If new retail media upstarts are the Davids in a battle against tech-giant Goliaths, could machine learning be the sling that helps them topple their powerful foes?

David Simon, GM, Growth Initiatives, Moloco, thinks so. Moloco is a retail media platform offering a machine learning-powered demand-side platform (DSP) to ecommerce operators, helping them to open up virtual shelf space as ad inventory.

As sponsor of the upcoming Beet Retreat Santa Monica 2023, Moloco and Simon will be sharing insights from the intersection of retail media and ML.

Machine Learning: Transforming the Media Landscape

In this curtain-raising preview, Simon says Google, Facebook and Amazon have consumed 96 cents out of every new dollar that has come into digital advertising

“They’ve built a better mousetrap, and that mousetrap is powered by machine learning,” Simon asserts. “My hope for Beet Retreat is to convey the power of machine learning.”

He sees machine learning as the engine that’s poised to drive the transition media buying has to undergo.

But it’s not just about media buying and selling, Simon says: “It’s everything from understanding your audience, to understanding how your data flows can plug into machine learning in a way that’s unique and differentiated from how we’ve been buying and selling media for the last 50 or 75 years.”

Simon’s goal is to help marketers and publishers understand how to leverage this new technology, which he thinks is “misunderstood and not really well appreciated” at the moment.

The Perfect Match: Retail Media and Machine Learning

One sector where machine learning is gaining considerable traction is retail media.

In fact, Simon thinks the two are a match made in heaven.

“If there was a purpose-built industry for machine learning, retail media would be it,” Simon enthuses.

With billions of transactions being made online daily, Simon sees a goldmine of data for machine learning to run on.