Datapoint Media

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Photo credit: https://www.flickr.com/photos/kevcole/4436427104

Background

Waltham, MA based Datapoint Media is a digital media company that helps online publishers maximize their advertising revenue through use of audience data and targeting. With an increase in media properties, proliferation of devices, and steep competition for advertising dollars, it's never been more important for publishers to understand, target, and monetize their audiences. Datapoint Media fills this need by providing a best in class solution to intelligently create and target audience segments.

Overview

Datapoint approached us with three primary goals for Audience360: to automate repetitive manual work, consolidate reporting data, and enable client facing capabilities. Before Audience360, Datapoint was spending an unscalable amount of time performing repetitive, manual tasks including copying details from emails into "order forms", creating "line items", and monitoring campaign performance. In addition, prior to 360, Datapoint was struggling to effectively produce client reports because they had to pull data from several sources, combine it in Excel, and then analyze it before delivering to clients. Finally, before 360 Datapoint clients had no "self service" capabilities for either segmentation or reporting.

Challenges

  • Effectively create a "bridge" between DoubleClick for Publishers (DFP) and AppNexus
  • Become familiar with the digital advertising space to understand how to generate client facing reports
  • Architect the platform and data to enable efficient querying and scaling
  • Develop an intuitive user interface to minimize the amount of client training

Solution

Once we had flushed out the requirements, we decided to split the project into three components, the DFP/AppNexus bridge, analytics, and the client tracking pixel. With the pieces separated, we adapted an agile approach where the components were developed in parallel, integrated at the end of each sprint, and Datapoint continually provided feedback. As development progressed, the Setfive team became intimately familiar with the advertising space and used this to provide actionable feedback to Datapoint.

As development started wrapping up, we worked with the Datapoint team to extensively QA the entire system with a particular focus on ensuring that the DFP to AppNexus bridge was robust, secure, and fault tolerant. Once we'd completed this process, we launched A360 with Datapoint and scaled to processing ~15 million events per day within a month.

Technology

Warning! Buzzwords ahead. The Audience360 platform is built on the Symfony2 framework along with Bootstrap, BackboneJS, and jQuery. In addition, we're using Beanstalkd for our queueing system with PHP producers and consumers. The platform is deployed on Amazon Web Services to facilitate horizontal scaling as the number of events tracked increases. Finally, the tracking pixel is built using a customized version of jQuery and served via Amazon's CloudFront CDN.

"The Audience360 platform has been critical to helping us scale our business – we’re able to use our time more efficiently to focus on strategic initiatives, and provide our clients with increased transparency, capabilities, and improved workflow that helps them drive their businesses forward."

The Audience360 Platform