Blinkx has rebranded to RhythmOne (1R) to provide a unified front for the advertising stack it has pulled together to start selling cross-channel, premium media to advertisers.
The move is the latest step in the company’s ongoing push to evolve from video search pioneer to media player that has seen it make seven ad tech buys since 2004. While the aggressive plan swelled Blinkx’s own and third-party media footprint in the period, it also left it with a fragmented offering that was difficult for its direct and programmatic teams to sell.
The case of Blinkx sellers meeting advertisers and agencies to sell one product only to be asked questions about a fellow service they knew little about had become more commonplace. Confusion had become rife despite all the work happening behind the scenes to pull platforms such as video supply side platform (SSP) AdKarma and advertising platform Grab Media together.
Work is still underway as shown by the recent acquisition of the AllMedia network and Zenovia Digital Exchange licensing agreement to provide brand-safe environments. However, Blinkx believes it has the key parts of the stack streamlined through 1R to start selling its ability to deliver cross-screen, quality ads at scale, spanning rich media, display, social and native formats.
Donald Hamilton, senior vice president of Blinkx, said it is now ready to “really flex our muscle” in developing “safe, credible” content for advertisers. It chimes with the wider rhetoric from content properties like Yahoo, Google and Facebook where the focus is on trying to prove they now sell audiences instead of clicks.
“The audience now becomes important again,” said Hamilton. “In a wider marketing scale, I think our whole commercial value is about to go full circle where we forgot the consumer and started to look at our financial goals. Now we’ve put consumers back in the centre of the picture and we’re trying to build from [them] again.”
The move comes at a challenging time for ad tech players, rapidly trying to adapt their offerings to the growth of mobile and more recently video. In terms of video and unique views, Blinkx ranks at 85.1 million, higher than Yahoo, Vevo and Vimeo with only Google, Facebook and AOL ahead of it, according to ComScore.
Spun out of tech business Autonomy in the UK, Blinkx made its early fortune in the video search market before moving to the US.