Tell me where you are and I’ll tell you what you might need: Erik Streller from St. Gallen places virtual advertising in real places.
App advertising is booming: Every day, millions of mini banners appear on Swiss smartphones. To minimize distribution loss, most advertising planners book apps that match the advertised product. Swiss entrepreneur Erik Streller-Shen takes a different approach: He makes use of the locational information collected by the apps to place the banners within very specific perimeters. His platform Geotargads has been running since the beginning of 2014. STARTUP CAMPUS interviewed the ZURICH Start Award winner of 2014 (click here for a portrait) and found out new and exciting information.
What is your background? How did you come up with this idea?
In 1989, I founded Go! Uni-Werbung, a communications agency specializing in student advertising. We conducted a survey among students about their app, which was the trigger for Geotargads. It turns out that their behavior varies considerably from one university to the next. Another finding was that the usage of apps by individual students kept changing. And so we looked for a solution that combines the factors “location of cell phone user” and “effective usage behavior”. With Geotargads, you can select target audiences by location and reach them with your messages through their smartphones in about 1.2 million apps.
What do you want to achieve with your venture? What motivates you?
As an advertising expert, it has always been important to me that the messages should be relevant to addressees. After all, only relevant advertising is perceived and accepted as positive information. Geotargads makes it possible to place relevant messages with the relevant target group in a particular location, without much distribution loss.
How do you work on your idea, full-time or part-time? How do you deal with your heavy workload?
We work on Geotargads full-time. We love our work. For our team, it is mainly a matter of planning, priorities, and teamwork.
Where do you plan to be in three years?
With Geotargads, you can launch exciting mobile guerrilla campaigns. For instance, as a non-sponsor of a major sporting event, you can advertise directly at the stadium, or you can be present in ski resorts and amusement parks. We very much enjoy our role as ‘insider tip’ for marketers.
Why should someone invest in your startup?
Smartphone advertising is a very fast-growing business. By taking account of the location of users and the independence of individual app providers, Geotargads offers an exciting product both to corporations and SMEs.