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Episode 2 –
How to Deal With Data Privacy Regulations When Operating Globally With Todd Rose of InMobi

RESOURCES   ❯   The Marketing Rapport Podcast

Episode Summary

If we look at the modern-day business world, the more demanding the role is, the fancier and shorter the title is. But it’s different in the case of Todd Rose of InMobi. Therefore, we asked him to join us on this episode of The Marketing Rapport and tell us more about his job title: SVP of Global Business Development and GM of Identity and Addressability.

Todd shares his teams’ areas of focus and the challenges they tackle. He also discusses the past, present, and future of InMobi. Finally, he lists questions every company eager to operate internationally must ask to meet different data privacy-related legal requirements.


Todd Rose
  • Name: Todd Rose
  • What he does: Todd is the SVP of Global Business Development and GM of Identity and Addressability at InMobi, a global business that provides an end-to-end mobile advertising platform.
  • Company: InMobi
  • Noteworthy: Todd has spent the past two decades in various business development roles. Before joining InMobi, he spent nine years in location intelligence, targeting, foot traffic attribution, insights, and analytics solutions. NinthDecimal, AT&T Interactive, and McKinsey & Co are the companies he worked at, to name a few.
  • Where to find Todd: LinkedIn

Key Insights

  • Business development means very different things in different companies. Given that the SVP of Global Business Development is one of Todd’s hats at InMobi, we asked him to clarify what it involves and how their day-to-day looks. ”The way I think about business development here is largely focused on working with partners in one capacity or another. So within that team, we’ve got a supply-focused team bringing publishers or what we call supply partners onto our exchange. […] I’ve got teams focused on gaming and non-gaming throughout the globe. I also have a team focused on demand partnerships, so working with the big DSPs and platforms that control advertiser budgets to help execute their campaigns across our exchange.”
  • Like every data-driven company, we focus heavily on privacy regulations. Moreover, it’s a priority as InMobi operates in over a hundred countries where laws differ. ”But, we’ve got a very talented and overworked legal team that keeps track of all those legislations. So any product release we put out needs to go through a privacy committee review and demonstrate how those solutions comply with the regulations in the applicable countries.”
  • When a job is demanding, finding time for yourself is mandatory. Otherwise, you risk burnout. But often, that’s easier said than done, and we need additional encouragement. So here it is: follow Todd’s example. His role is complex and covers an enormous scope of responsibilities. But what he finds essential is free time he can spend with his loved ones and play different sports to deliver even better professional results when expected. ”A balance between work and personal life is essential and even more important in this new era where our personal and professional lives seem to blend somewhat seamlessly.”

Episode Highlights

Introducing InMobi

”InMobi started about 15 years ago as a traditional mobile advertising network. […] A lot of people know InMobi as an in-app SSP mobile ad exchange. What folks may not realize is that we’ve built end-to-end capabilities on top of that. […]

Most companies in the ad tech arena fall into one of two broad buckets. They’re either a consumer-facing property first that has subsequently built enterprise ad tech capabilities to build a robust walled garden. We know the walled gardens — the TikToks, Twitters, and Facebooks of the world.

The other large category is pure ad tech vendors focused on helping third parties monetize their inventory or execute campaigns, DSPs, SSPs, and alike. We are that rare breed that started purely as a third-party ad tech solution provider and evolved in the other direction to build a set of consumer-facing properties and surfaces.”

Todd’s GM of Identity and Addressability Role in a Nutshell

”We’re all familiar with the challenges the industry is facing with the deprecation of mobile advertising IDs and third-party cookies in the mobile web environment. And so, our mandate is how do we help ensure the addressability of media in a post-cookie world?

So when you ask what the problems we’re working on are. The first thing to clarify is identity is one subset of a larger problem. It’s a problem of addressability. […] I don’t see a one-size-fits-all solution or panacea for identity and addressability.

We’re working on an almost hierarchical portfolio-based approach to addressability that blends one-to-one identity with cohort-based solutions and contextual solutions to solve the problem of addressability for our clients.”

How Does a Company Like InMobi Manage to Serve Large Markets, While Dealing With Regulations and Unique Consumer Preferences?

”It’s a matrix problem. A lot of companies are dealing with legislation in one country, and that’s challenging enough as is. Now multiply that matrix by a hundred-plus countries.

Still, there are a couple of key aspects that make that scalable and tenable. The first insight is that when you look at privacy legislation, there’s a discrete set of six or seven essential questions that characterize privacy policy in any given nation in which you operate:

  • What constitutes the personal information of users?
  • What consent must be procured from users who opt in or opt out to collect that personal information, and how must that consent be collected?
  • What rights do users have to obtain their data, request a modification, or request to be forgotten or delete that information?
  • What can you do with that data, and how do you communicate those intended use cases to users?
  • What rights do companies have to share and/or sell the personal information collected from users and make that available to third parties?
  • How much user data can be stored, and what restrictions exist on where it can be stored and processed?
  • What rules apply with respect to protected classes of users?

Top Quotes

[02:56] ”I believe the best business development folks have a solid foundation in product because they understand what’s feasible, and they’re less inclined to over-promise and under-deliver.”

[12:05] ​​”A lot of publishers want the transparency, control, and new neutrality inherent in a self-media ad solution for their advertising, rather than relying on third party black box solutions.”

[20:06] ”What I’m impressed by with InMobi is that everyone is encouraged to think big, and it’s a company that does not shy away from making big bets on the future and putting real wood behind the fire.”