COLOGNE – Despite the many innovations birthed by the advent of digital marketing, there’s still much to be done to deliver ads to people that don’t annoy them. This is why IBM and its Watson artificial intelligence assets are teaming up with demand-side platform pioneer MediaMath to create an infrastructure that supports cognitive bidding.

The partnership is designed to provide marketers with a neutral, security-rich computing environment along with the ability to maintain ownership of their data through the IBM Cloud.

“It’s about bringing the power of Watson AI into the bidding process, essentially creating real, cognitive bidding in an advertising environment,” MediaMath Chief Marketing Officer Joanna O’Connell explains in this interview with Beet.TV at the 2017 DMEXCO advertising and trade show.

A longtime veteran of the digital space, O’Connell ticks off the many attributes of digital marketing—from omni-channel touch points to real-time decisioning, machine learning from ad impressions to changing the way that siloed organizations can be customer-centric.

“But we have to be honest about the fact that there’s still so much more to do and it’s still not really what we want it to be,” O’Connell says. “It hasn’t fully realized the promise.”

Shortcomings include such infrastructure features as “pixals, header tags, waterfalls” and the like. “Would we have built it that way if we knew how big this industry was going to become, how material, how important? Probably not,” O’Connell says.

IBM and MediaMath say they have a shared worldview and the desire to take the next evolutionary steps together. Under the partnership, those steps are:

  • Develop infrastructure that connects brands, consumers and all of the companies in between in a way that is enterprise-class, open and smart.
  • Infuse AI into real-time marketing decisions across all channels, arming the marketer to do her job better with insights as opposed to reports.
  • Delight the human behind the screen with advertising people don’t just tolerate, but appreciate as entertaining, informative and meaningful.

O’Connell talks about an infrastructure that’s open and extensible, totally secure and safe. And one that provides ad experiences that don’t alienate consumers.

“Imagine if a consumer didn’t only tolerate it but actually loved it. We want to be able to do that. So that’s really what we’re working on.”

This video was produced as part of Beet.TV leadership series from DMEXCO, presented by NBCUniversal. For more videos from the series, please visit this page.