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It's been a big week for us at Kiip. It's not every week you get a chance to unveil a campaign that represents not just a tremendous advance for your company, but for the industry as a whole. In case you missed it, this week we announced the launch of the first-ever blockchain mobile ad campaign, in partnership with AB InBev.
This announcement has been a long time in the making. When we started digging into blockchain’s potential impact on our business, we began to realize very simply that if Kiip was started today, it would be built on blockchain technology. As this realization started dawning on us, we began to architect what we would do to begin rolling this out.
Unfortunately we also realized that a lot of other companies had jumped on the bandwagon too. We also saw a lot of misinformation and confusion. People mixing up cryptocurrencies (and the fluctuations and hype that came with them) with blockchain technology that could fundamentally help the advertising ecosystem. We realized that the best way to show the potential impact was to show real use cases, and to publicly explain our roll out plan in clear English so that people would believe blockchain’s immediate impact, and trust our ability to bring the technology, as it develops at lightning speed, to the broader market.
Blockchain’s magical impact comes in the form of its immutable ledger technology that is stored in thousands of nodes. In English, this means data that is stored uniquely in thousands of servers that can never be manipulated. It helps identify unique things very very well, and it also helps track those unique things down a supply chain. We saw this technology’s potential to impact several major areas:
- Transparency along the supply chain
- Reconciliation and third party ad verification (for billing and for viewability/fraud)
- Revenue share models with publishers
- Acknowledging the end consumer
So today, we are tackling the first two with the first phase of our blockchain roll out. In partnership with AB InBev, we’re now live with what we are calling the “single ledger.” In short, we are writing the campaign data of our campaigns with AB InBev to the Ethereum blockchain, and we are providing keys to the DSPs, agency, and client to audit the campaign data. We have functionality that allows the DSP, SSP, and other players to also write data to the same blockchain and to enable automatic reconciliation occur in future campaigns through smart contracts. In short, we’re helping solve the core issue of everyone agreeing on what to pay each other for through a private-public blockchain. All the campaign data is encrypted and only accessible to those with the keys.
It’s my pleasure to be partnering with Miguel Patricio, Chief Marketing Officer of AB InBev, and Lucas Herscovici, Global Marketing Vice President of Consumer Connections, Insights and Innovation, to innovate on this program. Both Miguel and Lucas are marketing pioneers, innovators, and leaders in their field. AB InBev has been at the forefront of major consumer-facing technology changes. It only seemed natural to pioneer usage of blockchain in changing ultimately how advertising is managed and delivered to the consumer. AB InBev is the first ever beverage brand to run an advertising blockchain initiative.
To elaborate on our blockchain path at Kiip: we are doing our blockchain rollout in two stages. This is due to several factors: regulatory, technological, and industry education. Although some may believe that the blockchain technology is circa Internet in the late ’90s, we see enough innovation and lightning-speed development that key issues like latency are addressed within months, not years. However, today, we are leveraging a unique blockchain storage technology called IPFS (interplanetary file system) and periodically writing to the blockchain, and not relying on the blockchain to clear hundreds of thousands of transactions in near-real-time. That step will be important to ensure 100 percent trust in a decentralized system, but we are utilizing a central model to slingshot adoption and speed of development.
In our second stage, we have been developing a tokenization of our media called Koin. Koin will enable brands to buy media and to orchestrate campaigns intelligently using self-clearing smart contracts. This will include the “single ledger” functionality. It will also be the very mechanism that our developers will be paid, and will also, excitingly, reward the end the consumer. We foresee that the Koin functionality for the end consumer will vary - but two of the potential use cases could be for the consumer to use Koin for goods and services in the apps that they saw the ad in, and/or be able to use Koin for goods and services from the very brand that served the ad. With Koin, developers will be able to be paid more quickly, and consumers will feel (finally) acknowledged for interacting with ads. This acknowledgment is also designed to encourage a thriving digital economy, which in turns helps the publisher/developer, and the advertiser.
This flow is one that we are more than thrilled about. I am excited to unveil Kiip, blockchain-enabled, to the rest of the world. We will start with the Single Ledger, and we can’t wait to see Koin become a reality as well.
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