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Under the Hood with Lotame’s Chris Hogg

So much of the focus in online advertising is on the tools and technology platforms that drive clicks, views and conversions. But people are at the core of the industry — and people who are equal parts strategic, passionate and inquisitive form the core of the Lotame team.

In Under the Hood, we’ll find out more about the people that make Lotame’s platform (and thus, Lotame’s clients) successful. This month’s interview is with Christopher Hogg, Lotame’s European Managing Director.

Chris joined the company two and a half years ago, and launched Lotame’s European office. Here, he sheds light on the challenges and opportunities around data for companies in Europe, as well as how his unique experience as a both an employee and a former client help him better serve Lotame’s customers.

How are companies in the EMEA region currently using data? What makes this a promising market?

There’s a rich heritage in Europe of large to medium publishing groups that have lots of multi-site assets and really rich data. Obviously, it’s also a complex market because of EU privacy laws, but we have our customers adopt best practices to support those guidelines.

The European market is a very savvy market, but it’s also a first-time DMP market. The industry for data management really has expanded in the last two years on both the supply and demand side. There’s a lot of players, from large to medium-sized players all going after similar advertising budgets.

Businesses here quickly adopt new technologies and new products, but they also push the boundaries. Our customers challenge us and this pushes us to improve our products.

What’s one of the biggest challenges that European marketers and publishers face when it comes to data?

At the moment, the supply and demand sides are isolated in how they use data. But moving forward, I think we’ll see more publishers and agencies working closer together to improve the performance for brands across their inventory.

We have seen our publisher clients forging 2nd-party data sharing agreements over the past year. More recently, the emergence of publisher alliances such as 1XL, Pangaea and Symmachia will continue the growth of this trend. With supply and demand working together it will yield some exciting results!

So what about your role as Managing Director – what does it involve?

I oversee operations across Europe, the Middle East and North Africa. I’m focused on keeping our customers happy, and making sure they’re getting everything they need from our team. My role also encompasses sales, development and bringing in new business for our DMP and first-party data management products.

What do you love most about your job?

Being the first on the ground in Europe, expanding the team/client base into new verticals and markets has been a career defining experience.

I love the variation of the work, getting out into the market, talking to customers and prospects and helping them drive value from data and their data assets.

What’s unique in my position is that I was once also a Lotame customer, working for the France telecom group. I’ve sat on both sides as a Lotame customer and employee. I’ve experienced firsthand how data can create efficiencies and the power it has to drive revenue.

A year from now, what do you hope to accomplish in this market?

Our focus is to ensure clients really use data to drive value. We have customers in different stages of that evolution who are in the process of fully developing and delivering on their data strategy. We’re putting a lot of effort into supporting them and sharing best practices in a consultative way.

Aside from that, I’d really like to see our demand side business grow building on the early success we have experienced in working with some of the largest brands and agencies in Europe.