Juice jumps into the native game

Company CEO Neil Sweeney on its partnership with Twitter's MoPub, and why it makes sense for his team to get into the native space.

Toronto-based mobile technology company Juice Mobile has partnered with Twitter’s MoPub mobile ad exchange to provide programmatic native ads on the mobile programmatic marketplace.

Neil Sweeney, president and CEO at Juice Mobile says that his company has wrestled with the idea of offering native ads for some time. He adds Juice has been able to do so from a technical standpoint but struggled with how it could be offered as part of a fuller mobile campaign.

Juice’s first foray into native advertising got started when it was approached by MoPub, which needed a beta partner as it prepared to launch native as a format available in its exchange. Sweeney says Juice has had a relationship with MoPub since launching Swarm last year, providing the exchange side to the DSP. By doing the same thing with native ads, Sweeney says Juice can now have the scale it needs, both in terms of impressions and the number of publishers it can work with.

“The addition of native advertising really is a reflection on what is happening on mobile,” Sweeney says. The release announcing the partnership cited recent numbers from IPG Media Labs showing that mobile users spend 53% more time looking at native ads than standard text or display ads. “The traditional ad is great, but I think you’d be crazy to think it’s going to be the base level of every mobile plan in five years. A good mobile campaign is one that has multiple layers, and native is an increasingly important layer to have.”

The native ads are automatically customized to fit within the environment of each individual page, avoiding the need for individual ads for each use. The process of bidding on impressions is also automated.

Sweeney says the company’s expansion of what can be done through Swarm is meant to be complementary to its core mobile buying platform, Nectar, to offer a full view of the mobile programmatic space. Whereas Swarm is the company’s DSP – providing real-time bidding on mobile ad inventory through exchanges like MoPub – Nectar is Juice’s own programmatic buying platform, which focuses on providing guaranteed premium inventory with dynamic pricing. Juice also has Gauge, a platform that leverages beacon technology to allow for proximity marketing, which was purchased in January.

Sites including  Reddit, Ask.fm and Tango will have inventory available through Juice’s mobile-focused DSP Swarm for the new partnership in Canada.

An earlier version of this story incorrectly listed ESPN and The Score as one of the apps that will be serving in-app native ads in North America. Neither ESPN or The Score has any affiliation with the deal in Canada. Media in Canada regrets the error.