Say Hello to Marceline

Posted December 16th, 2013 by Soren Macbeth in Storm, Clojure, Data, Analytics


Yieldbot is pleased to announce the public release of Marceline, A Clojure DSL for Trident.

Storm plays a central role in Yieldbot’s real-time data processing systems. From data collection and ETL, to powering on-line machine learning algorithms, we rely heavily on Storm to process vast amount of data efficiently. Trident is a high level abstraction on top of Storm, analogous to Cascading for Hadoop. Trident, like Cascading is written is written in Java. This simply would not do.

Clojure, a lisp dialect which runs on the JVM, forms that base of the software stack for the data team at Yieldbot. We love Clojure because it allows us to quickly and interactively build our data processing systems and machine learning algorithms. Clojure gives us the REPL based development of a dynamic, functional language with the performance and stability of the JVM. With Marceline, we get the best of both worlds by being able to develop and test our Trident topologies in Clojure, uberjar them up and ship them off to our production environments.

Marceline is still young, but we have been running in production without issue. For more information about how to use it, including examples, please see the README on github. Special Thanks to Dan Herrera and Steven Surgnier for their help in testing, writing documentation and providing additional examples.

— @sorenmacbeth

Real-time Relevance Matters on Cyber Monday

Posted December 4th, 2013 by Jonathan Mendez in Advertising , CPC, real-time, conversion, CTR


Digital ads specifically messaging to Cyber Monday greatly outperformed ads that did not mention it.

From its early incarnation by, Cyber Monday has turned into an online holiday shopping benchmark. At Yieldbot we decided to take a look across our retail advertiser base consisting of some of the largest brands and retailers in the world to see how advertisers that took advantage of this 24-hour period fared compared to those that did not modify their messaging specifically for Cyber Monday.

Our dataset includes almost a dozen retailers running millions of impressions and receiving over ten thousand clicks and hundreds of conversions during Cyber Monday on the Yieldbot platform. We compared this same dataset of advertisers to last Tuesday that we picked because it was far enough away from Thanksgiving Day and Black Friday behavior that could skew the data but close enough to Cyber Monday for data consistency.

The results show that overall there was heightened consumer purchase intent on Cyber Monday. However, marketers that took advantage of the contextual real-time relevance of the day fared significantly better.

CTR on ads without Cyber Monday messaging increased 12%

CTR on ads with Cyber Monday messaging increased 43%

For the more important conversion rate the performance difference was striking.

Conversion Rate on ads without Cyber Monday messaging increased 15%

Conversion Rate on ads with Cyber Monday messaging increased 225%

Conclusion: Being able to adjust messaging to real-time context is a marketing practice that demands more attention. Advertisers and Marketers that do this will increasingly come out on top in the hyper-competitive fight for consumer attention and action.

How Yieldbot Influences Consumer Actions Online and In-Store

Posted December 2nd, 2013 by Jonathan Mendez in Advertising , CPC, Performance


Driving Coupon Conversions and Measurable Lift in Purchase Intent

Search is often leveraged to “close the loop” for other marketing channels. Some go as far to call it “the net” for its success catching previously exposed consumers and funneling them to online purchase or brand engagements. Display and traditional advertising are generally utilized to fill that proverbial “intent” net and build demand for specific products and lift in brand metrics. In tandem and through measurable attribution models they work to fulfill an efficient customer acquisition funnel.

Yieldbot has created a new marketing channel in the premium publisher environment leveraging intent signals and the buying and matching principles of Search (1st party data, in-session/real-time matching, CPC pricing, and keyword targeted ad creative) that does both. Yieldbot closes the loop on consumers by meeting the real-time consumer intent with a relevant ad to drive immediate action and builds demand for products by putting in-view, visible relevant ads when consumers are most receptive to the message, during lean forward content experiences ultimately increasing the likelihood of ad engagement and message receptivity.

As evidence, a major food brand was bringing a new product to market. Their major holding company Search agency ran a campaign using Yieldbot with the goal to drive offline/in-store purchases. To measure effectiveness of the campaign, Yieldbot, in partnership with Nielsen, ran a control vs. expose study to measure Yieldbot’s effectiveness with respect to consumer purchase intent and utilized a 3rd party ad serving tracking technology to measure coupon downloads that occurred on the food brand’s website.

