Category: Blog Posts

The New Possibilities of an ID-Redacted World


Change has come to the world of digital marketing measurement. With the redaction of DoubleClick (now Google Marketing Platform) IDs, the rollout of Google’s Ads Data Hub (ADH), and growing interest in data clean room solutions, marketers must “unlearn” what was possible in the past and become rapidly familiar with what is now possible in the ID-redacted world.

The introduction of GDPR and the general global trend toward digital privacy has pushed us into a new era in the digital media world—but it doesn’t appear as though some have accepted that reality just yet. It’s usually true of technological disruption that we first try to retrofit old paradigms onto new technology and miss the forest for the trees. Only later do we find that there has been a complete paradigm shift and new use-cases have emerged.

We at MightyHive are finding that ADH and other emerging technologies are facilitating new and interesting ways of interacting with customer data that were not previously possible. As part of our own process of discovery and experimentation, we are learning that we need to fundamentally change the way we and our clients use data as a tool and a value generator. This learning process involves moving away from trying to measure what we no longer can and focusing more and more on how to build new utility into consumer ad experiences via connected data sets.

A quick primer on Ads Data Hub

First, a bit of background on what ADH does: ADH is a “data clean room” solution that allows multiple parties to analyse the intersections among respective first-party data sets, but without revealing granular row-level, user-level, or log-level data.

At MightyHive, we’re discovering what’s possible first-hand; working with clients to generate very new and very exciting insights from multilateral data co-ops.

As an example, Brand A could upload transaction records tied to first-party cookies. ADH lets Brand A query the intersection between its own records and ad exposures recorded by Google, but not a user level. Instead, the finest granularity at which ADH reports is about 50 individuals, which for most scaled campaigns is more than sufficient for generating insights, provided the ADH user knows how to structure the uploaded data and develop queries.

Why Ads Data Hub solves more problems than it causes

Focusing only on user-level ID redaction is myopic. Because ADH is designed as a “Switzerland for data,” it solves multiple problems, which in turn creates new possibilities for marketers, platforms, partners, and publishers:

  • User privacy is protected. What comes out of ADH are aggregated data intersections. User-level data goes in, but it does not leave.
  • Intellectual property is protected. First-party data is extremely valuable. This has historically made data owners averse to letting data leave company walls. ADH solves for these commercial roadblocks by providing aggregate insights without allowing any row-level data to leave the hands of its respective owner.
  • ADH accommodates a multilateral set of participants and data sets. ADH is not just a Google <> advertiser or Google <> agency solution. Multiple parties can load data into ADH and analyse intersections and patterns. This essentially allows for the construction of user journeys (e.g., brand campaign → offline visit → conversion → customer loyalty) by analyzing blended data sets from multiple parties who have interacted with customers.
  • ADH is cloud-based. Being a cloud-based solution based in large part on Google BigQuery, ADH is extremely flexible, accessible, and scalable from a technical standpoint. It’s an easy, industry-standard environment for engineering, analytics, and data science teams to plug into.

Ads Data Hub is not just a Google <> advertiser or Google <> agency solution.

How to navigate an ID-redacted future

ADH and other emerging data clean room solutions present the advertising ecosystem with new environments in which to ask questions of data, in many cases where data sets have never been brought together before. At MightyHive, we’re seeing what’s possible first-hand; working with clients to generate very new and very exciting insights.

For example, a Consumer Packaged Goods (CPG) company (ACME Dish Soap) can partner with one of their top retail channel partners (Shop-Now Supermarkets) and understanding how media spend (collected via buying platforms and ad servers) is affecting brick and mortar store sales. A data clean room can serve as a scalable and flexible environment for ACME Dish Soap to get unprecedented insight not from outdated Shop-Now Supermarkets regional sales reports, but from actual Shop-Now Supermarkets customer data and the patterns that emerge when compared with Google advertising data.

In the right hands, the value of being able to connect marketing activity to a holistic universe of data sets and business outcomes far surpasses the past value of terabytes of user-level log files. Marketers, agencies, and partners just need to learn how to use the new tools they have at their disposal and adapt campaign, media, and brand strategy to new insights and principles.

