SalesTechStar Interview with Kayode Ijaola, Head of Platform Operations at Hawk (formerly TabMo)

Kayode Ijaola, Head of Platform Operations at Hawk (formerly TabMo) shares some insights on today’s evolving adtech space while talking about what’s relevant and not in today’s must-have media mix:


Hi Kayode, we’d love to hear about your journey through the years…tell us more about your role at TabMo?

I joined Hawk Platform (the evolved name for TabMo) earlier this year from MiQ where I was responsible for a team managing programmatic activation for some of the UK’s largest agency holding companies. From day one I was blown away by the energy and ambition of the whole Hawk Platform team.  My role involves using the knowledge I’ve gained during my career in terms of the management and strategic direction of programmatic activation; it also expands my reach to the operational development of our cross channel self-service DSP Hawk, so, along with our Montpelier-based product team, I work closely with agency and client partners to ensure that campaigns deliver results.

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We’d love to hear more about Hawk and how it’s evolved?

TabMo was founded in Paris in 2013 and launched Hawk, a mobile and tablet focused DSP, three years later.  The decision by company founders (Hakim Metmer and Renaud Biet) to forego cookie-based data in favour of a Device ID based approach has fuelled its development over the last five years.  It’s also meant that we are well-placed to navigate the recent regulations on data and privacy, as well as make the most of the growing opportunities to advance our strong privacy-first offering into emerging programmatic channels such as digital out-of-home (DOOH), audio and connected TV (CTV). Hawk uses the same data currency across all these channels, so the connection is true and seamless, enabling us to activate, measure and analyse powerful omnichannel campaigns. With our compliant identity resolution approach, we will continue to increase our scale and coverage, all the while maintaining the privacy standards expected of us from consumers.

In what ways are you seeing trends change when brands use a media mix that includes OOH and mobile/audio, connected TV advertising with their digital marketing plans?

Introducing automation to these emerging channels has presented the market with a fresh set of challenges; how do we reach a target audience when there is so much disparity in how behavioural or demographic trends are analysed and understood across each? Traditional mobile display lets advertisers target people on a one-to-one basis based on their online behaviour; in contrast, the same DOOH or CTV ad impression is likely to be seen by multiple consumers with different profiles. Marketers now need to be smarter with their use of data to ensure consistency and relevancy across all channels. Equally, advertisers have shown a willingness to be more open and experimental with data activation, with the upshot that there is increasing market demand for technology to facilitate the understanding of consumer behaviour across all channels. This feeds into Hawk Platform’s mission to enable brands to activate true cross channel campaigns with a transparent and accurate targeting strategy that benefits advertisers and consumers.

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What are some core advertising technologies that you feel are now changing the digital media and adtech game?

Identity resolution is a really interesting space for marketers at the moment.  Advertising is often faced with unexpected hurdles that call for the entire industry to pivot their business strategies to stay relevant and compliant; the sector’s agility means that the response to these challenges can result in an even greater opportunity for marketers – and identity resolution is no different.

There are currently a number of technologies in development that seek to address the changing data-landscape, but the fragmentation of the addressable marketplace makes it unlikely that just one will be able to span the whole ecosystem. Brands need to understand the benefits of using each solution on a case-by-case basis to maximise the output from their addressable media strategies.

Hawk’s ability to unify brands’ approach to cross-channel targeting will only strengthen further with the adoption of LiveRamp’s IdentityLink (IDL) solution and other similar technologies, which will enable brands to leverage their own first party data and reach their audiences across all addressable channels without the need for any identifiers.

A few thoughts on how you feel today’s marketers and advertisers need to rethink their plans to achieve more ROI.

Changes in consumer trends can be gradual, stemming from a growing comfort with new technology.  But they can also be rapid shifts catalysed by environmental events, with the last year proving how fast and dramatic these swings can be – and how hard they are for marketers to predict in order to switch up their business strategy. What is clear however is that to survive as an industry that respects the growing demands of consumer trends, marketers can no longer think about channels in isolation. Both the strategy and technology need to be thought out with an understanding of a user’s actions over any given time period, how they behave across their devices, how they’re willing to interact with media within each channel, etc. The number of accessible data points to leverage is growing, and are increasingly contextually based. A tech stack that is able to make sense of this behaviour and helps power an efficient strategy that satisfies the standards of both consumers and brands is more important than ever in today’s marketing landscape.

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Headquartered in Paris and with offices across Europe and in the US, Hawk Platform (formerly known as TabMo) is a proprietary platform that enables advertisers to execute multi-channel strategies across mobile, audio, digital out-of-home (DOOH) and connected TV (CTV).

Built for mobile, Hawk enables bespoke end-to-end strategies for each advertiser and campaign using four key components – Data, Location, Channel and Creative – ensuring that the most relevant users are reached in the most appropriate locations with the most engaging formats regardless of the media they are consuming.  This allows Hawk to create strategies that transcend formerly siloed media environments and drive greater efficiencies in the process. Hawk can also attribute the effectiveness of these strategies; its In-Store Impact product tracks footfall uplift to stores while its in-built brand survey tool shows the impact of advertising campaigns.

Kayode Ijaola is head of platform sales at mobile-first advertising company, Hawk Platform (formerly known as TabMo).  He joined from programmatic media operator MiQ where, as group trader manager, he managed the team responsible for the UK’s largest agency holding groups. Prior to that he was responsible for the delivery and performance of programmatic campaigns for clients at digital accelerator Beamly; previously he held a trading role at digital media marketplace, The Exchange Lab.

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Connected TV advertisingConsumer TrendsCTVdigital marketingDOOHIdentity ResolutioninterviewsOmnichannel Campaignsprivacy standardsTabMoTarget Audience