The startup community can be incredibly valuable for marketers, agencies, publishers and technology companies. These young innovators can deliver solutions and solve problems that have vexed the data-driven ecosystem for years. But finding these powerful solutions among the thousands of possible choices can be daunting, and incredibly time-consuming.

At DMA, we’re taking the work out of the startup search, and bringing impressive new companies and solutions directly to you. Here are six startups that DMA is watching – all of whom are competing in the HOT ZONE at &THEN in Los Angeles.

1. Rockerbox

A top challenge for marketers is finding customers when they are off your brand’s website. By utilizing “recency marketing” to determine patterns in existing customer browsing history, Rockerbox more effectively identifies – and then reaches – your potential customers. Rockerbox’s Co-Founder & CEO, Ron Jacobson, shares that the company’s technology has driven up results while simultaneously taking down the cost-per-acquisition to as much as 60% on prospecting campaigns for brands including Hanes, CitiBank and Sonos.

2. Linkstorm

Today’s consumers are suffering from “banner blindness,” overwhelmed by marketing and advertising offers across the digital ecosystem. “Even if the message does entice the person to click through, they simply come to a home page or a landing page, and may have to hunt through 10 more pages of a website to find whatever they really want,” says Linkstorm Founder & CEO David Sidman. Linkstorm cuts through that mess, overlaying an expandable navigation menu onto display advertising and allowing the consumer to go directly where they need on a brand’s website. In addition to delivering more detailed customer intent data to the brand, Linkstorm ads boost performance up to 17x in click-throughs and conversions.

3. Parsec

“The way that brands buy digital media is completely broken,” says Marc Guldimann, Founder & CEO of Parsec, and he lays the blame on the impression. He argues that the impression metric incentivizes brands to clog pages with ads, lowering both brand visibility and consumer experience (and driving installs for ad blockers). Instead, Parsec uses time-based metrics, removing risk from media buys by lowering the cost of advertising consumers spend less time consuming. “A meta-study of the 15 brand lift surveys that Parsec has run found that each incremental second spent with politely interruptive ads delivered 14% lift in brand metrics,” adds Guldimann.

4. Eventable

As brands look to capture consumer interest and engagement across a range of channels, the digital calendar presents the opportunity to drive a personal connection. “Our customers describe Eventable as the ‘last mile’ of their marketing strategy: timely calendar reminders that drive immediate action and higher conversions,” Eventable Co-Founder & President/COO Akash Malhotra tells us. The average consumer checks their calendar 10 times per day, which is a key reason Eventable customers see 100x more clicks compared to other marketing channels.

5. Cordial

Lifecycle marketing and personalization can be difficult and costly for many brands to manage at scale and in real time. Cordial’s platform, powered by machine learning, “vastly streamlines the production side of email, content personalization, audience analysis and self-optimized testing,” says Cordial’s Founder and Chief Strategy & Operations Officer David Baker. Cordial’s platform is delivering results as well, including 50-75% increases in customer engagement, 300% increase in conversion and a 75% reduction in campaign production time.

6. AdMass

Despite having a technical capability to target individuals, marketers can be limited by the ability to create content at scale and serving it to the correct audience. “At AdMass, we combine an effective channel, advocate marketing, with machine learning to produce actionable insights that can be applied to paid social and digital strategies,” AdMass CEO Mike Sorgenfrei shares. This connects advocates currently producing content with the brands relevant to them and their audiences, which AdMass says drives 3x more produced content and 5x more consumer engagement.


These six companies and nine others will face off in DMA’s HOT ZONE at &THEN, October 16-18 in Los Angeles. They’ll be competing for your votes, and five finalists will advance to pitch live on stage in front of judges from LiveRamp, Facebook, Oracle Data Cloud and Active International. If you want a piece of their solutions, you’ll have to be at &THEN!