Spreading the Digital Dividends of Programmatic to More People and Markets: NMI in Mexico

November 19, 2018 — by Elise James-Decruise


MediaMath is committed to driving deeper the digital dividends of programmatic advertising to a more diverse and inclusive group of people at home and abroad.  It is the right thing to do and presents limitless potential for growth. It is also a good thing to do for a world hungry for the innovation, jobs and prosperity that the digital economy can drive.

We are blessed that our company, employees and sector have benefited from the development and exponential growth of programmatic, automated, digital marketing in the United States. But from the beginning, though born in America, we have aimed to have a global footprint, including in a number of growing markets in Latin America. We want people everywhere to share in the bounty that data-driven digital marketing can create as a sector and as a tool used economy-wide to sell goods and services and, in turn, create jobs and sustain communities.

In pursuit of that mission, I recently traveled to Mexico to meet with industry leaders, university marketing professors and Mexican students at seven universities. I was energized by the aspiration of that community to develop and grow the skills, talent, networks and community necessary to bring marketing in Mexico into the digital age. We intend to help them do it.

The education and training arm of MediaMath that I lead, the New Marketing Institute, is developing curriculum, programs and partnerships to speed up the harvesting of the native marketing tech talent necessary to make Mexico a leader in our sector. We started with this trip, establishing the relationships and seeding the partnerships with industry and academia necessary to systematically roll out digital marketing curriculum and training across the sector.

As a next step, we will provide Spanish language training for professors to acquire an understanding of how programmatic marketing works, the technology involved and how a marketing message gets from advertisers to digital devices and publishers where a consumer receives that message. That “train-the-trainer” strategy will enable them to then teach their own students at the universities we target as partners. Over time, we will introduce curriculum and training in more advanced categories ranging from the use of artificial intelligence and blockchain technology for marketing to how to construct audiences and segments in a way that respects consumers and the permissions they grant for the use of their information.

As these students move through their education and enter the market, they will work for clients and competitors in Mexico, building a vibrant community that will grow the pie for everyone. These seeds will ripen, and with their native knowledge of the market in which they were raised and live and shared commitment to “meeting each learner where they are,” they will, in turn, make a digital Mexico prosperous and strong.


How New Marketing Institute is Helping Clients Think Programmatically with Bid Masters

August 29, 2018 — by Marrah Africa


As investments in programmatic grow, so does the level of involvement across various roles. While programmatic teams have conversations around the space every day, there are non-programmatic teams that act as stakeholders and decision-makers for programmatic campaigns. The dynamics of buying programmatically are significantly different from traditional buying, and it is difficult to make strong connections between those dynamics and one’s own deliverables without experience. Different teams must be on the same page to operate more efficiently and fully leverage the benefits of programmatic.

Japan has finally joined the programmatic wave in recent years, and the potential of and interest in buying media in this way have been massive. Yet, we’ve found that the elements can be quite confusing even for seasoned marketers. Many programmatic campaigns today are still treated like direct insertion-order buys and, by using this approach, advertisers are inadvertently choosing to let go of control over their data and audiences.

How can clients and agencies adopt a programmatic mindset when briefing their programmatic teams if they have zero experience with buying platforms and buying in real-time environments?

This is the challenge that the New Marketing Institute (NMI) was tasked to resolve for clients in Japan.

By closing the knowledge and experience gap across roles, the clients would be able to better design their campaigns for success. With that in mind, we set ourselves the objectives of:

  • Simulating a programmatic team’s experience of running campaigns
  • Developing the client’s understanding of the dynamics of buying in a real-time environment
  • And, most importantly, demonstrating the impact of briefs on the overall success of their campaigns

To meet these objectives, we developed Bid Masters, an interactive workshop that takes inspiration from Monopoly™. Bid Masters simulates buying in a real-time environment. Attendees are grouped into teams and given a budget to bid on properties. Different properties have different values, some more premium than others. Each property has an equivalent rent value. The properties represent a set of impressions that attendees would want to buy. The rent value represents the conversions or ROI against those properties.

“Bid Masters ‘gamified’ the concept of bidding to help our clients plan programmatic campaigns more effectively as a sequel to our Programmatic 101 training,” said June Oh, Director, Platform Solutions, APAC, for MediaMath. “The interactive nature of the workshop naturally drove high participation from the audience (to a point where some clients wanted to stay and continue playing the game instead of going home!), and we had never seen so many light bulbs going off at once when the concepts of programmatic resonated with individuals. The aha-moment also gave some clients confidence to weigh in more on their programmatic campaigns.”

