Thought Leadership

Simplifying the war room for the holiday season

November 12, 2015
By Adam Soroca

At virtually every digital advertising company on the planet, war rooms are well underway to ensure flawless holiday season revenue delivery. In daily stand-up style meetings, managers recite key delivery and performance metrics. From sourcing specific traffic to meeting advertiser needs to handling capacity constraints, intense sessions uncover issues and course correct.

Digital advertising companies often make or break their year based on Q4, with some 40% of annual revenue typically delivered from October through December. The period featuring Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s Eve brings a special giddiness for those companies soaring to new revenue delivery heights.

Roadblocks, private marketplace deals, heavy ups, takeovers, etc. are in play to wow consumers. Sizable budgets are often required to deliver in a compressed timeframe – in some cases hours! High fives are frequent when full delivery occurs, while tough conversations ensue for those that under-deliver.

I spent the better part of ten years running such war rooms, which of course also ran during the holidays. Those executing well likely repeat the high-stakes delivery during the Superbowl Sunday spike.

Some years, only short check-ins confirmed on-target delivery and performance. Other years we were trying to figure out where traffic from certain publishers disappeared to or how to handle the excess traffic pummeling our systems. One year, we literally melted a network switch cutting down 40% of our traffic – talk about threading a needle while matching supply and demand.

More often than not, the work ensuing from war rooms was to shed traffic from hitting our system to make room for the key traffic needed to deliver key certain campaigns.

Reflecting back, there is no doubt that war rooming provided foundational elements for the thinking that led to nToggle. A dynamic system to precisely match supply and demand teams’ targeted traffic needs would have absolutely freed us up to enjoy Turkey and stuffing without interruption.

With that, a toast and a wish of best success to all the teams hustling this Q4. You all do amazing work that most on the outside never see.

Happy Holidays!

Adam Soroca

nToggle Co-founder & CEO

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