Ecommerce Media Plans Lure Ari Paparo To Bazaarvoice

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Ari PaparoWith ecommerce retailers infusing their publishing plans with ad placements and sponsored mini-sites, Ari Paparo said yesterday that he’s excited by the possibilities ahead in his new role as SVP of Media Products at Austin, Texas-based social software company, Bazaarvoice (see release).

Paparo has taken the deep dive on the ad tech side previously with real-time ad platform AppNexus, Nielsen and Google’s DoubleClick juggernaut.

He thinks its still early days for the ecommerce and media combo and told AdExchanger,It's not exclusively limited to ecommerce publishers putting IAB ads on their site. There are opportunities across the board for ecommerce merchants to become closer to their customers and their brands that they represent through the use of data, authentic content from reviews and social, and the use of advertising as a medium to connect those things.”

AdExchanger discussed the new role and industry trends with Paparo.

AdExchanger: What are the responsibilities of the new SVP of Media Products role? How is this different from the challenges you’ve experienced in past roles?

ARI PAPARO: I’ll be defining and executing the media strategy for the company, and working directly with [Bazaarvoice] CEO Stephen Collins. This is interesting for me because several times I’ve had the opportunity to move a market - from the work I did with VAST and video or with rich media and DoubleClick. Ecommerce is similarly ready for substantial changes to the way it does business in the media sphere. Bazaarvoice is uniquely suited to take advantage of that.

Will Bazaarvoice exploit digital channels beyond PC-based display?

Longboard Media (acquired by Bazaarvoice in November) already has a strong presence in mobile. Video is a huge opportunity for retailers and for brands, too. If you think about the great assets manufacturers have that are in video form, and then how you get that in front of the customer as a way to influence their purchasing behavior, that's going to be a huge opportunity.

Finally, Bazaarvoice's strength is in “social” - it's social to its core. That's the offering that's been in the market for years. That's going to be a big part of the opportunity here.

Are you going to be building out a team?

We have scale through our Longboard acquisition. We expect to do substantial hiring in the New York area as a hub for our media business. We're very excited about growth in New York.

Finally, do you think programmatic media is affecting or will affect Bazaarvoice?

To the extent that Bazaarvoice is going to participate in media markets, programmatic is obviously core to the future of that. There are opportunities to sell media programmatically, which are fairly straightforward. But also using the data that our clients are capable of collecting, there are opportunities to help with customer acquisition, with retargeting, with other opportunities on behalf of the client. We're not clear exactly what products we're going to build or roll out in what sequence, but we see just enormous opportunities there.

Follow Ari Paparo (@aripap), Bazaarvoice (@bazaarvoice) and AdExchanger (@adexchanger) on Twitter.

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