Q&A with Kurt
In your own words, tell us about your role at Groupon and the apps you manage.
My role at Groupon involves bringing new users to the Groupon app via digital marketing campaigns and making sure the business spends its mobile app install budget as efficiently as possible. A large amount of my time is spent evaluating the performance of our partners and developing strategies to target the right user with the right ad at the right time. I also spend a large amount of time working with Product and Engineering teams in order to drive updates that will help conversion and improve the overall customer experience.
If you have not heard of the Groupon app, then you are missing out. It is my favorite app for finding deals on local events, restaurants, and things to do in my area. If you are hoping to save money on things near you, then I would recommend downloading!
How long have you been working in Digital Marketing and what do you like most about your job?
I have been working in digital marketing for the last five years. I started out by working at a DSP called Audience Science where my focus was on managing display, video, and mobile web campaigns. This role encompassed everything from building out targeted strategy recommendations, trafficking ads, and working with the client on day-to-day things such as performance.
What I love most about digital marketing is how it encompasses multiple skill-sets. I never reach a point where I feel I have learned everything there is to learn. The job is highly analytical in regard to measuring KPIs, but there is also a social skill-set that is needed to work well with teams and build relationships with partners. The industry is also very dynamic, so whether it’s working with the product team to implement a new technology or testing a new method of detecting fraud, I’m always working on something different.
What advice would you share with someone looking to enter the digital marketing field?
Make sure you have a good fundamental knowledge of statistics as you will have to easily be able to interpret trends and articulate them clearly to upper-level management. My other advice is do not be in a rush to manage everything at once. There are many pitfalls one can encounter in digital marketing so make sure you spend time to develop the foundational knowledge that is necessary to make good business decisions.
When it comes to user acquisition and engagement, what challenges do you face?
Fraud is one of the most significant issues I face when trying to deliver ads. A lot of inventory is ridden with fraud, so you have to find the right DSP partner with the right tools in order to be able to mitigate fraud and detect it before it happens. Fraud can also occur at the MMP level, so make sure your attribution methodologies and look-back windows are setup correctly. Do not use ‘fingerprinting’ for your attribution, and always make sure you are attributing off of the IDFA or AD ID.
Another big challenge is with incrementally. As an app marketer, you want to make sure the money you spend drives incremental downloads and that you do not end up paying for downloads you could otherwise be getting for free. There are many ways to conduct an incrementally test. The method traditionally used involves conducting an A/B test where one group is exposed to your ads and the other isn’t. You then measure the lift between the two within a given period of time to get the overall incrementality factor.
Where do you see the mobile marketing industry heading next?
As mobile app marketing becomes more prevalent and wide-spread, my guess is that China will start to become a bigger player in the industry. Over the last year, I have seen a number of Chinese DSPs start to reach out in an attempt to work with American companies. Also, companies like Tik-Tok have sprung up and provided new, innovative ways for American companies to spend their budgets.
I am also interested to see who will emerge as the “next big player” in the DSP space. As of right now, there are many DSPs out there who can buy inventory on the open-exchange using their unique algorithms and machine learning. In my opinion, the company that will emerge as the winner will be the one that has the best machine learning, the most transparent reporting, the most innovative creative offerings, and the best people working for them.
Are there any conferences or trades shows that you would recommend other Digital Marketers attend?
Attend the Mobile Apps Unlocked conference that is held every year in Las Vegas. You’ll meet other marketers who share similar experiences as you and you’ll be able to ideas regarding best practices. This is also one of the best conferences to learn about “the next big thing” in app advertising. App Growth Summit conferences are also great. They have very few vendors attending the events so the setting is more intimate and you can speak candidly about projects you are working on.