The industry needs to do a lot of catching up. Marketers, agencies, and partners are going to need to become more familiar with the technical particulars of data joins and sophisticated database queries that can’t always rely on user-level IDs as a “crutch.”

Like any data-driven solution, “garbage in, garbage out” (GIGO) very much applies here. In order to get the full value of Ads Data Hub or other data clean rooms, many brands will finally need to adopt some sort of first-party universal customer identifier that makes data useful in a data clean room environment.

Lastly, when a solution like ADH can tie media exposures, owned interactions, and sales revenue together to create a more customer-centric and holistic view, the value of popular proxy metrics (which were already questionable) like reach or CTR are bound to decline rapidly, forcing many a campaign to be completely re-evaluated.

Let’s talk

If you have questions on Ads Data Hub, ID redactions, GDPR and digital privacy, or next-generation measurement and analytics, please reach out to us at We’re excited about these new possibilities and we think you should be too.

MightyHive Team Interview: Will Liu, Account Manager

will liu headshotThe MightyHive Team Interview is a rotating spotlight of MightyHive employees from across the organization, providing an insider’s look into what it’s really like to be a member of the MightyHive team. 

Today we’re talking to Will Liu, an Account Manager who is based out of our New York office. 

Q: What do you do at MightyHive?

I’m an account manager! Being an account manager can mean vastly different things at different companies. As an account manager at MightyHive, I own a book of business, and within that book of business, I manage client relationships, run digital advertising campaigns, act as a strategic advisor, and help troubleshoot any platform issues.

It’s really cool to work with brands that I see out in the world and get a deeper look into how their marketing teams operate!

Q: What excites you about working at MightyHive?

So many things that I had to break it out into categories: 

Investment in Professional Growth and Development
It’s a really conducive environment for learning. The company invests a lot in training, but it doesn’t just stop there. You get to pick and choose your own learning path and explore things that are interesting to you. For example, my manager knows I’ve been learning web development in my spare time, so he asked if I wanted to learn site-side analytics and join our analytics team. Another example is that my manager offers to buy us books of our choice if we think they’ll help with our personal growth, which I think is really awesome. One of the coolest things about MightyHive is the investment not just in your growth as an employee, but also in your personal growth overall.

interview learning photos

I am also learning a lot about business and marketing just from my everyday work. Within my book of business, I get the opportunity to work with companies of all types and sizes across different verticals. This gives me a more holistic view of the business and marketing landscape, and I think that’s very valuable for my future. 

An Amazing Culture
Everyone talks about the culture of their company, but MightyHive actually delivers on that promise. I love the people I work with, and company events are always something to look forward to. The Workplace Ops team really puts in a lot of effort to create opportunities for us to have fun and get to know each other!

We have great snacks and the weekly catered lunches are always fun team bonding time. Every Tuesday is Team Tuesday, where we have catered lunch and often times we invite speakers to give presentations on various topics. Some of the last few have been about organization, eating healthy, and desktop ergonomics. 

interview culture photos

A Fast-Growing Company With Advancement Opportunities
We’re growing super fast. The office has TRIPLED in size since I started. It’s really cool to see tangible growth and to know that I’m growing with the company.

Q: What’s your day-to-day like at MightyHive?

Here’s a typical day:


9:00 – 10:00 | Grab coffee, check dashboards, make my to-do list for the day, and respond to emails
10:00 – 11:00 | Team meeting
11:00 – 12:00 | Client call
12:00 – 1:00 | Catered Team Tuesday lunch
1:00 – 1:30 | Analytics team sync
1:30 – 3:30 | Building and optimizing campaigns, media planning, billing reconciliations, answering emails
SNACKTIME because I’m hungry and the kitchen is STOCKED!
3:30 – 4:00 | 1:1 with my manager
4:00 – 5:00 | Usually another client call, or time for catching up on miscellaneous work
5:00 – 5:30 | Last round of emails for the day and clearing up that to-do list

That’s just a very average day, but some other notable recurring events I look forward to on a weekly or monthly basis are: all-hands-meetings (more catered food!), MightyFridays (we rent out a venue and the whole company goes out for a happy hour), fitness events, and onsite massages!