For this brand the Yieldbot campaign was crafted into several thematic groups of keywords, creative and publishers. The keywords (used as proxy for the consumer’s real-time intent) and ads (HTML text) were matched with each other based on messaging. Additionally, the ads are written to match with the context of the publishers in the grouping and their design automatically matched by Yieldbot to the look and feel of each publisher. This combination creates hyper relevance and allows for a seamless consumer experience.

The campaign results spoke volumes. Yieldbot, targeting real-time intent groups for energy, healthy living, fitness, wellness, and healthy eating drove a campaign average 19% coupon download rate, and a 33.7% lift in consumer purchase intent for those that either “definitely will” or “probably will” purchase the product within the next 30 days. Additionally, the campaign drove 6x above industry average engagement rates (CTR). We were not given specific data points for other marketing channels (Search, display, video) however when budget cuts for the brand had to be made Yieldbot was still standing.

The campaign’s success can be attributed to three major components:

  1. Text ads built specifically for the Yieldbot publisher marketplace. The Yieldbot marketplace leverages the same principles as Search, as mentioned; however there is an added layer of data that Yieldbot sees in order to determine intent, the publisher environment. It must be taken into consideration to ensure hyper relevance.
  2. Custom premium publisher marketplace and above the fold placements. The Yieldbot marketplace is comprised of the most premium publishers on the web including the websites of 3 of the 5 largest magazine corporations in the world. These environments contain the highest value and most desired consumers for advertisers. Yieldbot technology and algorithms matched the desired intent, demographics, and psychographics for the advertiser. Also, all ads in the Yieldbot marketplace are delivered in above the fold placements significantly increasing viewability and overall effectiveness.
  3. 1st party data used to target real-time intent. Yieldbot captures, organizes and activates 1st party data from the visitor click-streams our publishing partners to inform ad decisioning. An ad is delivered only if there is a real-time match of intent and advertiser on that specific page-view. No 3rd party cookies, no unknown URLs. The Yieldbot technology is constantly running machine learning and using pattern recognition across these click-streams and pages to deliver the benefits of relevance to the advertiser, the publisher and most of all, the consumer.

Publisher Traffic and Ad Performance from Social Networks

Posted September 19th, 2013 by admin in Insight


The Yieldbot platform sees over a billion and a half page-views monthly across leading premium publishers, with a cross-section of the web’s largest and best women’s programming; food/recipe, home/garden and health/wellness. Many of these sites are active programmers on a range of social platforms from Facebook to Pinterest to Tumblr to Twitter. The following data from Yieldbot shows the level of traffic and engagement with ads is highly variable.

Social Media as a Traffic Source

Pinterest is by far the largest source of social media traffic to publishers on the Yieldbot platform. “Pinning” is known to be a common activity in women’s programming verticals, including style, hobbies and projects, like home improvement

Yieldbot Monthly Page Views Index by Original Referrer Source

The above data shows Pinterest dominance as a domain referrer source to publishers. Interesting in that this dominance does not extend to mobile where Facebook greatly outperforms Pinterest. Also interesting is that Publishers are not generating any significant visitors from Tumblr or Twitter.

Ad Engagement from Social Media Traffic

While Pinterest desktop drives the most social platform traffic by far to publishers on the Yieldbot platform the performance of advertisers (as defined by CTR) is below par relative to other sources of social traffic.

Yieldbot Advertiser CTR Index by Original Referrer Source

Key Findings:

1) Social media presents a rich and large opportunity for driving traffic to premium publishers, especially from Pinterest, but publishers need to do a better job of generating volume on Facebook. Both Tumblr and Twitter, despite their large audiences are virtually meaningless to publishers as a traffic source.

2) Ad engagement, as defined by CTR, indexes higher from Facebook than other social platforms. Increases in traffic from Facebook will benefit the publisher’s advertisers given the high CTR levels.

Action Items:

1) Social traffic is not performing well in content because the ads are not geared toward social referrers. Huge upside here. We call this the “inbound social” opportunity.

2) Non social referred traffic is clicking at higher rates so why not push this traffic to social presences of brands. We call this the “outbound social” opportunity.

