It may have just bought ad-funded Mashable, but Ziff Davis’ portfolio was already stuffed with tech and lifestyle media brands. So how does the publisher plan to adapt to latest ad-tech trends?

In this video interview with Beet.TV, Ziff Davis ad ops VP Michael Irenski explains the company likes to roll up its sleeves.

Case in point is the introduction header bidding, the technology which now allows publishers to entertain bids from multiple demand sources simultaneously to achieve higher yield.

This September, Rubicon Project, PubMatic and AppNexus launched, an open-source version of the client-side Javascript “wrappers” on which header bidding depends.

“With wrappers, at Ziff Davis we were early adopter of pre-bid,” Irenski says. “The philosophy at Ziff Davis is we’re very do it yourself and we believe in building our own solutions, our own ad tech.

“When we found out that pre-bid, being open-source, would allow us to really customize it and get nuance with it, we were really excited. We jumped all in into the deep end.

“It was a bit of a learning process and we have over 120 websites that we had to onboard and come up with solutions for. But … we felt like (it took) bid and auction dynamics out of the ad server… That was something we were really excited for.”

Ziff Davis also has its own in-house demand-side platform – or, if you like, a “DYI DMP”. The flip side, says Irenski, is ad-tech can be “a heavy lift”.

“It’s not really a set it and forget it solution,” he says. “We love our solution but it’s something that’s it’s a lot of work.” But Irenski says the company’s programmatic-direct business has “skyrocketed”.

This segment is part of a Beet.TV series on innovation in programmatic advertising around header bidding and wrappers.  The series is presented by PubMatic.  For more videos from the series, please visit this page