Yosiko Hirosue, Performance Marketing Manager from IBM, attended the workshop and said, “The digital strategists have been enabled and have deep understanding of programmatic. However, the team of marketers working on a campaign all need to have the base understanding of what programmatic is and the mechanics to truly optimize in an agile fashion. The workshop that had the interactive game factor was a fun and effective way of doing so.”

David Rittenhouse, Head of Digital Strategy from Ogilvy, also attended and said, “The MediaMath team organized an engaging learning experience that brought together our diverse team, and level-set us on a set of core principles to help us understand how programmatic marketing works. The trainer from NMI APAC did an excellent job facilitating exercises designed to demonstrate fundamental concepts such as targeting, scheduling, budgeting and KPI-setting.”

If you want to learn more about New Marketing Institute and their offerings, visit


Meeting the Learner Where They Are with NMI Learn

August 13, 2018 — by Lauren Jones


The way we learn has changed dramatically in the last two decades, from a standardized, classroom-based, instructor-led framework to one that uses the full gamut of digital tools to create a new kind of learning experience. These tools make training interactive, virtual, mobile and available anywhere, anytime, anyplace.

NMI is proud to announce that eLearning is now available. NMI Learn ensures that we are meeting the learner where they are, so that they are prepared with the skills and knowledge to meet current and future challenges.

The variety of content and delivery NMI Learn offers meets the different and specific needs of our diverse community of eLearners. Advantages of eLearning include a high level of learner engagement, fast delivery and easy and accurate tracking, certification and reporting. It is also self-paced, which is highly motivational for adult learners.

So, what can you expect from NMI Learn? There’s the personalised dashboard to keep track of your progress. You will also be part of a culture of learning that embeds best practice, new methods of delivery such as gamification and podcasts. And of course, you’ll get to peruse content that ranges from bitesize to comprehensive online programs and has the learner at its core.

If you’re yearning for even more convenient learning, NMI Learn is mobile-friendly to allow learners to access content through the Adobe Captivate Prime app, even when offline.

Brand new tutorials are live now on NMI Learn for Clients and MM Learn for Mathletes. Simply visit to register and log on.

Stay tuned for more incredible eLearning coming your way soon.


NMI’s Seven-Step Guide to Becoming an Exceptional Communicator

August 7, 2018 — by MediaMath


By Debbie Taylor, Director, Training & Client Enablementand Lauren Jones, Specialist, Global Training & Certification

Glazed-over looks? People checking their phones while you’re speaking? Not ideal! Follow NMI’s seven-step guide to transform your communication skills and deliver a message that sticks.

  1. Connect first

How soon do you start drifting off in meetings? New research has found that the average British person has an attention span of just 14 minutes. Grip your audience from the get-go by starting your meetings or presentations differently. Open with a question or a surprising statistic, and create an environment where your audience is hooked.

  1. Get over yourself! Be memorable

There is huge value in building an emotional connection with your audience. It helps your message stick. Overall, adults only make eye contact 30 to 60 percent of the time. However, we should be making eye contact 60 to 70 percent of the time to create an emotional connection. The most effective way to connect is to be yourself and let them see the real you. That said, it’s all about the audience, so don’t get fixated on how you’re coming across. Focus on your audience and their needs, and you will become instantly more memorable.

  1. More than words

Using your voice in different ways drastically impacts the power of your message.  Use staccato, raise your voice, save your quiet voice for the wisest words. Pause…for effect. Don’t underestimate body language—it makes up 55 percent of our total communication—and highlight your keywords with specific gestures to enhance their impact.

  1. The power of stories

Messages delivered as stories can be up to 22 times more memorable than just facts. Start yours strong by setting the scene. Any memorable story needs a character; give them a name and describe them physically and emotionally. Include a challenge or conflict to draw in the audience. Be brief and cut weak language, as it dilutes your message. Use your space, changing position to create energy. Finally, when you’re done, don’t run away! Maintain your position, hold eye contact and let your audience absorb your final words.

  1. …Just one more thing

Questioning can be the most powerful tool at your disposal. Short, open questions like, “Why is that?” “In what way?” and “How so?” encourage your audience to dig deeper, elaborate and work out their own solutions. The investigative Columbo technique, whereby you repeat one or two words back as a question, enables your audience to identify discrepancies in their thinking. If you’re on the receiving end, don’t be afraid of silence. Allow yourself time to think and edit before you speak. This way, your answer will be concise and deliberate. Put simply, say six words instead of 600.

