At Quantcast, we believe that the same trends powering RTB growth – the ability to apply big data directly to impression-level targeting decisions – can also be used to help premium publishers bring the power of precision audience delivery to brand advertisers within their own premium ad environments and through their direct sales teams.
Today, we’re announcing an important investment in this vision with the launch of a new self-service interface for our brand targeting solution, Quantcast Advertise for Branding. This dashboard provides a new level of transparency for participating publishers and advertisers and allows them to transact directly based on specified audiences.
The new dashboard extends the current capabilities of our brand targeting solution, which applies advanced predictive modeling to high-value audience segments to pinpoint similar consumers across the web at significant scale. Quantcast then integrates directly with publishers at the ad server level to inform ad delivery in real time and allow publishers to satisfy new advertiser demand. Audience segments offered via this solution, and featured in today’s dashboard release, include:
• Demographics: Segments for age, gender, parents, education, income, and more
• Spendographics: High-value audience segments modeled from premium purchase data
• Custom Advertiser Segments: Custom audience segments built from predictive modeling, based on an advertiser’s unique audience
With the launch of this new dashboard, our publisher partners can better offer and deliver highly relevant audiences to brand advertisers. The dashboard helps publishers understand the potential scale of each Quantcast audience segment across their site(s), enabling better inventory packaging and a broader range of advertiser requests that can be satisfied. Publishers can also use the dashboard to prospect new advertising clients by gaining visibility into the extent to which advertisers’ custom audience segments can be delivered from within their inventory. Participating advertisers can buy their exact audiences at scale from the publishers of their choice to maximize their reach within premium environments.
Quantcast Advertise publisher partners such as Warner Bros., AccuWeather, SAY Media, Adap.tv and more, are already using this new dashboard to better capitalize on audience selling opportunities across their sites and connect with Quantcast advertisers. We’re enthusiastic about the potential of connecting real-time data, modeling, and ad delivery, and our first self-serve dashboard for Quantcast Advertise will make it easier for the Quantcast community to power more relevant advertising for advertisers, publishers, and consumers.Posted by Konrad Feldman, Co-Founder & CEO, 11/15/12
At Quantcast we routinely see the effect of major Internet outages, but we also see the impact of major outside events. This week Hurricane Sandy blasted her way across New Jersey, New York and other states, causing major destruction to people’s lives, and major infrastructure issues in the area. Media coverage of the hurricane was abundant, and so, on Sunday and Monday people clearly wanted to know more. In the two days leading up to the storm, this caused an increase in traffic between 10% and 20% over the previous week from the New York City area.
After the storm, millions of people were left without power, and so they did not use the Internet as they normally would have. This was reflected in a 50% to 60% drop in Internet traffic from the affected areas. While Con Ed hopes to restore power in Manhattan by the end of the weekend, some unlucky people will not have power restored for up to 10 days.
Hurricane Sandy was a strong and disastrous storm that affected over 20 states and left significant destruction in its wake. With an office in NY and many friends and loved ones on the east coast, our thoughts and prayers are with those whose lives were affected.
Quantcast, like a lot of companies, monitored Hurricane Sandy closely as it approached New York. In support of our business, we operate multiple datacenters spread out all over the United States, including a pair in Manhattan. As it became clear there was a storm surge approaching, our datacenter team began monitoring things even more closely. We have a lot of redundancy in place to immediately take over in the event we need to move traffic from one data center to another, however, you can never be 100 percent sure things will work correctly.
The first indication that we might need to put our disaster plan in place was late on Monday (Pacific time), when our provider informed us that the 75 Broad Street datacenter had flooded, causing the fuel pumps not to work. Only a few hours worth of fuel remained. Our plan was to move traffic from there and turn the servers off. We quickly did this, doing our small bit to help extend the time the fuel reserves would last. Eventually the facility lost power late on Tuesday morning and the power outage lasted approximately 12 hours.
Things were running well given the circumstances. We still had the 75 Broad Street location offline, and we were closely monitoring availability of all our platforms. On Tuesday night everything seemed to be improving, and our operations team went to bed content. We had received notification that the 75 Broad Street was coming back online, and all our other datacenters were unaffected. We intended to bring the 75 Broad Street facility back online on Wednesday.
Unfortunately, Sandy hadn’t had enough — shortly after 2 a.m. the fuel pump of our other New York location failed, causing that datacenter to lose power. Our failover infrastructure instantly kicked in, shifting traffic to other East Coast facilities, and things continued to perform well. Our on-call engineers immediately worked on bringing the 75 Broad Street location online (to bring back a layer of redundancy), only for it to become unreachable at 2.30 a.m. At that point we realized that it was connected through the second location, and presumably the battery backup had failed — never an ideal situation.
