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Plug & Play’s CEO Corner: John McIntyre, Sightly


Plug and Play brings together retailers and start-ups that offer specific technology and expertise that can relieve merchants’ pain points. Chain Store Age’s Customer Disruption newletter provides a Q&A with the CEO of one of those companies in each issue. This time, the spotlight is on John McIntyre of Sightly.

What does Sightly do?

Sightly’s award-winning TargetView platform enables brands to dynamically personalize video ads and deliver hyperlocal, micro-targeted campaigns across multiple screens through YouTube, Google and other video, mobile and social ad networks. Underlying all this technology is Sightly’s core intelligence engine that continuously analyzes campaign data and optimizes around creative, audience targeting, budget, device and ad network variables.

TargetView reduces hours of effort to just minutes, making it scalable and affordable to deliver thousands of tailored ads and campaigns across multi-local brands’ many markets. And, as Google's only video platform partner, Sightly has the only programmatic access to YouTube’s TrueView skipable video ad inventory, the largest and most effective in the industry.

How do retailers leverage your solution?

We believe we offer four major value propositions for retail brands:

1. Reach the shifting audience – With our technology, retailers get to follow the massive new audience (196 million Americans a month, and counting) to all the screens they are watching, and deliver advertising messages through the most compelling medium there is, video.

2. Raise ad performance to a higher level – Retail brands gain remarkable awareness and engagement through our video ad personalization and state of the art targeting that goes beyond just demographics to include contexts, behaviors, locations and devices.

3. Make media dollars work much more efficiently – Our ability to scale personalized ads and micro-targeted campaigns across thousands of retail locations or service areas eliminates the waste inherent in traditional broad geo and audience targeting practices.

4. Lift the performance of your entire marketing mix – The multiplier effect of video advertising pays indirect dividends by boosting the performance of your other paid, owned and earned media by as much as 15 to 300%.

What is your background as CEO and what led to the development of the company?

As a serial entrepreneur, I enjoy starting and building technology companies. I also have a passion for video and have long appreciated its power to deliver messages and connect businesses and buyers. I believe that the technology we’ve built will fundamentally change how people view and interact with advertising—and how retail brands and their creative partners approach their markets.

We are in the midst of a seismic shift from single-screen TV to multi-screen video viewing. Americans now watch a staggering 35 billion video ads each month, five times the 7 billion reported just 24 months ago.

Recent research shows that 75% of advertising agency executives believe online video ads are more effective than TV ads. Just within the past few weeks, the CEO of Omnicom, the second largest ad agency group in the world with leading retail brand clients like Apple and McDonald’s, publicly recommended that their clients move 10% to 25% of their TV advertising dollars to online video advertising. Now brand executives are beginning to see the opportunity in online video advertising as well.

We saw the promise of this inevitable market transformation a while back, and it led us to develop our video advertising platform, TargetView, which enables national ad campaigns to be run at the local level, reaching target audiences where the cash register rings, boosting response rates by as much as 200% and eliminating the dollars that are wasted on over-wash. We feel it provides the industry’s most effective solution for brand awareness and customer acquisition.
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