The 20% Rule: The Guiding Principle For Startups

The 20% Rule: The Guiding Principle For Startups

Back in 2009, I was about to quit my job to launch PK4 Media and like most entrepreneurs I sought advice.  I grew up in Silicon Valley and was fortuitous enough to chat with several high-profile pioneers in the technology industry who told me about the 80/20 rule.

The Pareto Principle suggests that 20% of my efforts would produce 80% of my results and I must remain focused on high ROI activities and avoid distractions.

This was very sound advice that helped PK4 Media become the advertising industry’s first omni-channel media company.  As we approach our 10-year anniversary – including three acquisitions – aspiring entrepreneurs now seek my advice, which, aside from making me feel old, I am humbled to give.

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The Ingredients Of Success: How El Bulli Chef Ferran Adria Shaped My Company

The Ingredients Of Success: How El Bulli Chef Ferran Adria Shaped My Company

As an entrepreneur who founded the advertising industry’s first Omni-Channel media company, I often get asked how I got my business off the ground.

While there are many factors that lead to success, one reason is not related to advertising at all.  Like everyone else these days, I am a foodie seeking the ideal culinary experience from Michelin star rated restaurants and chefs.

In the summer of 2002, a sequence of fortuitous events allowed me to be the only non-chef to ever work in Chef Ferran Adria kitchen at El Bulli.

Most people do not realize that a world-class Chef is also an entrepreneur, owner and CEO.  Working at the chef’s table in El Bulli allowed me to learn from one of the best CEOs in the world.

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Super Bowl: Why $5 Million for 30 Seconds May No Longer Make Sense

Super Bowl: Why $5 Million for 30 Seconds May No Longer Make Sense

In a world with an ever-growing number of touchpoints, does spending $5 million for 30 seconds still make sense?

Back in 2011, a handful of brands began to pre-promote their Super Bowl television spots on digital and social media. It was an unprecedented concept to “build buzz” in the lead up to the game. The groundbreaking tactic received national coverage in the New York Times. Companies such as Best Buy, Coca-Cola, and Mercedes-Benz realized that if they were paying $2.8 million for 30-seconds of TV time – or approximately $100,000 per second – that they needed to maximize return on investment by leveraging platforms like Facebook and Twitter.

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Digiday Video Awards Names PK4 Media Finalist for "Best Video Ad Tech Innovation"

Digiday Video Awards Names PK4 Media Finalist for "Best Video Ad Tech Innovation"

PK4 Media has been named a finalist by Digiday Video Awards in the "Best Video Ad Tech Innovation" category.

PK4 was selected for introducing TruEngage, the first customizable technology that creates interactive overlays on top of video pre-roll ads. PK4 is being recognized for the success of its TruEngage KitchenAid Mini-Mixer campaign. The campaign resulted in a 468% increase in brand lift for purchase intent measured by Nielsen.

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3 Digital Advertising Trends to Help Challenger Brands Become Champions in 2018

3 Digital Advertising Trends to Help Challenger Brands Become Champions in 2018

In 2017, Advertising Age reported that digital advertising spends surpassed TV for the first time. The explosion of digital – including its rapidly changing opportunities and challenges – will give challenger brands more than a puncher's chance to become champions in 2018.

Companies such as Coca-Cola, L'Oréal and Nike are the current heavyweight champions of their respective industries. Does that mean all other brands should concede and head home?

The answer is an emphatic no. Challenger brands that leverage cutting-edge advertising trends and technologies will be able to overcome deficits in infrastructure, budget and manpower on unprecedented levels in 2018.

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Knowing When To Exit: Why I Turned Down a $30 Million Offer

Knowing When To Exit: Why I Turned Down a $30 Million Offer

I launched PK4 Media eight years ago as the advertising industries first Omni-Channel media company.  Having worked in the industry for many years, I saw pain points and opportunities to solve them.

After several years, we became a multimillion dollar business. Our proprietary XPS technology was serving, monitoring and collecting data on ads across all platforms.  This was when everyone was focused on migrating from websites to mobile content.  We knew that the ability to provide a seamless customer journey across all platforms was the future.

I was not seeking an exit but had regularly received offers through the years of up to $30+ million to buy PK4 Media.  After some deliberation, I turned down those offers.

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PK4 Media, Inc. Named One Of The "Best Entrepreneurial Companies of America" By Entrepreneur Magazine's 2017 Entrepreneur360 List

PK4 Media, Inc. Named One Of The "Best Entrepreneurial Companies of America" By Entrepreneur Magazine's 2017 Entrepreneur360 List

PK4 Media, Inc. was recently recognized as one of the "Best Entrepreneurial Companies in America" by Entrepreneur magazine's Entrepreneur360™ List, a premier study delivering the most comprehensive analysis of private companies in America. Based on this study forged by Entrepreneur, PK4 Media is recognized as a well-rounded company that has mastered a balance of impact, innovation, growth and leadership.

