Scott Portugal is an industry veteran of the ad technology space, bringing more than 15 years of experience working alongside the world’s leading publishers, ad agencies, and brands. He has held senior roles with several top companies in the programmatic advertising industry. Prior to starting Scott Portugal Consulting, Scott was GM, Publisher Platform of Yieldbot.
Scott Portugal has served as SVP, Programmatic & Strategic Alliances at PulsePoint, where he was responsible for managing global programmatic business and strategic partnerships, and Chief Revenue Officer of TRAFFIQ – the industry’s first programmatic direct platform. Previously, he has held roles as VP, Publisher Development at both Tacoda and AOL.
How did you get started? What inspired you to start this business?
I started this digital media consulting business after spending 15 years deep inside ad technology, helping publishers “see around the corner” to understand not just how to optimize their revenue today, but how to recognize coming trends and prepare for them.
How do you make money?
Scott Portugal Consulting works with clients on either an hourly basis or a per-project basis depending on their needs.
How long did it take for you to become profitable?
Scott Portugal Consulting has been profitable since day one, due to our ability to leverage outside technology platforms and build intelligent partnerships.
When you were starting out, was there ever a time you doubted it would work? If so, how did you handle that?
Of course there was. This is a crowded market and the value of an outside “technology expert” – especially when more and more publishers are trying to hire this expertise in-house – seemed like it might be a stretch. What made the biggest difference was the sheer amount of confusion I encountered when talking to potential clients. It seemed like even the in-house expertise wasn’t enough, so I felt like I could add real value.
How did you get your first customer?
Word of mouth – like most small businesses. The feedback I received encouraged me to continue to pursue this idea and leverage my network.
What is one marketing strategy (other than referrals) that you’re using that works really well to generate new business?
Thought leadership, via blogs, articles, and white papers is one area where you can find really good marketing ROI. People don’t just need help with meetings and understanding vendor offerings – they want an opinion, a point of view – something that speaks to a deep and robust understanding of the market. It is this expertise which helps us not just address today’s problems, but attack tomorrow’s opportunities.
What is the toughest decision you’ve had to make in the last few months?
Leaving Yieldbot to start this effort was a really tough call. It’s a great company with great people and will undoubtedly be incredibly successful – it was just time to go in a different direction.
What do you think it is that makes you successful?
Like most young entrepreneurs, my experience in the space (working for publishers, with publishers, running an ad agency, building platforms) combined with a passion for helping clients navigate the choppy waters of the marketing technology space is the key ingredient for success.
What has been your most satisfying moment in business?
Early in my career, I helped a small publisher in the financial vertical transition out of the military and into being a full time publisher by creating enough revenue to support his business full time.
What does the future hold for your business? What are you most excited about?
Ad technology market is always in flux – and today is no different. Ad blockers, mobile ad consumption, social media and the intersection of truly connected devices with the television, the car, and the cloud….brands and individuals are both closer together and farther apart than ever. The chance to help brands reach relevant users, publishers make money as the sands shift under their feet, and to help users find content via ads that is meaningful for them, it represents a really exciting time in advertising.