Introducing Our Real Time Intent Reporting Tool

Posted July 3rd, 2013 by admin in Company News


This post celebrates an anniversary. A year ago today and based on two years of prior work building our real-time intent technology, we launched what we think is by far the best business model for the web. We launched a real-time keyword marketplace. It’s one of the few ever created outside of Search.

A year ago we started with 3 publisher web sites and 1 advertiser. Yieldbot now is deployed on over 60 premium websites and content networks within the three verticals serving 125 cost-per-click campaigns.

We all love stats at Yieldbot so here are some more stats about Yieldbot.
Yieldbot crunches 14TB of data a day

Revenue has doubled every 2 months since launch.
The most important stat is of course results. The vast majority of Yieldbot advertisers get performance at or exceeding their Search Marketing efforts. Our work has no precedent there.

Our second advertiser gave us an idea we were onto something. After 6 weeks buying on Yieldbot they reported that our conversion rate was 35% better than Paid Search. Then our third advertiser told us a similar story. We’ve kept hearing it and it never gets old.

Yieldbot marketplace connects the two largest channels of digital ad supply and demand. Premium publishers get the performance technology they absolutely need to survive digital. Search Marketers get much-needed new inventory. Parties that never did business with each other before now do it transparently and in real-time through Yieldbot. It’s a wonderful thing to behold.

You might be asking yourself how does this work? What is Real-Time Intent?
People browse the web with purpose and direction. A real-time “why” is the most powerful targeting dimension Marketing has ever known.

Yieldbot works to understand the real time “why” a person is clicking to any and every page of web page. We do this through our advanced keyword navigation path analytics, our applied data science and our intelligent real-time match decisions.
So one year in and we’ve won the trust of many of the leading media brands and advertising budgets on the web. Now it’s time for Yieldbot to build on that foundation. We’ve launched our Mobile solution and our real-time intent has caught interest in Social advertisers as well as Search. We’re psyched.

We still fully manage the campaigns ourselves and source our own demand. Until we fully make it a self -serve business we know to a large extent we cannot truly be a market. We are working towards opening Yieldbot up through APIs to a number of demand partners by early 2014.

Real-time click-stream intelligence is an area where few have ever ventured. Our data science team, our engineering team, our sales and business development team and our account strategy teams are learning for ourselves what Yieldbot is, what it can be and what it should be. The early results are astounding to even us. Year 1 was an incredible journey. The journey continues. We hope you join us on it.

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Yieldbot In the News

RTB’s Fatal Flaw: It’s too slow

From Digiday posted September 23rd, 2014 in Company News

I have some bad news for real-time bidding. The Web is getting faster, and RTB is about to be left behind. Now, 120 milliseconds is becoming too long to make the necessary computations prior to page load that many of today’s systems have been built around.

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Yieldbot Hands Publishers A New Way to Leverage Their First-Party Data

From Ad Exchanger posted September 23rd, 2014 in Company News

Yieldbot, whose technology looks at a user’s clickstream and search data in order to determine likeliness to buy, is extending its business to give publishers a new way to monetize their first-party data.

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Yieldbot Raises $18 Million to Advance Search-Style Display Buying

From AdAge posted September 23rd, 2014 in Company News

Yieldbot, a New York based ad-tech company that lets advertisers buy display ads via search-style keywords, has raised a $18 million series B round of funding

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Much Ado About Native Ads

From Digiday posted December 5th, 2013 in Company News

The most amazing thing about the Federal Trade Commission’s workshop about native advertising Wednesday morning is that it happened at all. As Yieldbot CEO Jonathan Mendez noted...

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Pinterest Dominates Social Referrals, But Facebook Drives Higher Performance [Study]

From Marketing Land posted October 3rd, 2013 in Company News

Publishers in women’s programming verticals such as food and recipes, home and garden, style and health and wellness have found a deep, high volume source of referral traffic from Pinterest.

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Pinterest Sends Your Site More Traffic, Study Says, but Maybe Not the Kind You Want

From Ad Age posted October 3rd, 2013 in Company News

Pinterest may have quickly arrived as a major source of traffic to many websites, but those visitors may click on the ads they see there less often than others.

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