31 January 2024
In 2023, we launched an array of new products and solutions, forged new broadcaster partnerships, created a new online training academy, introduced a refreshed brand identity, and so much more. As we reflect on our achievements over the last 12 months, we could not be prouder of what our colleagues, partners, and clients have accomplished.
Here are some highlights…
We became a purely adtech company
Following the split of our adtech and media divisions in 2022, our evolution into a purely adtech company was officially completed in 2023. Our former media division is now housed within RTL AdAlliance, Europe’s largest international sales house, and the smartclip team is now 100% dedicated to developing cutting-edge, privacy-first adtech solutions for Europe’s major media owners.
This new era called for a bold new look that would better distinguish us as an adtech company, so we launched our refreshed brand identity. Our new design architecture, 3D motion graphics, people-centric imagery, and brand messaging — all on display throughout our dynamic new website — clearly communicate our core values, bringing adtech to life with a level of creativity that’s rarely seen in our industry. Our brand refresh has already been honoured with two prestigious design awards — another rarity for companies in the B2B tech space.
We continued to advance our platform and products
Our technology stack kept on growing, with a wide variety of new products and feature enhancements making their debut in 2023. Some of our highlights included:
- Expansion of programmatic linear ad break replacement: Following the launch of programmatic replacement in Germany in 2022 with Active Agent, we expanded the capability to the international market in 2023, completing its integration with The Trade Desk.
- Vegan Ads: Our new smartx feature that enables publishers to monetise inventory without accessing personally identifiable information was made available programmatically via various demand-side platforms, including Active Agent, Adform, Xandr, The Trade Desk, and Nexxen.
- New Reporting UI: Our refreshed UI streamlined broadcasters’ reporting processes and improved efficiency, offering new user-friendly features tailored to real-world needs.
- Audio Ad Serving: smartclip transformed audio ad campaigns, incorporating the capability to deliver audio ads via smartx and initiating the first RTB audio integrations. This was a significant milestone for audio campaign management and will allow us to expand our partnerships across even more distribution channels.
- Audience Products: We added “session ID” and “external household ID” to our growing portfolio of supported identifiers.
- Advanced ATV Business Rules: Additional business rules added an extra layer of control for broadcasters, including the exclusion of specific campaigns (e.g. self-exclusivity) and ensuring precise utilisation of Nielsen categories to improve the viewing experience by synchronising linear and digital advertising.
- TAM 2.0: We released the next generation of our Target Audience Mapper, an automated solution for broadcasters that guarantees highly curated ad deliveries within the most appropriate programmes for each advertiser and to the most relevant audiences.
We launched the smartclip Academy
With all these new innovations, it’s important to ensure our colleagues, partners, and clients have all the information they need to navigate not only our new products but also the fast-evolving adtech industry, so we opened the (online) doors to the new smartclip Academy in 2023.
This innovative learning management system will offer a range of online courses and training recordings, and it will be a key resource in our ongoing mission to make adtech as accessible as possible.
We hosted our Product Advisory Board meetings in Paris and London
A central element of our truly partnered approach, our client-focused Product Advisory Board (PAB) meeting offers two days dedicated to strategic alignment, company updates, and networking. In 2023, we invited clients to a PAB meeting in Paris, co-hosted with Realytics, and a PAB meeting in London, co-hosted with Yospace.
We inked new partnerships with major broadcasters
We built out our new partnership with Rai Pubblicità, the advertising sales house of Rai, Italy’s largest public broadcaster, in 2023. After achieving significant success during testing in 2022, Rai Pubblicità now uses the smartclip adtech stack to monetise digital advertising channels across the Rai web offering and smart TV apps.
Following a new partnership announced in March, Warner Bros. Discovery is also now utilising our adtech to expand its addressable TV offering, with the ATV Spot format now bookable on DMAX and TLC.
Having successfully launched its linear live addressable TV offer via our adtech solutions, IP Austria extended its partnership with smartclip and is now utilising our full adtech stack to empower its total video strategy, and IP Luxembourg also migrated to our full adtech stack to advance their digital ad-serving capabilities.
