June 25, 2015
OpenX Intern Series: Insight From the Next Generation
By Bob Hancock, Director, Talent Acquisition
At OpenX, we believe an internship program is more than just an opportunity to build your resume – an internship at OpenX is the opportunity to build long-term relationships, garner new skills from hands-on projects and participate in an all-inclusive workplace where each person has the ability to directly impact the business.
From Pasadena to London to New York to Menlo Park, you won’t find any member of our intern team sitting in a corner doing maintenance work – you’ll find them deep in a fascinating project alongside industry experts helping to build the next generation of OpenX.
Our goal is for each OpenX intern to build lasting relationships that will lead to full-time employment to those who ‘knock it out of the park’.
Over the next few months, the OpenX blog will feature insights into the OpenX internship program directly from the source — the OpenX interns. Exploring their decision behind choosing OpenX, getting an insider’s perspective on problem solving in the ad world and uncovering how to survive and succeed at an Ad Tech Company are just a few examples of what you can expect from the intern team this summer, as they share their uncensored experiences with the world.
Check out the first of OpenX’s “Insight from the Next Generation” series post below:
From Creative Writing to Ad Tech:
Why I Chose OpenX for My Summer Internship
By Harrison Brunelli, Intern, Business Development
As a student majoring in History with a background in creative writing, many people are confused when I tell them that I am an intern on the business development team at an advertising technology company. Although ad tech is a relatively obscure industry to undergrads, and OpenX might not be as commonly known as some tech giants like Facebook or Google, OpenX provided me with the perfect internship opportunity. What ultimately drove me to choose OpenX? My connection to the company’s fundamental statement of purpose: “We exist to help publishers build their businesses by monetizing great content.”
As a Southern California native and someone drawn to the problem-solving ethos that defines much of the technology industry, I was interested in finding a tech company in the LA-area that I could contribute to over the summer. The first question was how I could add value to a tech company. I don’t consider myself a technical person and I certainly don’t have coding or engineering chops. After speaking with individuals working in tech, I quickly realized that the skills that defined a good business development associate were all areas where I thrived: strong communication skills, ability to build relationships, thinking creatively and strategically, and a knack for problem solving.
The more difficult question was figuring out what type of technology company I wanted to work for. I had to determine what kinds of problems I cared most about solving. When I heard about the work OpenX was doing to revolutionize digital advertising, I quickly identified with the fundamental purpose of the company. But how could someone with a background in creative writing and the liberal arts contribute to a business like OpenX? I have a fundamental belief that creative content is essential for any culture to thrive. Great content can come in the form of intellectual dialogue, artistic expression, pure entertainment, and much more. I realized I could use this point of view, in addition to my skillset, to work with the business development team in their efforts to build relationships with publishers and hold meaningful conversations with them about how OpenX can help them build their businesses around great content.
In the digital era, the Internet has become the primary platform for content creators to access their audiences. The internet allows content creators to reach a more broad and diverse audience than they ever could in print and television; however, this transition has made it more difficult for content creators to monetize their content in the same ways that were available in traditional media. I was acutely aware of this challenge because I grew up immersed in print media – learning to read the sports page in first grade, thanks to my Dad’s job in the industry. I knew that for good content to survive and thrive in the digital age a new monetization model had to be developed. I wasn’t aware of a solution until I learned about what OpenX was doing with real-time bidding.
Learning about about OpenX’s capability to allow demand partners to bid on an impression-by-impression basis, driving up revenue for publishers, made such an impact, that I knew I had found a company solving problems that I was passionate about. Conversations with enthusiastic employees actively involved in carrying out this mission only reinforced my confidence that interning at OpenX was the right decision. OpenX’s approach to programmatic advertising is an approach that allows publishers to continue to produce great content in the digital era, and for me that is a problem worth solving.