By Adam R Jacobson
RBR + TVBR
Jonathan Lacoste has one clear vision for his Boston-based company’s signature calling card: a mobile interactive content platform.
“I want to replace every single mobile landing page in existence,” says Lacoste, the co-founder and president of 5 1/2-year-old digital firm Jebbit.
That may seem like a big task for Lacoste, an individual who at age 21 was named to Forbes’ 30 Under 30 list in January 2015.
But, he believes it’s quite simple and based on one fundamental shift in consumer behavior. “There are tactics that have migrated from the PC to mobile devices that have not been in sync with the consumer experience,” he says.
Radio stations can benefit, he says. Beasley Media Group, through its acquisition of pioneering client Greater Media, already is.
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The Jebbit platform enables marketers and digital sales teams to create branded, personalized mobile experiences to engage, profile, and convert any audience.
How can it help your radio stations drive revenue? By providing interactive mobile content solutions as part of your mobile digital offerings.
“We specialize in customized, personalized ads for marketing,” Lacoste says.
This should be enticing to radio’s C-Suite as it struggles to provide the same level of brand selectivity as Facebook or Google.
It’s also exciting because it largely eliminates the outmoded “click on the banner” direct response approach to internet advertising still seen across many a streaming audio platform.
“We hate banner advertising,” Lacoste notes. “It is just not consumer-friendly.”
How is Jebbit partnering with radio station clients?
“Our mission is mobile content creation and engaging a radio station’s audience with a personality,” he says.
As consumers passively listen to radio, the question becomes this: How can we activate or entice you to participate in some brand’s experience? How can radio put interesting and sponsored content in a Facebook newsfeed?
The answers to these questions first came to light with Greater Media’s former Boston cluster. Explaining how the stations used the platform, Lacoste says, “There are two sides to how it works with radio. First, we are creating the content that is designed to engage the audience to continue to grow a digital footprint and presence on mobile platforms. Second, we are taking mobile tech and white labeling it as an asset.”
The latter involves the use of that “stop and engage” content that can live everywhere, generating KPI (key performance indicators) and metrics that prove the platform drives sales and brand engagement.
DONUT BY DESIGN
In recognition of a national day of the doughnut, Jebbit created a “Which donut are you?” poll that drove mobile consumers to FindMyDonut.com, a temporary website that posted content to Facebook.
“The tech will show how a radio station can push this out,” Lacoste says. “They know they need a digital presence, right? The thing is, they don’t know what they should be doing on digital. The problem with radio is that there is an education challenge, with a lot of turnover. ”
With Lacoste’s help, he believes he has a tool that brings proof that digital spending has brought ROI. Now, radio can latch on and take advantage of it.
“We create and provide the tech, and we manage and operate it for the radio industry,” Lacoste says.
One recent campaign involved Modell’s Sporting Goods, a longtime Northeast sporting goods and athletic wear retailer.
As shown, at left, a survey was the crux of the effort — again, to spur interactivity with the individual with the smartphone.
“We believe we have a conduit for bringing sales to technology in the radio business,” Lacoste says. “In order to compete and be able to drive, digital should be considered as a platform for new revenue, and to win new national business.”
He continues, “For New York, Los Angeles and Chicago, market leaders will need new ways to win. This will come through digital solutions designed to compete with the Facebooks and Googles of the world.”
Yet, he reiterates how there is still a learning curve for much of the radio business.
“There are pockets of brilliance,” Lacoste says. “It takes a long time and it is expensive to ramp up, and that is why leveraging your digital partners to quickly bring your station up to speed is a route that a lot of ownership groups should take. The year 2017, for radio, really needs to be The Year of Mobile.”
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