  1. Engage the audience

Hands up if you’ve ever fallen asleep in a presentation? To avoid your audience doing this to you, try conducting a body poll by asking them to vote by standing up, raising an arm or balancing on one leg. Work your way around the room, getting each audience member to give a one-word answer to a question or topic you have set. Make sure you state who will start, what direction it will take and who will finish so the audience members are actively waiting their turns and considering their answers. Ask your audience to pair up and work on a task. Incorporate props, using whatever item you can find and your imagination to make your message come to life. Give a job, picking an audience member to take notes, count votes, give feedback. These simple, yet effective, activities increase audience participation and allow you to continually collect data.

  1. Open with impact, close with action

The law of primacy and recency is the observation that people will remember the first and last things you say. Capturing your audience’s attention with strong opening and closing statements ensures maximum impact. Open by describing a scene, or ask the audience to imagine something: “Picture a world where….” Or, start with a string of related words: “Technology, data, math…this is what drives modern marketing.” Try an audience engagement technique, like the body poll, to kick things off.

A relevant call to action can wow your audience and create a lasting impression. Use the SNAP technique: make it Simple, something they can do Now, that they can share and report on, so they are Accountable, and make it Personal.

With these simple techniques, you can unlock your potential to create energy, build connections, keep your audience hooked, drive the conversation forward and inspire.


NMI’s Guide to Delivering a Winning Training Session

May 14, 2018 — by Lauren Jones


Picture this.

It’s 2 pm at the end of a busy week and you’re in an industry training session. The room is stuffy, the coffee is weak and watching paint dry would be more interesting.

We’ve all been there at more than one point in our careers. A badly facilitated training session is a grim experience for the learner and even worse for the facilitator.

At NMI, we’re passionate about our subject matter and often have enthusiastic learners attend our trainings. But we don’t rely on those things to drive engagement. Our trainers have a wealth of experience in the education and training sector and have picked up a fair few tips along the way.

So, in case you ever have to facilitate ”Disposing of Household Waste 101” (yes, I once had to run that very course), we thought we’d share our top tips on delivering a winning training session.

1) Consider how adults learn

Adult learning theories, such as Knowles’s 4 Principles of Andragogy, tell us that we don’t passively absorb information in the way kids do. Adult learners have much more complex needs and embody a variety of learning styles. A powerful facilitator will employ different teaching methods such as asking questions, starting discussions or running activities, polls and quizzes.

2) Create an outstanding learner experience

The learner experience encompasses everything from registration to application. If a facilitator misses the mark for any of the components involved in learning, the learner experience is affected, and the level of learning is compromised. Training should happen when people are most productive. As a rule of thumb, morning sessions are good, after lunch is bad. Think about the learning environment. Poor lighting, uncomfortable temperature and insufficient refreshments are all barriers to learning. Keep time. Adult learners will appreciate starting and finishing on time.

3) Manage difficult behaviors

It can throw off the best of us when the group goes silent or someone tries to take over the session. Participants may even become hostile and challenge your credentials. Facilitators must quickly identify and deal with these common scenarios to keep the event flowing and positive. Set ground rules early. Bring quieter people into the discussion. If someone has lots of questions that are disrupting the session, offer to follow up with them afterward. Most importantly, always stay calm.

4) Ask the right questions

Asking questions encourages participation and gives learners a chance to evaluate and develop critical thinking. Asking open-ended questions draws out ideas and allows the learner to elaborate. Intelligent and thought-provoking questions can initiate a discussion and increase participation. Just don’t forget to listen to the answers!

5) Build rapport and increase engagement

Getting everyone involved is the key to a successful training session. If you stand up and talk for three hours, you’re a lecturer, not a facilitator. Icebreakers, energizers and activities are great tools for enhancing engagement and putting everyone at ease.

6) Be inclusive

A truly brilliant facilitator will place inclusivity at the heart of the session. Being mindful of the diversity of learners is crucial to ensure everyone has equal opportunity to achieve the objective. Inclusivity begins in the planning stage. Think about how your activities and tasks might be affected if a percentage of attendees has mobility issues, dyslexia, are hard of hearing or blind. Minimizing jargon and cultural references and making course materials available online will ensure your content is accessible.

Remember, inclusivity is a journey. It is not about being all things to all people all of the time, but about continually reflecting and asking, “How can I do better?”

Facilitation is an ongoing voyage of discovery. Subject matter will change, new scenarios will present themselves. Even if you are delivering the same content each time, no two training sessions will ever be the same. So, don’t expect to be perfect the first time or even the 50th time. Learn from mistakes, hone your skills and continue your own learning journey. Your students are counting on it.


