"It’s amazing how easily we’re able to adjust as new requirements become known. The Appronto team has been a great partner. Their understanding of our goals and use of Mendix’s application development platform make it easy for us to drive innovation."
About the case
ToMedia’s new digital advertising platform allows its digital networks, ToLocal and To20, to streamline processes around its digital and mobile display strategies. The innovative new platform was built by Appronto, using the Mendix development platform. Within 25 days, the new solution was released to market, acting as a hub between local publishers and advertisers.
The Netherlands now hosts hundreds of local digital news outlets that speak to highly unique regional audiences. And with the ongoing proliferation of these networks, ToMedia and its advertisers spend an increasing amount of time setting each advertising campaign. National brands, in particular, have found it time consuming to run large campaigns, with regional components, such as promoting a local store or branch.
ToMedia needed a new system to facilitate their networks’ digital and mobile advertising strategies. They wanted a solution that simplified the entire process and acted as a hub to connect independent digital news sites and advertisers. The solution needed to integrate with all back-end network management systems and invoicing tools. But they also expected the new solution to be user-friendly.
ToMedia needed a custom solution in order to aggregate all of these requirements into one unified platform. They partnered with Appronto, a consulting group that helps organizations create business applications, based on their success using the Mendix development platform to deliver complex solutions. During project scoping discussions, ToMedia also stressed the importance of system security, platform stability, and future flexibility.
The idea of an aggregated digital advertising network was new for their market, and they expected to adjust their solution often as they learned more about what advertisers and publishers wanted.
A team of 2 developers from Appronto built the digital advertising platform in 25 days. The new platform integrates with 10 media systems on the back-end so that publishers can access all campaign components, pricing, and payments. The platform also provides a uniform way to integrate with and expose campaign elements across 350 publishing sites (with more website integrations set for future application iterations).
In addition to aggregating all data, ToMedia’s new digital network provides a forum for auctioning advertisements within microseconds. As consumers access each relevant news site, the ad space is immediately available at auction and the platform selects the display banner or video that bids at the highest price. Finally, the new digital media platform automates all reporting, including daily income and monthly campaign analysis.
In the past, ToMedia experienced a variety of data errors on the administrative and reporting sides, which slowed operations and resulted in inaccurate reporting and payouts. With greater system automation, the team has been able to reduce their error rates and provide greater income transparency.
The team also has a more accurate view into their top advertisers and their average ad price across each region. Data can be dissected by any time period and across any set of publishers. Ultimately, advertisers now have a greater understanding of what’s working and how to adjust campaigns that may be underperforming.
With the initial project now completed, ToMedia is working on a second phase of the solution. The team continues to integrate with additional news sites, expecting to double its reach within the next six months.
ToMedia is comprised of multiple brands that focus on digital media strategies. To20 is the largest online advertising network to reach kids between the ages of 6 and 24 years in the Benelux. ToLocal is a digital sales organization for national advertisers, with a network of local digital websites and apps.