When’s the last time you actually clicked on an ad in a video online? Maybe never? Video ads are just plain annoying pop-ups, and they typically have nothing to do with the actual video–most of the time. Very few video ads actually seem interesting, and the ones that do are typically just eye candy. But what if the video ad was actually related to the video and presented what you were interested in? Maybe then, video ads could actually become something we’d want to see and click on? Here’s to not cringing at the next video and to watching enticing relatable ads… Coull to the rescue!
Tech Cocktail: What is Coull?
Coull: “Coull (@Coull) is a self-serve video advertising platform that helps you generate revenue by integrating clickable affiliate links within video content.
It’s video advertising. But, not as you know it. No irritating interruptions. No frustrating delays. It’s just a natural next step from video content that consumers actively want to take. Call it the Coull Connection: Consumer > Content > Commerce.
As a Coull publisher, you can monetize your website without compromising your content. As a Coull advertiser, you now have a powerful commercial way of capitalizing on video engagement.
Coull’s unique technology is built on understanding how people really want to interact with video – online and on the move. Coull lets your content take the lead. In just a few minutes, you can add relevant and elegant calls-to-action that work on whatever device people choose. The advertiser sets the value, the consumer clicks, and the publisher gets paid.
Consumer, meet content. Content, meet commerce. Come, meet Coull!”
Tech Cocktail: Who does Coull target?
Coull: “We are a network that provides a technology for promoting advertisers' videos/products via overlayed product links. On the other side of our business, we make partnerships with content and mobile publishers that promote the monetized video content.”
Tech Cocktail: What do you enjoy most about working at Coull?
Coull (Michael Cole – Senior Marketing Manager, San Francisco): “I really enjoy forming innovative partnerships with tech companies that add new opportunities on both sides that didn't exist before.”
Tech Cocktail: Who is Coull’s greatest competitor, and how do you differentiate yourself?
Coull: “We don't have any direct competition. We fill a role between the large affiliate networks that connect advertisers and publishers, but don't offer strong video ads.
Unlike all of the other video networks, we focus on cost-per-action direct response video advertising, rather than requiring them to throw advertising money in the hopes for results.”
Tech Cocktail: What is the biggest advantage and disadvantage of starting up in your city?
Coull: “Our company is located in Bristol, UK, so we have communication delays (9 AM in SF is 5 PM in UK) between the UK and US. Fortunately, the US branch of operations keeps the entrepreneurial spirit and doesn't rely on top-down directives to get work done. On the US side, our headquarters is in Santa Barbara county, but we have employees working remotely in San Diego and San Francisco, which is a huge advantage that lets us reach a huge amount of varied companies and meet them in-person.”
Tech Cocktail: What’s one quirky fact about you, your team, or your office culture?
Coull: “Half of our US branch works remotely, so almost all of our communication is via Google Chat!”
Tech Cocktail: Describe a challenging moment or a crucial decision for Coull. How did you deal with it, and what did you learn from it?
Coull: “It's challenging to figure out what will be the final form of your company that really starts generating revenue. We're still in this process, and we deal with it by focusing on what is successfully working, while not closing our doors to other ideas.
The lesson to be learned is that your company has to be both flexible and focused. You need to find the healthy medium, as an excess in either direction will be bad for your startup.”