IAB Singapore Rising Stars: Mediamath’s Marrah Africa on Dedicating a Career to Programmatic Education

April 24, 2018 — by Lauren Fritsky


We are proud of Marrah Africa, Global Expansion Manager at MediaMath, for being recognized as one of the IAB Singapore Programmatic Committee’s Rising Stars. Read a bit about the honor below and the rest of the interview here.

Following the first rising star feature, the IAB Singapore Programmatic Committee continues its hunt for the industry’s brightest talents behind the technology. This series aims to find out how these passionate practitioners got started, the secrets behind their success and what they are doing to drive the industry forward.

Describing herself as an ad tech evangelist, Marrah Africa, NMI senior manager, training and certification APAC at Mediamath, developed a personal commitment to further programmatic education in the region.

Starting her programmatic career in Mediacom, Africa developed planning and operational process for programmatic adoption for P&G ASEAN, educating internal and client teams across six markets.

Africa believes that a successful marketer today must be both a scientist and an artist. At the heart of successful programmatic adoption is a solid foundation to turn theory into practice through relevant and thought-provoking education. Bridging businesses to the right solutions requires a strong establishment of “what’s in it for me?” and breaking down the complex jargons by speaking through the language of others.

Moving to Mediamath to lead their educational arm, Africa pioneered as the APAC lead for New Marketing Institute, an education program. She single-handedly developed and rolled out the program for the businesses across the region.

“As programmatic is still in its infant stage in most of the Southeast Asia countries, it’s crucial that we need someone like Marrah, who truly understands how programmatic works and the true benefits of programmatic and be able to transfer her knowledge to individuals at group-level. This is how we can grow programmatic together in the region,” shared Anna Chan, regional managing director, Asia of Amnet.

Mediamath and the New Marketing Institute will be one of the contributors to the IAB Singapore’s Adapt and Grow Professional Conversion Programme (PCP) for Programmatic Advertising. The programme, launched in partnership with the EDB & WSG, is developed to help meet the growing need for talent with programmatic advertising skill sets. We look forward to working with rising stars such as Africa at the forefront of the industry to develop the leaders of tomorrow.


Programmatic Training Roadshow in India

December 13, 2017 — by Pranjal Desai


Programmatic in India is still at a nascent stage. Though the programmatic penetration in India has reached 38%, it is largely concentrated in very specific pockets and it still has a long way to go in terms of adoption. With regional concerns around the complexities of programmatic technology and the need for upskilling in such areas, MediaMath aims to bridge the knowledge gap and help marketers in the region execute more efficient and successful marketing campaigns by rolling out a series of educational initiatives across the programmatic ecosystem in India.

With the help of MediaMath’s training arm — New Marketing Institute — MediaMath ran an agency roadshow covering all things programmatic. The topics covered included ‘Programmatic 101’, ‘Data Driven Programmatic’, ‘Programmatic for Media Planners’ and ‘Programmatic for leaders’. The training was led by the Head of NMI, APAC Marrah Africa, Pranjal Desai (Country Manager India) and Zirca team (Mediamath’s exclusive partners in India). It was extremely well received and we ended up training 200+ agency folks across India.

The objectives of the trainings were multi-fold, the primary emphasis was to provide required knowledge to help align with the latest digital trends and capabilities to our partners.

Salil Shanker, Business Head, Amnet India said “For DAN, this training helped to get the understanding of programmatic to folks beyond their trading desk. Amnet has always encouraged initiatives around training by conducting various internal workshops. The support from technology partners like MediaMath is refreshing and positive for the thriving Indian programmatic ecosystem. Participants were from multiple DAN digital agencies who learnt a great deal of knowledge on programmatic media. Such training helps the traditional digital buyers in understanding the programmatic space more and there by selling and using it more effectively.

Smita Salgoankar, OMG programmatic, said “Continuous learning is an industry obligation. The pace at which we iterate our platforms should match the pace at which we educate ourselves. MediaMath’s training initiatives are helping our teams not only make sense of their platform, but the course of the industry on the whole.”

Secondly, there is a dire need for gaining clarity around the programmatic jargon. There are plenty of terms, buzzwords and acronyms in this space. We need to ensure that everyone involved is speaking the same terminology, allowing the various teams to plan and coordinate effectively. As Rammohan Pai, Associate Director, OmnicomMediaGroup Programmatic said “The training helped the larger team at OMG understand the scope from a non-jargon and easy to understand view, so that everyone finally comes together to understand what the strengths are and evolves their client side stakeholders.”

Lastly, a huge benefit to programmatic rests on the data layer. Data is generally a complex topic and it can be difficult to understand how to make the data work but the training helps to simplify a convoluted concept. Sagar Pushp, Business Head Cadreon, India said “The training was conducted in a very simple yet elaborate manner, taking the audience right from the basics of programmatic to current and future trends, without making it tedious or boring. We saw a great amount of excitement post this with our media planners and client servicing folks.”