Q: What advice do you have for candidates considering a role at MightyHive?

This advice is directed towards candidates coming directly out of school, since that was my path. Don’t be discouraged if you don’t know much about programmatic advertising. The truth is, no one right out of school knows anything about programmatic advertising, so MightyHive doesn’t expect you to be an expert.

That being said, you should do your research on the industry and learn what you can. If you’re reading this, you’re already on the right track! We’re looking for friendly people who are eager to learn, have a knack for solving problems, and enjoy helping others. If that sounds like you, just be yourself and I’m sure you’ll do great in your interviews! Best of luck.

Interested in a career at MightyHive? Check out our open roles here, and see what Will’s colleagues are saying about MightyHive on Glassdoor.  


Video: Belinda Smith of Electronic Arts Shares Her History of In-Housing, Recruiting Talent, and Instituting Change


Recently, MightyHive hosted its first In-House Alliance Dinner in San Francisco where the conversations centered around recruiting and building in-house programmatic teams. MightyHive President Americas, Emily Del Greco asked Electronic Arts’ Global Head of Media, Belinda Smith to share her experience as a change agent building teams at both AT&T and EA. Also in attendance at the dinner were senior marketers from Merck, Visa, Sprint, Electrolux, IHG, and others.

Belinda Smith, left, Global Head of Media, EA and Emily Del Greco, President of the Americas, MightyHive, speak at the inaugural MightyHive In-House Alliance Dinner in San Francisco.

“I feel like I have seen advertising from all sides… and at each junction I was so frustrated by people not willing to admit the failures of the ecosystem.”

– Belinda Smith

Ultimately, Smith changed the culture of the companies she worked for. To do this, she moved teams halfway across the county, launched robust talent recruitment programs, and successfully campaigned for millions of budgetary dollars. But perhaps the biggest challenge was finding ways to blend agency culture with the deeply-rooted brand values.

“If I think about what I want to accomplish in my career, what’s going to be worth it to me to not be at home playing with my kid…then I really want to change the industry.”

– Belinda Smith

During the interview, Smith confessed she missed the variety an agency affords, but showed no signs of wanting to return. At EA, Smith recognizes that she is in a place where she can make the most impact.

Smith and Del Greco spoke about building in-house teams in front of an audience at the MightyHive In-House Alliance Dinner.

“When you are at an agency… your client being happy is what is sustaining you. That creates an inherent conflict of interest when you have bad news to tell them…so for me, I am fulfilled by the fact that I am in a position to have the mandate to be audacious and to challenge what is going on and to think about how we do things differently.”

– Belinda Smith

Google Marketing Live: Takeaways from MightyHive Canada


The MightyHive team was thrilled to attend this year’s Google Marketing Live. It was an exciting event with some important announcements. We want to pass these on, as well as our thoughts regarding the highlights of this annual event.

What is Google Marketing Live?

Google hosts Google Marketing Live every year. Marketers attend to get industry updates, engage directly with product specialists and engineers, break out into industry-specific tracks (automotive, travel, telco, and retail), and do a bit of networking. The conference is also a great indicator of where Google is going next.

Themes Leading up to the Conference

Recently, a number of major changes have impacted the digital marketing industry. Privacy and regulations in the EU (GDPR), as well as the Consumer Privacy Act in California, are top of mind as marketers anxiously await the fate of third-party data and other privacy considerations. These changes, along with the likelihood that Amazon has begun siphoning Google’s search revenue, Safari’s Intelligent Tracking Prevention (ITP) prompting all major browsers to adopt stricter privacy controls that limit cookie use, and the prevention of YouTube third-party tracking in the EU, have negatively impacted Google’s growth rate. The outcome has caused them to focus on a variety of new developments that they expect will pay dividends in the long run.

