Jerrid Grimm, a former vice president at Newad, has partnered with Tiam Korki, co-founder of Gauge Mobile (acquired by Juice Mobile) to launch a Vancouver-based ad platform called Pressboard.
The ad platform, which Grimm describes as "forward-thinking," marries editorial content with suitable brand partners.
“Pressboard’s mission is to help brands find the right stories for their audience and reciprocally help influential storytellers looking for relevant brand partnerships," he explains. "We are a bit like the 'Cupids of Content.'"
The platform will serve as a marketplace where brands looking for content to sponsor and publishers looking for sponsorship revenue meet, collaborate and transact. Grimm offers two examples:
- A beer brand that wants to be associated with music can use Pressboard to find a publisher creating music content and sponsor a set of stories, or request a story on that topic be created.
- An automotive company that wants to be associated with family travel can use Pressboard to find a publisher creating roadtrip or camping articles and sponsor a set of stories, or, again, request a story on that topic be created.
"I’ve had the opportunity to work with some of Canada’s top brands and online publishers in my career and have seen a huge need from both parties to bring efficiencies to the content creation, distribution and sponsorship process," Grimm added.
The goal of Pressboard, he says, is to bring scale to the brand sponsorship space.
"While we are seeing a huge demand for content marketing and sponsorship of editorial, the current process is time consuming and inefficient for all parties involved," Grimm notes.
The Canadian startup believes technology can alleviate this friction. That's where Korki’s experience comes into play.
“I built my first ad server 17 years ago and the banner ad format hasn’t really changed much since," he says. "The way people read stories online is significantly different today. We discover our favourite stories through Facebook and Twitter and we view them on a screen that fits in the palm of our hand."
Currently in private beta, Pressboard will launch at the end of April.