MediaMath will continue to put effort in educating the market and building a transparent and efficient platform to help brands and agencies enjoy the full benefits of the programmatic revolution.


No PhD Required: Get Your Omnichannel Marketing Certificate

November 15, 2017 — by Michelle Said



It’s a concept that is crucial to digital marketing, but can sometimes seem as if you would need a doctorate in order to fully understand it, let alone embrace it.

That’s why MediaMath has partnered with the Data & Marketing Association (DMA) and Optikal to create a certification track based on the core concepts of omnichannel marketing.

In order to understand the field as a whole, marketers need to know the basics of programmatic and the different types of media buying opportunities that are available today. From learning about exchanges to direct buys, marketers who want to be up-to-speed in the programmatic space require the mastery of knowledge regarding different media buying opportunities.

However, once you learn about the other factors at play, you can begin to see how all of these factors are linked together. From there, you can start to understand how mastery over each element creates savvier marketers, which leads to more effective and efficient marketing.

MediaMath’s Senior Manager of Programmatic Education, Michelle Said, Optikal’s CEO and Managing Partner James Fink, and Professor Susan K. Jones have created a robust course track that takes attendees from the core concept of integrated marketing, to understanding the customer journey through an omnichannel lens, to deep subject matter understanding of core technologies across social, video, and mobile.

Modules include:

  • Integrated Marketing
  • Next Generation Omnichannel Marketing
  • Mapping the Customer Journey with Omnichannel Marketing
  • Transmission in Omnichannel Marketing
  • Programmatic Marketing & Media Buying
  • Omnichannel Video Marketing
  • Omnichannel Mobile Marketing
  • Omnichannel Social Media Marketing

Sign up today at this link and take advantage of this self-paced eLearning track.


Marketing Wiki: Omnichannel’s Importance to Consumer-Centric Marketing

September 20, 2017 — by Cassandra Vitelli


Consumer-Centric marketing is an approach to media that allows marketers to create seamless experiences for customers across screens. Marketing is most effective when it is centered on the customer — understanding their behavior, relationship with the brand, and location in the buy cycle. This is extremely difficult to do well, particularly as customers begin interacting with brands on mobile devices, connected TVs, social media, and emerging touchpoints. In order to create customer-centric experiences, marketers need to purchase their media on all of these channels, as if they were a single channel, with a unified view of the customer and a coherent strategy about how to interact with them across devices.

Why is Consumer-Centric Marketing important?

Years ago when people just watched TV, read print and listened to radio, it made sense to execute one omnibus buy across channels and blast out a single message. In 2017, the average person uses  7.2 Internet-connected devices and that figure is likely to rise as the Internet of Things (IoT) becomes mainstream. In this environment, it’s important not to hit consumers with one message at too high a frequency or present them with inappropriate messages. The benefits of this approach include: 1) unified audience and media management 2) holistic machine-based learning and attribution across all channels and 3) a consolidated source of measurement aligned with marketers’ goals. By contrast, operating with point solutions or channel silos leads to a lack of cost transparency and a fragmented message, among other issues.

What is the difference between Multichannel and Omnichannel?

Just because you put the same creative on multiple channels does NOT mean you are omnichannel. Multichannel means that a marketer is using other channels through disconnected platforms that cannot fully share data. In order to get to omnichannel, marketers should be using a cross-device identity solution and a single DSP to sync their strategies, budgets, messaging, frequency, and measurement across those channels.

What are the problems with realizing Omnichannel?

For the most part today, omnichannel is more an ideal than a reality. Only 14% of marketers say they can track consumers across channels and act on the data they uncover from those interactions, according to L2. In practice, it can be difficult to establish a consumer’s single identity across various devices, synchronize marketing messages across platforms and attribute a sale to the right media and messages. Today, marketers should be laying the foundation of their omnichannel strategy by establishing cross-device solutions, implementing a data strategy to maximize your first party data, and organizing your marketing teams around shared goals and views of the customer


Let’s Make an Ad: Part 2

September 7, 2017 — by Peter Gosling


In part one of Let’s Make an Ad, we looked at what actually goes into creating an HTML5 ad unit and some of the many options out there. I today’s post, I have done a screen capture showing how to make a simple. animated HTML5 ad in Google Web Designer. This will hopefully show people unfamiliar with the process what it actually takes to make an ad!

Download a copy of Google Web Designer here:

Interested in other options? Read part one of Let’s Make an Ad here.