At Google Marketing Live in 2018, Google touted a narrative around their ability to predict intent, as opposed to simply respond to it. It was the culmination of some very interesting changes over the previous year and a response to fast-rising competitors Facebook and Amazon. Google, a business built upon the foundation of search and last touch attribution, has since transformed into one that centers around data-driven/multi-touch attribution and around valuing the upper funnel. With search budgets nearly saturated in many markets, there is room for growth in other channels. Google recognizes that advertisers need to focus on getting ahead of the consumer – a value proposition that Facebook and Amazon are not yet equipped to deliver against nearly as well.

Source: Google

Key Themes at GML 2019

2019’s keynote built upon the themes from 2018. Google began by announcing new products and opportunities that Google is “uniquely positioned” to deliver against (attendees will have heard that phrase a lot, and for good reason). Google’s cross-device, unified tech stack provides the best understanding of advertising investment (Facebook and Amazon don’t compete holistically in this space yet).

In fact, if you want the critically important fusion of your marketing data with your business data, you’ll need to do your analysis within Google’s stack (take advantage of Ads Data Hub, a Google product that was built with privacy regulation in mind to analyze your media at a granular level). Amazon and Microsoft have long been the dominant players in the data storage space, but with exclusive data analysis opportunities available through Google, marketers can equip themselves with data capabilities to edge out the competition. This is also a critical move for Google as they look to diversify their revenue streams outside of advertising.

Predicting Intent is Google’s Advantage

The ability to predict intent that Google brings to bear is unique from Amazon and Facebook – the suggestion is that your search and web behaviour are still the most powerful predictors of intent. Google will deliver on this predictive intent with new ad formats called Discovery Ads that serve based on said intent, but without having to initiate a search. Competitor Amazon has an immense amount of e-commerce data, but lacks key points in the customer journey that Google has visibility into via platforms like Gmail, YouTube, Google Maps, Google Search, and Google’s dominant position on buy-side and sell-side adtech and inventory. While Facebook has immense amounts of declared data, as well as some behavioural data, in theory Google should still have the advantage. Google has recognized that the social platforms are doing something well to capture time and attention though, through their social feeds. That’s why their newly announced Discover Ads will be capable of delivering ads without the need for a search query, directly in your brand new (quite smart and useful) Google feed.

topic feed

Source: Google

Google’s Response to E-Commerce 

And shopping… Shop direct from the Google SERPs, from Google Images, from YouTube and more with embedded products. Either checkout online or pick up in your local store (coming soon), Google Shopping is already live in some markets and coming to the US soon. Will this new multichannel shopping experience across Google gain enough traction with brands? There will be some barriers to entry and Google is recommending onboarding partners to help brands get there quicker.

Going Local

Finally, there was a lot of buzz around announcements for Local Campaigns. Considering the vast amount of location data collected by Google, its scale and accuracy, privacy-sensitive methodology, the ability to attribute search and display to in-store visits, data analysis capabilities in Google Analytics 360… There are a lot of reasons to be excited about what Google is doing in the location data space. While there are a number of alternative solutions for local attribution and targeting, Google solutions provide exclusive and significant value.

local ad

Source: Google

Programmatic Linear TV?

Last but most definitely not least is the exciting announcement on programmatic linear TV. At GML 2018, there was a lot of buzz around the prospect of buying linear TV through programmatic pipes, and we were promised a Google solution through the DSP. For Google, building the pipes to transact is easy, but on-boarding publisher inventory and attribution is more difficult.

This year, Google shared examples of programmatic linear TV buying across major US networks, marking a substantial step forward. By this fall, Google will be rolling out a section in DV360 dedicated to TV. This should also enable simplified buying of Connected TV (CTV), which is not linear TV but still served on the big screen.

All of the early movers and shakers in programmatic TV here in Canada and globally have talked about the day that linear TV buying and attribution become part of analytics dashboards and digital workflow tools that we currently use. We are still in the nascent stage, but we are keeping an eye on how this progresses.

