Opera Mediaworks Innovation Lab

Sofia | Aug 28, 2020

Periodic Table of Innovations

Voice Recognition

First launched in the fall of 2013 with two signature national brands —JetBlue and Toys”R”Us— this breakthrough ad unit engages the user in conversation using voice and natural language. Great way to communicate brand personality and maximize true interactivity.

  • How it works:
  • 1. Tap-to-expand unit starts a conversation with the user
  • 2. Follows a customized dialogue flow chart (multiple languages available)
  • 3. Leads to brand message and call to action

RM Selfie

About one million selfies are taken each day; this unit uses those first-person photos to personalize the user’s mobile ad experience. The user can upload an existing picture or take a new one, which is then integrated into the ad to create a unique portrait — perfect for social sharing. They can also draw, apply filters, and insert picture-in-picture, along with many other fun formats.

Gyroscope Control

Viewed within the banner or expanded, the experience of a gyroscope-controlled ad is both fluid and fully immersive. Designed to view panoramic or 360-degree images, such as the interior of a car, the user rotates their mobile device, which simulates the turning of the head. This unit has high interaction rates and is effective at driving brand awareness and loyalty.


Beacons are low-energy Bluetooth devices that allow for extremely accurate, customizable and scalable user location tracking and targeting. Opera Mediaworks partners with the world’s leading beacon technology platforms to supercharge our advertisers’ mobile media campaigns. Whether you are looking to target users based on their in-depth location habits and history, message users on-location (like sending a coupon ad when they are in-store), or measure location attribution and ROI to close the loop, beacons + Opera Mediaworks is the future of location-based big data.

Emotional Targeting

You can serve the right ad, to the right person, in the right place — but if it’s not at the right time, the message can be lost. Emotional targeting determines which physiological and emotional state the user is in at that moment: Are they in “lean forward” mode, running errands and prime for a direct, location-based offer? Or at home and in “lean back” mode, ready to watch (and engage in) a :30 video ad. Are they angry, excited, happy or anxious? All of these emotions can be identified via location, time and social data. We determine the state they are in to serve the appropriate ad type.

Zero Party Data

When you work with tens of billions of impressions, your own data can be a valuable source of information and market intelligence. Our team of data scientists constantly scour data from our global ad serving ecosystem to identify and analyze trends, yielding valuable insights into audience behaviors. That deep understanding of how audiences interact with ad content empowers optimization tools that maximize the performance of current and future campaigns.  

DVR Integration

Digital Video Recorder (DVR) technology may have made things difficult for TV advertisers, but in mobile it’s an opportunity. Mobile ads can prompt the user to add a particular show to their calendar as a reminder to watch it, but DVR integration means they can “tap-to-DVR” to deep link to the cable provider’s app (DirectTV, Dish, Time Warner, Cox) and set it to automatically record the show.

Digital Wallet

Coupons. Loyalty cards. Tickets. The pieces of paper and cards that used to make wallets so thick they couldn't fit in people’s pockets anymore — can (and should) be a thing of the past. Digital wallet will allow advertisers to disseminate all of these paperless deals, offers, memberships, etc. via standard and rich media creative, so the user can tap to save those branded items directly into their Passbook.

Interactive Video

There is interactive video, with the usual button overlays — and then there’s Opera Interactive Video 2.0. Interactive video 2.0 allows advertisers to overlay custom CTAs within a video, which launch overlays of content right in the video. Once the overlay is closed, the user’s video continues automatically.

  • M-commerce
  • “Touch to buy” an item in the video
  • Direct customers to the nearest store
  • Browse through product line
  • Personalization
  • Flexible hot spots for custom interactivity
  • In-video choices, such as changing the color of the car
  • Embed picture from phone’s camera roll into video ad
  • Social
  • Share during video play, not after
  • Live Twitter feeds


The apps on a person’s phone say more about them than the contents of their wallet — it’s like their digital DNA. It is one of the newest and strongest mobile behavioral targeting methods in the market. You simply give us a list of apps that you want to target, or in some cases just one app, and we only serve your ads to people with those apps.

*Filtering supports inclusion of ad-free apps, to define and reach new audiences.

Advanced Location Targeting

Mobile’s #1 advantage over desktop is location — but advanced location is more than simple geography. Among the innovations in location targeting:

  • Dynamic weather trigger
  • Banner pulls in current temperature and encourages interaction
  • Dynamic creative based on weather in the region
  • Tapping launches animated overlay to draw in user to experience
  • Watch video, share on Facebook/Twitter or go to mobile site
  • Locate
  • Dynamically generated banner with nearest address or distance or store
  • Does not require GPS access prompt
  • Navigate
  • Direct customer to a physical location
  • Compass in the banner pushes direct action
  • Ideal for retail outlets and new store openings

Audience Management

The Audience Management Platform is a how Opera focuses data around its users. With a combination of zero, 1st and 3rd party data, this autonomic computing system intelligently builds up a data cloud for audience management. Users are classified based on taxonomies, IAB categories, location, DMA, age, gender, behavioral patterns, among other criteria. This allows advertisers to hone in on a more granular level and reach an audience most receptive to their message.

