Today I am very excited and privileged to join the OpenX team and community as CEO. I am excited for all the normal reasons one joins a start-up – a small, fast-growing company driven by a compelling set of customer needs and a passionate, energetic team of people with lots of big questions to answer.
But, I am truly excited for a couple of reasons more specific to OpenX.
First, I believe OpenX has the potential to substantially improve advertising in a truly accessible, open and controllable way for an increasingly wide array of publishers and advertisers.
So what? Well, to me, the most exciting thing about the online economy has been the way it helps more businesses flourish around the world – genuine macro-economic value creation if you will. For example, when I was at GoTo.com in the early days, we were on a clear mission: to help drive the growth of small businesses by enabling them to affordably reach their customers online. We aimed to do this through the simple yet powerful idea of providing pay-for-performance, auction-priced CPC search ads to anyone. At the time (particularly 1999-2001), plenty of people thought we were nuts… but over time the model proved itself and now CPC search ads are the foundation for much of the online economy.
I think OpenX can do a lot to help drive another similar explosion of value creation in the online advertising industry. It has the potential to open up the advertising marketplace through a genuinely transparent, participatory ad infrastructure for publishers, advertisers and ad networks.
Which leads right into my second, very related, source of excitement: the open community participation model OpenX thrives on. I think this community involvement can help us more rapidly understand, develop and deliver compelling products for publishers around the world with customers engaged every step of the way.
So what am I going to be doing? Over the next few weeks I am going to be primarily focused on 3 main areas:
1. Further building out our great team.
<start shameless recruiting plug :-> In particular, if you are a great, highly motivated technologist interested in working at the intersection of advertising technology, open-source and new advertising business models, we’d love to hear from you. Please contact us at: email@example.com
2. Fully understanding our customers’ needs and how to create the best possible way for our community to participate.
If you use our products, have considered using them, want to contribute ideas or time to the further development of OpenX or just have feedback of any kind, please don’t hesitate to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
3. Expanding and accelerating our product roadmap to deliver more value to our community of publishers faster.
Yup, alongside some of the big future plans we have, we also know we need to go faster to get the basics right. Therefore we are very focused on the stability and performance of our core products. See also Scott’s recent post on our priorities.
I very much look forward to all your input and dialogue.