Q: What is the IAB Tech Lab’s Global Strategy?
A: Our mission is to “Engage a member community globally to develop foundational technology and standards that enable growth and trust in the digital media ecosystem.” We are focused on the following themes:
- Brand Safety
- Consumer Experience & Safety
- Identity & Privacy
- Advertising Effectiveness
We address them by developing foundational technologies to support
- Transparent, safe, effective supply chain
- Scalable & more consistent measurement
- Higher-quality consumer advertising experiences
- Responsible use of data
Q: What are adoption rates globally for Tech Lab’s standards?
A: While it is not possible to assess specific adoption metrics for most of our standards, since companies don’t have to be members to adopt our standards and since most of the standards don’t run through central systems or require registration or other mechanisms that could assess usage, below are the top 10 visiting countries for standards pages on our website, which provides a proxy for engagement with our work:
This provides some indication of the reach of our standards, but it would be helpful to have national/regional support in further assessing current and planned adoption — by surveying members or via other means.
Q: What are IAB Tech Lab’s priority geographic markets?
A: We prioritize markets where the digital advertising industry is facing the challenges of multi-party technological integrations potentially across borders, where educational needs are most acute, where innovation is occurring, and where the local resources and infrastructure supports our efforts.
Priority markets include:
- Europe, with focus on:
- China (TBD)
We are pleased to engage in other markets based on demand from IABs and members.
Q: What is the IAB Tech Lab’s strategy and approach for these markets?
A: Especially in our priority markets, we seek local supporters to help identify opportunities to:
- reach out (ideally jointly) to receptive prospects for membership
- better understand local/regional differences, needs, and priorities that should be incorporated into our work
- further drive and support adoption
Our initial structured foray in this regard is to partner with IABs globally, to provide a benefit to their members and to create a “virtuous cycle” in which local member engagement leads to increasingly relevant, useful, and adopted standards from Tech Lab.
This is all generally consistent with the engagement model we proposed at the 2017 IAB Global Summit and have discussed and refined in quarterly regional meetings this year. It’s an important step in gaining deeper engagement with associations and companies globally – and we’re making pretty good progress, with over 40 IABs signed as members and a gradually growing base of member companies outside of the US.
We want to work together to make this more robust in 2019.
Q: Can you please provide an updated working group member list highlighting those who are most active? Please include global members with active participation and their representatives.
A: We have approximately 30 working groups at this time, each with 35-300+ representatives from 25 to 150 companies. Most of the >1000 member companies that are active in our working groups have global footprints, and who they assign to our working groups is at their discretion – though we can certainly influence them to add more representation for specific markets with guidance from you and others. If we move forward, it would be good to discuss strengthening ties with in-region employees of our mutual member companies. Full details of groups and participants are at https://iabtechlab.com/working-groups/
Q: What is the frequency/timing of working group meetings and how many reps per company are allowed per working group? What is the approximate number of hours per month of commitment and minimum acceptance for participation?
A: Working groups generally meet bi-weekly, depending on near-term release plans. We operate them via BlueJeans (conference call and screen sharing software) and have corresponding Slack channels for many groups. Meetings are typically 1 hour long but a few groups meet for 2 hours, and we occasionally hold longer sessions if needed to work through complex issues. Timing has been biased towards US and Europe at this point, but we’re happy to host additional meetings or engage with local groups pending further discussion of what you/we think will work best. We don’t remove members for lack of participation, though we (of course) want members to be as active as possible. We generally limit companies to 3 representatives per working group but there are exceptions, provided we feel the groups remain balanced.
Q: Can people or companies who aren’t IAB Tech Lab members be involved in working groups?
A: We allow each IAB outside of the US to nominate, for no fee, a small number of non (Tech Lab) members as representatives of their IAB within Tech Lab working groups. These people can help shape the future of technical standards to meet the needs of the market as they see fit and can be first to know what’s going to be released. We do need to ensure these people are only representing your organization and not their companies (unless they become direct members) but they will still gain influence and insight.
Please note that working groups spawn new features and projects, based on members’ input and priorities — so participants are critical in influencing our plans overall. Also note that we may not want the most senior company leaders — many of the most active participants in Tech Lab are very hands-on with technology while holding moderately senior positions. Related, we definitely want product/technology and perhaps ad ops people to be the active participants. Tech Lab members generally do not view their role as “consulting to competitors”. The reason to participate is to guide standards development so it is informed by one’s company’s/organization’s goals – which then results in tangible value to the member company.
Q: What is the expectation of IABs in terms of their partnership with Tech Lab, including administrative, operational, and commercial needs?
A: We would ask you to participate in regional quarterly calls, assign your staff and appropriate members to working groups, facilitate communication of Tech Lab’s work in market, and support adoption of our work with relevant parties. We understand that your board and membership apply resources to specific projects, each with their own deliverables and timelines, and we would ask to work jointly with you on those — to the extent we see a clear overlap and opportunity. We also ask for support in identifying prospective members and Tech Lab product/service customers, both of which trigger referral payments to you (from $500 to $5000). There are no referral requirements to maintaining membership with Tech Lab at this time.
Q: Where do I learn more about DigiTrust?
A: Below are useful links relating to DigiTrust:
- View the current list of DigiTrust members here
- A New Chapter for DigiTrust (blog post)
- DigiTrust overview slides – if you receive any questions when sharing this with your members, we will be more than happy to set up a dedicated call with them to discuss DigiTrust in further detail
- IAB Tech Lab 2019 Roadmap
- Demystifying Identifiers and Understanding Their Critical Roles in Advertising (blog post)
- Descriptions of CBA/MRC/TAG/Tech Lab/DigiTrust – to help bring clarify to what all of these organizations do. We hope this is helpful but welcome your feedback.