Despite the loss of multiple major datacenters, due to careful planning, traffic flowed to our other production datacenters (we operate more than a dozen fully redundant locations in the United States) with no loss of traffic.
The biggest impact on the company is the temporary outage of the New York office, which is in the area that suffered a complete blackout. Fortunately, all employees in New York are safe and accounted for, and working remotely until the office power and connectivity are restored.
As with anything, things change rapidly. Currently, all our datacenters are back online (some on generator power) and our fully redundant infrastructure is back to full strength. Equally, we have lessons to learn:
1. Always double-check exactly where the failure points are — we had a previously unknown failure point where one datacenter could take out the other.
2. Always make sure you are receiving facility notifications.
3. Plan for the worst case, hope for the best. While we had actually discussed the impact of hurricanes on our infrastructure prior, we will incorporate more disaster planning into our infrastructure strategy going forward.
As an aside, many thanks and credit to everyone working at our Peer1 facility at 75 Broad Street — they have kept everything running (mostly), by carrying fuel up 17 flights of stairs to feed the generator. While they have had a small amount of downtime related to cooling, we are very impressed with the lengths they have gone to in order to reduce any downtime to a minimum.Posted by Crispin Flowerday, 11/2/12
We’re excited to be included in WIRED’s roundup of the 10 San Francisco Tech Companies You Wish You Worked For this week, among some other innovators in the city.
This accolade comes on the heels of a recent report by Wealthfront, where they named Quantcast as one of the 48 Hot Tech Companies to Build a Career.
At Quantcast, we believe in creating an environment where innovation thrives, creating industry leading products, and employees are able to see the impact of their work.
We are tireless in our effort to hire the best and the brightest. If this sounds like you, check out our careers page for a full listing of our open positions. We hope you’ll be joining us soon!
Last week, we began breaking out mobile Web usage by iPad and iPhone for publishers via our Quantcast Measurement product. This builds on our recent release of Web usage by mobile platforms such as iOS and Android. Because of the huge and growing popularity of both the iPhone and iPad, we wanted to provide our publishers with insights into how their web properties fared specifically on both devices. These new metrics are also available publicly for all websites directly measured by Quantcast, known as Quantified publishers. Note that these reports cover users accessing Web sites from a browser on their iOS devices, rather than mobile applications.
Overall, we noticed a significant amount of mobile Web media consumption taking place via the iPad. Looking across the millions of Web properties Quantcast measures in the US, 31% of mobile web traffic comes from iPads. After examining site-level data, we noted some other surprising and interesting trends. For example, the proportion of iPad and iPhone usage can vary dramatically. The Hollywood Reporter gets 41% of its monthly US iOS traffic from iPad devices, Time is even more iPad-heavy with 70% of its US mobile web users preferring the iPad experience and Dailymotion sees an incredible 78% of its iOS mobile Web users accessing the site from iPads.
We also analyzed our Quantified publishers to see which properties had garnered the largest mobile Web audiences via the iPad in the past month. Magazine websites topped our rankings , as well as dating and blogging sites. Perhaps most surprising was that the Chinese-language community portal Wenxuecity.com received the bulk of its mobile web traffic from the United States. Again, The Huffington Post was a top contender for overall iPad reach as well as for it’s proportion of iPad usage.
We invite you to explore Quantcast’s mobile Web offerings further. There are a lot of interesting trends and websites to be discovered. If you are a website owner, you can learn more about our free measurement service here.
Posted by Scott Murff, Product Manager
Zac Johnson of PPC recently authored a blog post describing how to start an effective Facebook Ads campaign using demographics which appear in audience profiles on quantcast.com (see example). He suggests using these free demographic reports to determine the composition of an audience as you design an accurate campaign to reach that audience.
Quantcast offers demographic reports for publishers who choose to Quantify their properties. This service is entirely free.
Quantcast audience profiles include a unique and powerful report entitled “Audience Also Likes”. It describes the affinities which an audience has for other kinds of Internet content. You can get these reports for your own web property for free as part of Quantcast Measurement.
To access this information, go to Quantcast.com. In the search box, type in your website (e.g. example.com) and click Search. Your audience profile appears. In the right column, click Lifestyle.
The report is broken down into two sections: Affinity and Similar Audience. Affinity shows categories of Internet content that the audience is drawn to. For example, if an audience has a index of 7.8x for “humor”, this means that a visitor to this site is 7.8 times more likely to visit humor-themed sites than the average Internet user. Similar Audience shows specific sites the audience is likely to visit by category. Click a category (example “humor”) to show specific humor-themed sites (example: “collegehumor.com”) that this audience is likely to frequent.