Our ‘Profile: A Day in the Life of’ feature takes a look at some of the global professionals working within performance marketing. It aims to shed light on the varying roles and companies across the flourishing industry:
Name: Tom Pepper
Job title and company: UK MD, Vibrant Media
In one sentence, how would you describe what the company does?
TP: Vibrant is the leading in-content ad platform that gets brands discovered
What are the company’s unique selling points?
TP: Vibrant Media’s creative ad formats maximise viewability by sitting natively within relevant digital content. Our unique Intelligent Qualification (IQ) system enables consumers to choose whether or not they want to launch the ads and ensure that marketers only initiate relationships with consumers who are actively interested in their brand. Our unique brand canvas formats hosts a brand’s content marketing assets including video, images and social media updates.
Within the last six months/year, what stands out as the company’s major milestones?
TP: A major highlight this year was launching our Brand Canvas product suite. The Brand Canvas ad units are cross-platform, in-content native ad units. Investing in creative is key and every quarter for the past 12 months we’ve developed a Brand Canvas ad unit for brands to engage consumers. Our new responsive design technology now makes it possible for publishers and advertisers to serve ads optimised for whatever device the consumer is using.
Our IQ process extends Vibrant’s drive for transparent native advertising by delivering non-intrusive brand impressions to consumers from within editorial text and images. This not only tells consumers that an ad is present within the content, but also the specific brand that is advertising – before an ad is even launched.
Vibrant Media has also spent the last year working to address the viewability problem faced by many digital advertisers and publishers. ComScore reported over the summer that more than half of digital ads served (54%) are not viewable to consumers. Hundreds of millions of pounds are being wasted worldwide each year on ads that are never seen. Vibrant Media have been looking to combat this colossal waste, by enabling publishers and advertisers to deploy ad formats which are completely viewable to consumers – sitting within relevant content – but which are user-initiated and are not interruptive or intrusive to the web browsing experience.
Finally, we are investing on the international side of our business with a view to strengthen our work in APAC and MENA over the coming months.
Duration in current role:
TP: Since October 2013.
Where are you based?
TP: We’re based in Farringdon, central London.
Previous performance marketing-related Co’s you have worked at:
TP: Advertising.com, IPC Media and Haymarket
What are your main job responsibilities?
TP: As UK MD, of course my responsibility it to ensure revenue keeps growing for Vibrant Media. However, to do this, I’ll be leading my colleagues to fulfil UK brands’ demands for new ways to engage consumers with their branded content. I’ll also be advising publishers and brands to choose effective native advertising for both handheld and desktop device environments. The end game is to impact the industry as a whole and to transform the way consumers navigate content – both editorial and branded.
Take us through what you get up to on a typical working Monday:
TP: It varies, but a recent day began with a breakfast meeting with the CEO of a large media owner to discuss the future of branded content. Later in the day I met with one of the UK’s largest print and digital publishers to consult on a strategy for effectively monetising their media titles. In the afternoon I spoke on an IAB debate panel examining the issue of how native advertising will enhance the growth of mobile. Finally I met with one of our clients, a global FMCG company, to discuss a strategy for supporting discovery of their brands over the next 12 months.
What top three websites can you be found browsing during your lunch hour?
TP: Media guardian, Forbes and Techcrunch
What are your top three tips for someone looking to get their hands on a job like yours?
TP: 1. Constantly learn new things: success most often requires a long term investment in an industry, immersing yourself in the market and wider commercial aspects of it, and really knowing your industry.
2. Inspire others by leading by example, and having a vision and belief in the business you work in.
3. Be a self-starter, ready and willing to deal with multiple stakeholders inside and outside of your company and comfort zone.
Career-wise, where do you see yourself in three years time?
TP: Leading our global expansion into new markets
Tell us one thing people at work don’t know about you?
TP: If you’re ever at the Hospital Club in Covent Garden, ask the barman for a Tom Pepper. It’s delicious!
Did you catch some of the other profiles on PI?
VP, Direct Response Advertising, Adknowledge