Featured Startup Pitch: Built by digital agency vets, WhatRunsWhere is an ad platform designed to give a higher level of insight on the competitive landscape
Headquarters: San Diego, California
Year Founded: 2011
Founders: Mike Cojanu, CEO and Max Teitelbaum, COO
Company Description: WhatRunsWhere is a competitive intelligence tool for online advertising.
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By Max Teitelbaum, co-founder and COO
We help advertisers reduce the risk in advertising campaigns, discover new traffic sources, monitor competition, and buy advertisements across the web and mobile platforms.
Two and a half years ago, Mike developed WhatRunsWhere to solve a problem we ourselves were experiencing. At that time, we were both running small but successful digital ad agencies. WhatRunsWhere was originally for our own internal use and was meant to cut down on early campaign costs and get a better ‘big picture’ of the advertising market and the constantly evolving trends. As the product improved, we began to see a lot of demand for the service—enough that it made it worthwhile to begin offering it to the public. We started out slowly, funding the development through internal usage for our own advertising campaigns as well as selling a limited beta to close associates who wanted access at a time where no other similar service existed. When we felt it was ready, we turned off our own campaigns, did a public launch, and WhatRunsWhere was born.
As advertisers, we know that media buying can be a guess-and-test process and a very timely commitment, not to mention a waste of money if a campaign underperforms. When we released WhatRunsWhere, there were practically no competitive intelligence tools in the display advertising industry that released daily updates or were in a price range that catered to small-and-medium sized companies. The only way to get this intelligence was to pay in the mid five figures, and upwards, to large established companies.
With that in mind, we decided to keep the product inexpensive and user-friendly, choosing advertising agencies, small businesses, affiliate marketers, and SMBs as our target market. We had enough money from previous entrepreneurial ventures to launch the company without any funding and were profitable from our first day of operation.
WhatRunsWhere initially focused on display advertising. We always knew mobile would take off and play an increasingly larger role for companies, so expanding into that area was a logical and needed step in the company’s evolution.
How WhatRunsWhere Is Different
In addition to our cost-effectiveness versus the competition, we also gather more data from more places (over 60 ad networks) on multiple devices, and we update more frequently. We currently cover 12 countries and are continually innovating and expanding. We also just launched our Android In-App intelligence tool. We are the first company to offer this service, with coverage expanding every single day.
Our business model is fairly simple. Customers sign up for the service and pay a monthly subscription fee. We currently have three price plans (Basic, Premium and Enterprise) and offer a seven-day trial for one dollar.
We acquired our customer base and built the company mainly through word-of-mouth, referrals, sponsorships, and exhibiting at industry trade shows such as ad:tech and Affiliate Summit. We also started forging strategic partnerships with companies that have complementary products and services such as engage:BDR, RedBooks and ReTargeter.
Early this year, we ramped up our social media and marketing efforts, and also started a blog. We are growing steadily, and by the end of this year we expect our current staff of ten employees to double as we expand equally in our programming and sales departments.
WRW is headquartered in San Diego. Mike, our CEO, runs the entire technical side of the business out of that office while I oversee our support and sales teams from Toronto. Because we’re in different places, communication is key. We use many avenues to communicate, such as Flowdock and Skype.
What Runs Where – www.whatrunswhere.com