Our subsidiary Realytics won more acclaim
Four new awards were added to Realytics’ already impressive trophy cabinet in 2023. Its Brand Exposure Engagement (BEE) solution — which offers single-source campaign measurement across multiple channels — won “Video Adtech Solution of the Year” at the Minted Adtech Awards and a Les Cas d’OR du Digital award in the “TV & Digital Measurement & Analysis” category.
The Realytics team also signed multiple new partnerships, including collaborations with Ad Alliance, which saw BEE used in Germany for the first time, and with Rakuten Advertising, which saw BEE integrated for CTV measurement data. In addition, the company strengthened its presence in Germany and German-speaking countries with the appointment of Sabine Fischbach-Neumann as Country Manager DACH.
We shared our knowledge in various publications and at numerous events
2023 saw the release of our latest white paper — Game On: Engaging the Ever-Growing Casual Gaming Audience with Rewarded Video Ads. We also teamed up with RTL AdAlliance and Ad Alliance Netherlands for a second edition of The New Life of the Living Room report, which showcases a fresh round of research on video consumption behaviours across Europe, updated to reflect the latest market developments. We looked at how the Netherlands’ leading media network is prioritising data privacy with smartclip’s adtech solutions in RTL Netherlands Data Privacy Case Study 2023, and we contributed to BVDW’s Digital Video Guide.
We sponsored, hosted, and spoke at numerous industry events, such as the HbbTV Symposium in Naples, the Antitrust Law Colloquium in Cologne, the RTL Beach at the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity, and RTL AdAlliance’s SME Summit.
We turned the spotlight on advancing women in adtech
Our PAB meeting in London featured our first “Women in Adtech” panel discussion, which saw leading adtech experts and advisors, including executives from Sport1, smartclip, and Virtual Minds sharing their experiences and exploring ways to create equal opportunities for women in the industry.
And Shira Leffel, Executive Director of Marketing & Product Education, marked International Women’s Day by reflecting on how the adtech industry can encourage gender parity, particularly in leadership positions.
We grew our team, our minds, and our muscles
We expanded our team in 2023, welcoming 18 new smartclippers, and were pleased to see our annual employee survey showing continuing high levels of satisfaction among the team following recent changes.
Our Gütersloh team are also enjoying a new office location in one of Germany’s tech hot spots, following their move into the Bertelsmann building in Rheda-Wiedenbrück.
2023 saw a packed calendar of internal employee-focused events that not only broadened our knowledge but also gave us the opportunity to share our expertise with our colleagues and peers. Highlights included:
- Strategy Days: Our 2023 Strategy Days were the first to be 100% centred on tech.
- Wolfsburg Offsite: Our three-day tech offsite gave smartclippers the opportunity to catch up, meet new team members, hear the latest company and industry news, and participate in fun team-building activities.
- smartweek: Our fourth annual peer-to-peer learning event saw smartclippers and special guests hosting sessions across three days.
- Your Campus: We participated in Bertelsmann’s annual knowledge-sharing initiative, joining colleagues from across the conglomerate to share our expertise via virtual sessions.
- Expert sessions: We hosted nine internal expert sessions to further educate our peers on our various products.
- Open Engineering Rounds: Our engineers explored new ideas for tech improvements and innovations in 16 Open Engineering Rounds. Topics included Implementing Case Insensitive String Search/Compare in C++/Assembly/POSIX, The Power of “IO Monad”, and Acceptance Test Driven Development.
In amongst all our professional accomplishments and personal growth in 2023, we always recognised the importance of giving back to our communities as well as investing in our employees’ wellbeing. Whether they were using their Social Days to help local charities, volunteering at the Special Olympics, participating in sports activities, or enjoying after-work get-togethers, our colleagues had plenty of opportunities throughout the year to bond and relax, enriching smartclip’s positive and dynamic work culture.
As always, our dedicated smartclippers and valued partners and clients are integral to our success, so we’d like to thank you all for your ongoing loyalty and support throughout 2023. And we look forward to working together in 2024 as we continue to push the boundaries of adtech!
Looking to partner with us in 2024? Contact us.
Want to become a smartclipper in 2024? Reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org.