Native Ads

We build ads around brand content and user choice, deeply integrating the visual design and experience with the publisher. Deepen influence on your target customer with high share of voice and seamless blend with editorial content. Studies have shown far less “ad blindness” with native ads that lead to higher CTRs and stronger impact.


Head of Innovation

Orr Orenstein is the leader of the newly minted Opera Mediaworks Innovation Lab, a team of mobile advertising technology experts that work to identify how consumers will be interacting with their mobile devices in the future -- and find ways for brand to participate in that experience.

Orr has a long record of demonstrated technical aptitude and enterprise expertise, with more than 25 years of tech and mobile experience. Before his current role, Orr was the Chief Technical Officer of Mobile Theory, the premium mobile ad network that Opera Mediaworks acquired in early 2012. There he oversaw the strategic direction of internal company technology for all departments, including product management, product development, architecture and infrastructure, operations, and R&D.;

Prior to Mobile Theory, Orr served as Vice President of Mobile at Photobucket where he was responsible for developing and executing a multi-pronged strategy to benefit business development, product management, and overall monetization objectives. He has also held several product management and engineering roles at technology giants like Vodafone, IBM, VeriSign, Oracle, Sun Microsystems, and Netscape.

As a passionate advocate for all sides of the mobile ecosystem, Orr is a regular speaker at industry conferences including CTIA, 3GSM/Mobile World Congress, MobileBeat, AppNation, WIP, and Open Mobile Summit. He holds a degree in Engineering from the University of Manitoba and presently resides in San Francisco.


Director of Demand Solutions and Innovation

With an extensive background in software engineering and product development, Deepankar (Deep) Katyal is well-versed in both the technical and business sides of the industry’s infrastructure.

As Opera Mediaworks’ Director of Demand Solutions and Innovation, Deep has experience working with cross-functional teams, managing a product line from start to finish. This includes architecting product solutions for both business and technical sides, justifying new product development investments, determining and documenting new product requirements, developing sales forecasts and product pricing, and launching new products to the marketplace.

Before joining Opera Mediaworks, Deep worked in product development at Nuance Communications where he was responsible for the launch, market adaptation and business development for Nuance Voice Ads. He also designed ad creation tools to help ad agencies and networks create voice ads. Prior to that, he worked as a software engineer at Nuance, where he designed and developed a number of programs including a Swype-based input method for MeeGo/Android OS and a Kinect Input for the same method on Windows tablet.

Deep holds a degree in Engineering from Visvesvaraya Technological University in India and is certified by Nuance University in Product / Project Development and management. He currently resides in San Francisco.


Director of Innovation, Product Strategy and Marketing

Throughout his career, Andrew Dubatowka has built a deep understanding of mobile marketing and has proven expertise in strategy and activation. As Opera Mediaworks’ Director of Innovation, Product Strategy and Marketing, Andrew oversees the product innovation, product strategy, sales support and new product merchandising and marketing for all departments.

Before joining Opera Mediaworks, Andrew worked as the VP and Director of Strategy and Media for Ansible where he oversaw account planning and client services for brands like Microsoft, Intel, Johnson &Johnson; Pharma, Benadryl, Zyrtec, Neutrogena, Splenda, Kia and Acuvue. Andrew has also served as startup advisor for Thalamus, Inc. and held digital marketing roles for entertainment and non-profit brands, most notably as part of the Sony Pictures Worldwide Digital Marketing Strategy Group.

Andrew holds a Masters of Entertainment Management, Marketing, Digital Media and Communications from USC’s Annenberg School of Communication. He lives in San Francisco.


Technical Product Manager, Innovation Engineer

With over a decade of experience in software engineering, web services and systems architecture, Matthew Kesack has built applications that have helped companies transition to the next level. As the Technical Product Manager at Opera Mediaworks, Matt is responsible for the development and deployment of new mobile advertising products, rapidly prototyping innovative solutions to industry challenges, and supporting internal teams with technological expertise.

Before joining Opera Mediaworks, Matt worked as an engineer at Beatport where he wrote and maintained application code in the company’s retail, supply chain and acquisitions and retention divisions. Prior to that he served as an engineer at Yahoo, Associated Content, Photobucket and Naviance where he worked on web sites and web-based applications, custom APIs and native mobile applications. While attending university he held an internship with NASA's Swift Mission.

Matthew holds a B.S. degree in Computer Science and is a Zend Certified Engineer in PHP. He currently resides in the San Francisco Bay Area.


