Amit Avner is the CEO of Taykey, a company that uses real time trends to improve advertising performance. Amit has extensive experience building software and we recently spoke with him about Taykey’s offering.
The Makegood: Amit, you have always had a passion for technology, having started programming at the age of ten. What is it about technology that is so attractive to you?
AA: I’ve always been intrigued with building things, it could be planning cities in SimCity or building structures with Lego blocks, that’s just a part of my DNA. I’m passionate about understanding how things work, making them bigger and better, and using that knowledge for creations of my own. I had many opportunities to do this during my time with the Israeli Defense Forces, but if I told you the specifics I would have to kill you.
The Makegood: Taykey uses real time trends to improve advertising performance. Can you tell us a little about the process of how this is accomplished?
AA: Taykey monitors over 40,000 public sources online, including sites like Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, The Huffington Post and Pinterest, and our patented technology is able to identify and fully understand what topics are most interesting to audiences in real-time. Instead of relying solely on what brands want or think audiences should care about, we optimize placements leveraging what they actually care about in the moment. It’s truly remarkable how unpredictable, momentary trends can positively impact ROI. As a media buying platform, we currently execute campaigns on Facebook, Google Display Network and YouTube with Google Search and Twitter coming soon!
The Makegood: In 2011, Taykey completed a $9MM Series B round of funding with the intentions of increasing staff in the NYC and Tel Aviv offices and continue to work on product. Can you tell us about plans for 2012?
AA: Growth in 2012 is going to be very aggressive. We’ve already outgrown our office in Tel Aviv, with over 30 employees focused entirely on R&D, and will be moving into our new space soon. In New York, we’ve brought on John Schneider, formally of Federated Media & Yahoo, to head up our sales efforts and continue building out the team. Taykey has 7 people here on 24th and Park and we will likely triple that number by the end of the year. In addition to that, we have a fantastic team of investors and a growing list of advisors, most recently Kevin Rose, founder of Digg and CEO of Milk.
The Makegood: Can you tell us about some initiates that Taykey is working on now?
AA: In addition to the growing list of Fortune 500 advertisers we work with, right this second I am most excited about a pretty cool targeting breakthrough for advertisers. Our team in Israel has figured out how to reach audiences based on real-time activities like listening, watching, reading, etc. For instance, if you broadcast the fact that you are watching “Modern Family” though an open API, Taykey can now target on behalf of brands based on that information. Breakthroughs like this make us even more eager to work with our partners on discovering new applications for our technology; we’ve only just begun.
The Makegood: Thanks, Amit.