While functionality is coming to DV360 soon, linear programmatic may be a bit further off in Canada than in the US. That said, there should still be a number of CTV options available in Canada through DV360, so you can still reach your audience programmatically in their living room.

Please check out the embedded links above or the official Google Ads Announcements page or the Google Marketing Platform Blog for more information on each topic.

As always, please feel free to reach out to any of your MightyHive Canada team members at

Case Study: MightyHive Helps Introduce Mercari to America

“MightyHive’s data-driven approach and expertise of the digital marketing ecosystem aligned perfectly with our expectations and goals. They were instrumental in helping us brainstorm, plan and execute an effective brand awareness campaign. We look forward to collaborating with them on our future campaigns.”

-Scott Levitan, CMO, Mercari

Scaling Success: Mercari Targets International Markets

Mercari, known as “The Selling App,” is a hugely popular e-commerce app where users can buy and sell unused goods through a community platform. Mercari is extremely successful in its native Japan with a significant user base. The brand wanted to parlay its success in Japan to new markets and set its sights on expansion into the US.

Mercari app Screenshot

In order to successfully introduce the Mercari brand to the US, the team at Mercari needed a US partner with cross-cultural experience. MightyHive has experience successfully launching brand awareness and audience acquisition campaigns across the globe. Given this experience, Mercari selected MightyHive as its partner to introduce the brand to American audiences.

With a goal of maximizing reach and gathering information about potential audiences, Mercari and MightyHive leveraged Google Marketing Platform and Facebook to launch Mercari’s US “Cheers” digital campaign.

Audience Discovery and Insights

As a newcomer to the US market, Mercari’s primary goal was to identify and understand potential audiences for its brand. Using a robust combination of Google and Facebook, MightyHive was able to maximize reach while gathering valuable data about Mercari’s US audiences. Using this data, MightyHive was able to draw insights about Mercari’s target audience and optimize creative and messaging to align with audience preferences.

After the six-week test flight, Mercari saw accelerated new user growth and had reached 47% of its US target market.

47 Percent of US Target Audience Reached

On-Demand Reporting

With Google Analytics 360, MightyHive was able to provide Mercari with granular data about its audience to use for better insights. MightyHive aggregated Mercari’s reporting into comprehensive daily reports through Google Data Studio. Mercari was easily able to track campaign performance and trends with transparency.

MightyHive’s data-driven approach opened the door for Mercari to enter a new market with the confidence that they were maximizing reach across the right audiences. Mercari can build on the insights collected in the “Cheers” campaign to continue to successfully grow its brand in the US.

The team of digital experts at MightyHive can help you reach the audiences most aligned with your brand. We focus on unifying media and analytics to build digital campaign strategies that are informed by data. Please contact us to learn more.


MightyHive Helps Introduce
Mercari to America

(click to read the full case study)

MightyHive Has Merged with S4 Capital

To our clients and partners:

MightyHive is proud to join forces with S4 Capital. The merger enables MightyHive to meet rapidly growing demand from clients and expand the opportunities that MightyHive can help our clients unlock. We are particularly excited about the impact this news will have on the global brands and agencies we serve and are pleased to communicate the facts below.

What is S4 Capital?

The mission of S4 Capital is to create a new era, new age digital solution embracing data, content, and technology in an always-on environment for global, multi-national, regional and local clients, and for millennial-driven digital brands. Earlier this year, S4 Capital merged with MediaMonks, a global creative production firm that has produced award-winning creative for clients like Audi, Google, Netflix, and Adidas. The MightyHive is the first entry S4 Capital has made into digital media.

Why Have MightyHive and S4 Capital Merged?

MightyHive is aligned with S4 Capital’s mission to create a new-era marketing services firm that focuses on digital content, digital media, and first-party data. As advertising, content, and commerce continue to converge and data plays a central role, our clients will be able to do more through an integrated offering created by the companies that are a part of S4 Capital. The integrated solution will also be amplified by the strength of our partnerships with Google, Amazon, and Facebook. These technology partnerships set the operational heartbeat of the MightyHive business. Additionally, the merger allows us to scale our people development to ensure that MightyHive talent continues to lead the market.