Mobile Advertising Evangelist

With four years working in the digital advertising industry and two years working in the print industry, Kyle Beeco is an experienced marketer who has a deep knowledge on all things related to digital advertising. As Opera Mediaworks’ Chicago-based Mobile Advertising Evangelist, Kyle will educate the internal sales teams and the clients they represent on the products and services that Opera Mediaworks has to offer, and help them keep up to date on recent innovations in the marketplace.

Before joining Opera Mediaworks, Kyle served as the Product Marketing Director for PointRoll, where he was responsible for product training (internal and external), digital strategy consultation, competitive analysis, product positioning, sales pitch development, face-to-face sales and product feedback loop. Prior to this, he has worked with a variety of agencies and clients including Chrysler, Ford, GM, Anheuser-Busch, Bank of America, Conagra, McDonald’s, State Farm, CNN, Cisco, and Orbitz.


Mobile Advertising Evangelist

Jeremy is a pioneer in mobile marketing, having led cutting edge programs for iconic brands such as Mountain Dew, Starbucks, Tropicana and many others. At Opera, he is responsible for managing the firm’s agency product and industry education initiatives, working closely with the Innovation team to marry technology and data with proprietary delivery platforms to solve complex advertiser challenges.

Jeremy honed his expertise in creative, targeting and mobile measurement capabilities during his 5+ year tenure with OMD Worldwide, where he most recently served as one of the agency’s U.S. mobile leaders. At OMD, he spent significant time advising on branding, direct response and sales-focused media campaigns for many of the world’s most recognizable brands.

Among his other responsibilities, Jeremy served as Supervisor of Digital Investment for Pepsi Beverages and managing U.S. planning and buying for a wide range of brands.


Senior Ad Tech Manager

With an analytical mind and a deep understanding of how to comprehend data across a broad set of initiatives, Salah has the expertise to provide analysis and insights that lead his team to tangible results. As Opera Mediaworks’ Senior Ad Tech Manager, Salah leverages digital data points to help drive business decisions and improve sales conversion, traffic, performance and strategy. As a liaison between product development and the operations teams, he is responsible for integrating new technical solutions into daily processes and workflows.

Before being named Senior Ad Tech Manager, Salah held the positions of Account Manager, Ad Ops Manager, and Senior Operations Analyst at Opera Mediworks.


Technical Product Manager, UK/EMEA

As Opera Mediawork’s Technical Product Manager, Chris designs and develops new mobile advertising solutions and products such as new targeting, data solutions, ad formats and operations tools. Chris also manages research and insight pieces whilst providing technical support to the rest of the team.

Before joining Opera Mediaworks, Chris served as a Developer and Tester at 4th Screen Advertising where he built RM mobile/tablet ads for premium brands such as Sony and Lexus, but using Javascript, CSS and HTML5. Prior to that, he served as a Pricing and Rates Analyst in the telecoms industry, where he designed and constructed calculators for determining rates and prices for a variety of products.

Chris is a certified Project Manager from Alexos Global.


Group Agency Director, UK/EMEA

With a background in both traditional and digital marketing platforms, Ben Dimond brings a comprehensive understanding to digital media strategy. As Opera Mediaworks’ Group Agency Director, Ben leads on innovation and strategy, driving new products and initiatives including App Detection, Breakout Formats, 3D Ads and Interactive Video. He also manages internal and external research projects to provide clients with insights into the opportunities of mobile as an advertising platform.

Previously, Ben served as the Group Agency Director at 4th Screen Advertising, which was acquired by Opera Mediaworks in early 2012. Prior to that, he spent several years working agency side in traditional media where he engaged with such major brands as Virgin Media and Renault.


Business Manager, Latin America

With extensive experience working in an entrepreneurial, digitally-focused environment, Gonzalo Borras has demonstrated an impressive ability to develop and execute business and content strategy.

As Opera Mediaworks’ Business Development Manager, based out of Buenos Aires, Gonzalo takes the lead on developing new business, product and content initiatives, assessing new markets, financial opportunities and the media landscape, analyzing business and audience opportunities, and developing and conducting competitive analysis.

Before joining Opera Mediaworks, Gonzalo has worked in various capacities at Hunt Mobile Ads (acquired by Opera Mediaworks in 2014), Ares Richmedia, Dtravelnetwork.com, Microsoft Advertising, Dream Ad, Terra Networks Argentina and IBM Global Services.


Ad Operations Manager

A team player with a meticulous attention to detail, Matt Tice understands how to implement, manage, and ensure ongoing campaign success. As Opera Mediaworks’ Advertising Operations Manager, Matt’s responsibilities include revenue yield management and monitoring campaign pacing and performance.

Before joining Opera Mediaworks, Matt served as the Senior Advertising Operator for SAY Media, where he led Ad Operations through the development of the company’s owned and controlled media portfolio. Prior to that, Matt held several sales positions with JamBase, where he developed major clients in top markets and increased revenue from existing clients.

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