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Don't Freak Out: How I Stopped a Fortune 500 Company From Stealing Our Intellectual Property

Don't Freak Out: How I Stopped a Fortune 500 Company From Stealing Our Intellectual Property

Back in 2012, my digital advertising company PK4 Media had several clients.  We were bootstrapping and had positive cash flow but I was ready to take it to the next level.

In the rapidly evolving digital advertising landscape, new ideas and cutting-edge technology are what separate those who succeed and those who fail.

There were two instances, where our technology was nearly stolen -- once by a Fortune 500 company and once from my own protégé.  Here is how it happened, how we prevented it from happening, and what we learned about how to protect our intellectual property.

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PK4 Media is Ranked #227 on the 2017 Entrepreneur 360 Best Entrepreneurial Companies of America List

PK4 Media is Ranked #227 on the 2017 Entrepreneur 360 Best Entrepreneurial Companies of America List

We have this crazy idea at Entrepreneur: We want to identify 360 small businesses each year that are mastering the art and science of growing a business. To do this, we invited companies to apply and evaluated them based on four metrics: impact, innovation, growth, and leadership. The result is our Entrepreneur 360 list.

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5 Reasons to Ditch Programmatic for Private Marketplaces

5 Reasons to Ditch Programmatic for Private Marketplaces

Tesla and SpaceX CEO Elon Musk said it best: “If humans are to survive, we must merge with machines.”

As a long-time CEO in the rapidly evolving digital advertising community, what I am about to say may be seen as sacrilegious by some of my contemporaries: Advertisers need to spend less budget on programmatic.

This is not a war on programmatic, it is a necessary and nuanced evolution to avoid certain pitfalls.

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Digital Video Ad Effectiveness: YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat and More

Digital Video Ad Effectiveness: YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat and More

“Digital is more effective because it’s trackable. We’re able to see in real time if users are engaging with the brand. We know exactly what that’s worth and we can make actual decisions on it, so there are many benefits to having that digital video component.” —Tom Alexander, PK4 Media

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Discovery Channel show urges viewers to build a shelter and skip its ad

Discovery Channel show urges viewers to build a shelter and skip its ad

Dive Brief:

  • Original Productions, the producer of "Deadliest Catch" and "Jay Leno’s Garage," is rolling out the new series "Bushcraft Build-Off" on Discovery Channel on Nov. 14. To build awareness, the company is partnering with PK4 Media on a digital advertising campaign, per a press release made available to Marketing Dive.
  • As part of the multichannel campaign, one format is an interactive branded “skip this ad” solution using PK4’s TruEngage technology. Browsers see a lean-to in the woods and have the option to drag branches over to it to make a roof and skip the rest of the ad. Once the branches have been moved, the ad skips to a screen telling viewers when and where the show airs and then disappears. 
  • The omni-channel campaign will target reality show viewers using PK4's audience segments.
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American Media, Inc. and PK4 Media Announce Exclusive Partnership To Deliver New Branded Content Products to Marketers

American Media, Inc. and PK4 Media Announce Exclusive Partnership To Deliver New Branded Content Products to Marketers

NEW YORK, Oct. 31, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- American Media, Inc. (AMI) today announced that it is partnering with PK4 Media (PK4) in an industry-first collaboration to create custom content solutions for marketers. The collaboration combines the talents of AMI's Branded Content Studio with PK4's proprietary omni-channel platform, to deliver new content solutions designed to engage consumers with clients' products, brands and services.

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How PMP can help prevent fraud and programmatic lawsuits

How PMP can help prevent fraud and programmatic lawsuits

Tesla and SpaceX CEO Elon Musk summed it up best when he said, "If humans are to survive, we must merge with machines." What I am about to say may be seen by some of my contemporaries as sacrilegious. But advertisers need to spend less of their budget on programmatic as we know it. This is not a war on programmatic. It is a necessary and nuanced evolution to avoid certain pitfalls. 

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Omnichannel: The Secret to Digital Advertising Success [Infographic]

Omnichannel: The Secret to Digital Advertising Success [Infographic]

We often hear the terms "multichannel marketing" and "omnichannel marketing," and in the past we have explored the differences between those two strategies.

Today, we'll focus on the omnichannel approach, which—when done well—creates a multifaceted yet seamless customer experience across the different channels that a customer might use to engage with a brand.

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Why Different Video Ad Channels Require Different Success Metrics

Why Different Video Ad Channels Require Different Success Metrics

Completion rate is often considered the reigning king of success metrics for video content, but it’s not always the only—or best—way to measure campaign effectiveness. Tom Alexander, founder and CEO of video advertising platform PK4 Media, spoke with eMarketer’s Sean Creamer about why the best metric for measuring success depends on the channel.

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PK4 Media: Omnichannel Platform Digitally Tracks Consumers at Home & at the Mall

PK4 Media: Omnichannel Platform Digitally Tracks Consumers at Home & at the Mall

Digital marketing has been a game-changer with marketing attribution and judging success rates. Now PK4 Media is working to bridge that digital verification with tangible results from marketing in the physical world.

PK4’s founder and CEO, Tom Alexander, discussed the company’s progress, process, and prospects with Open Mobile Media’s Robert Gray.

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