Rich media ad network VideoEgg is recasting itself as Say Media after its purchase of blog platform Six Apart.
The absorption of Six Apart gives the company the added reach of the latter's Movable Type and TypePad blogging software. Say Media plans to use those ties with content creators to foster the growth of independent media properties it can package to advertisers.
"Why can't we put together a solution for a major brand that rivals what AOL or Yahoo would provide?" asked Troy Young, president of Say Media. "We have the scale, superior ad tech and access to content."
VideoEgg CEO Matt Sanchez will run Say Media. Six Apart CEO Chris Alden is leaving the company. Six Apart cofounder Ben Trott is staying with the firm, while cofounder Mena Trott will join Say Media's board. After the acquisition closes, Say Media will have 300 employees and a presence in 10 markets.
The acquisition and name change cap an evolution for VideoEgg, which began as a personal video-sharing service. It then morphed into an ad network specializing in cost-per-engagement video ads run in display units. Its main product is AdFrames, which shows snippets of advertiser videos in banners to entice users to click to view the the full clips.
Meanwhile, Six Apart had been trying to grow from a pure blogging platform into a broader media business, running custom campaigns for brands like Microsoft and GE. Young said Say Media would continue this approach, adding so-called conversational campaigns to its own engagement-based ad products. The combined company claims a reach of 345 million people globally.
"We want to understand and respond to what our customers are asking for," he said. "They're asking us about social, about content and how to get to influencers."
Say Media plans to rep up-and-coming content creators like Jeff Katz, publisher of GeekWeek.com, and Deborah Perry Piscione of women's site BettyConfidential.com. Say Media will use its ad network to distribute custom content created on behalf of brands and to aggregate audiences for its creator roster in a "hub-and-spoke model," Young said.
"We're building a modern media company," he added.
Say Media is one of several companies seeking to build the right digital model. Glam Media has built a large ad network of niche sites. Federated Media has a network of specialist venues and content creators that participate in marketing campaigns.
Say Media expects to lose some subscribers to the Six Apart blogging platform. Its main focus, Young said, is in those that hope to build media businesses, rather than regular people who write a blog for fun.
"The kinds of people we want to work with are emerging media personalities," he said.