Q&A With Dennis Colon, VP of Ad Ops and Strategy at CBSi

Q&A With Dennis Colon, VP of Ad Ops and Strategy at CBSi

“Email is really what we are using as the glue to connect people across our network.” says Dennis Colon, VP of Ad Ops & Strategy at CBSi. He makes a good point, because email is essential to identity and marketing to people. That’s why 89% of marketers consider email their most valuable piece of data.

LiveIntent recently attended the AdMonsters Publisher Forum in Portland, OR, where our SVP of Product Marketing Kerel Cooper took the stage to present on ‘The Power of People Verified Audiences’ to a room of 100+ Ad Operations leaders. During the presentation, Dennis Colon, VP of Ad Ops & Strategy at CBSi, joined Kerel for a QA session. Below is a transcript of the QA, where Kerel and Dennis discussed the growth of the LiveIntent-CBSi partnership, importance of identity in a mobile first world and why email is no longer about just sending email.

Q (Kerel Cooper): CBSi and LiveIntent have been working together now for 6+ years…but it’s only been over the past couple years where our partnership has grown. Why the focus on email?

A (Dennis Colon): I’d like to say that it was me joining the company (laughs) …. In all seriousness, I wanted CBSi to have a renewed focus on email where it’s not just about a monetization revenue stream, which is key and very important, but more about optimizing that revenue stream and looking for ways to sell more of our own inventory direct, be strategic, and evolve.

Q (Kerel Cooper): How does CBSi approach People-Based Marketing/Identity as it relates to understanding your customers?

A (Dennis Colon): Going beyond just email newsletters is something I’ve had success at previous companies. Where we focused on merging online and offline data has been super successful. Now, as things evolve, we want to use our email strategy to do things like mitigate non-human traffic. It’s about getting the benefit of a specific partnership and looking for other ways to enhancing your business and that has been key for us.

Q (Kerel Cooper): CBS has so many different brands and platforms. How does this impact your ability to understand your audience, especially as users consume content in various ways? What are some of the challenges around unifying all that data into one single customer view?

A (Dennis Colon): There are many challenges around unifying data. I’ve only had the chance to work for companies that are a network of sites. And I try to look at them as one big general site, but I can’t really do that at CBSi because it’s so diverse as far as properties and audience go. With that said, email identity data is something I can use to convince management that there are lucrative business streams by connecting our user base across gaming, sports, entertainment and news. So we are really trying to focus on where we see that connection in our ecosystem, when are people engaging and how we deliver the right advertising or other initiatives. Email is really what we are using as the glue to connect people across our network.

Q (Kerel Cooper): What about going beyond advertising? Content?

A (Dennis Colon):Content is key. Content and advertising are symbiotic. In order to continue produce great content, you need a strong revenue stream and business. You need great content to run business and need really great business platforms, initiatives and strategies to grow the revenue.

Q (Kerel Cooper): As a larger corporation you have to pick and choose your initiatives …finding things worth putting effort towards that can turn into a business … How has LiveIntent been able to help?

A (Dennis Colon): It starts with enhancing our revenue streams which we’ve done through LiveIntent’s programmatic monetization product. The other piece is that LiveIntent has brought new opportunities to us that have not always been visible. Specifically how we can leverage our first party website audience and first party email audience to understand more about our most valuable users. Tying together online and offline email data is huge for us.

Q (Kerel Cooper): What advice would you give for the publishers/peers regarding audience identity, verifying real people and email?

A (Dennis Colon): It’s important to dig in, test and try new things. It’s super important to always go out there looking for new ways to create revenue streams and take back what’s negative and positive positive … learn and figure out a way to help enhance your business.

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