What is the Structure of the Deal?

As a result of the merger, MightyHive is a wholly owned subsidiary of S4 Capital. Pete Kim, MightyHive CEO and Co-Founder, and Christopher S. Martin, MightyHive COO and Co-Founder, have joined the S4 Capital board of directors and are also remaining in their roles running the day-to-day operations of MightyHive.

What are the Benefits of the Merger for Clients and Partners?

There is a fundamental shift in media today. Consumers can now access content anywhere, at any time, and with greater personalization than ever before. Rising consumer expectations for relevance, coupled with the complexity of the ad tech ecosystem, have left marketers underserved.

MightyHive recognized this change in 2012. But our crucial insight was that while the market produced a proliferation of technologies, the highly skilled talent required to master this new space was lacking.

S4 Capital brings together the pioneers of the new era. Both MightyHive and MediaMonks are regarded as leaders in their respective fields: MediaMonks is one of the most awarded creative production companies in the world; MightyHive is a recognized leader in programmatic digital media buying. With our complementary capabilities, MediaMonks and MightyHive will explore integrated solutions that enhance our ability to service clients in the new media landscape.

As MightyHive develops a combined digital content and media offering with S4 Capital, interested clients will have unique opportunities to help shape these solutions. Otherwise, MightyHive will conduct business as usual, focusing on delivering superior service and solutions.

A Closing Thought

We are excited about the opportunities ahead, but for now, you can expect business as usual. MightyHive is still on the same mission of digital marketing transformation we’ve been on since our founding. The company’s leadership will remain involved in the day-to-day operations of the company, and our services and approach are not changing.

As we mark this milestone in our shared history, please know the team at MightyHive is proud to join forces with S4 Capital and MediaMonks because of one reason — it allows us to serve you, our clients and partners, in a way that was impossible in the past and will drive the future. We extend a heartfelt thank you to our clients, partners, investors, and our advisors, Petsky Prunier Securities who served as exclusive financial advisor and Cooley LLP who served as legal advisor to MightyHive on the transaction.

Lastly, we want to thank our people for being with us on this journey. MightyHive would not be where it is today without you.

Kind Regards,

Pete Kim
Co-founder and CEO


Chris Martin
Co-founder and COO


Lexi Viripaeff
Co-founder and CTO


About S4 Capital plc (Founded 2018)

S4 Capital was created with the objective of building a digital, multi-national business in the advertising and marketing services sector. S4 Capital’s mission is to create a new era / new age digital solution embracing data, content, and technology in an always-on environment for global, multi-national, regional and local clients, and for millennial-driven digital brands.

About MightyHive (Founded 2012)

MightyHive is a new breed of media consultancy that partners with global brands and agencies seeking transformative marketing results in a time of significant disruption and opportunity. Recognized as a global leader in advanced marketing and advertising technologies, MightyHive provides consulting and services in the areas of media operations and training, data strategy, and analytics. The company is headquartered in San Francisco, with offices in New York, London, Toronto, Singapore, Stockholm, and Sydney.

MediaMonks (Founded 2001)

MediaMonks is an award-winning international digital creative content and production company. MediaMonks partners with clients across industries and markets to craft amazing work for leading businesses and brands with integrated production capabilities that span the entire creative spectrum, covering anything you could possibly want from a production partner, and probably more.

From creative campaigns and content to bespoke development and design, MediaMonks works above the line and below the fold at the intersection of creativity and technology. MediaMonks operates across teams, time zones and technologies with a team of 900+ Monks. Their work is recognized by advertising and craft awards around the world, with 110 Cannes Lions and 200+ FWAs to date.

Founded in 2001 and rooted in digital, MediaMonks has offices in San Francisco, Los Angeles, New York, Mexico City, Buenos Aires, São Paulo, London, Amsterdam, Stockholm, Dubai, Singapore, and Shanghai.