How InfoSum is responding to major changes in the data space

Richard Knott, general manager ANZ, at InfoSum

“There’s no point in doing deals with a bunch of disconnected partners”

Announcing its launch into the Australian and New Zealand markets in April last year, data collaboration platform InfoSum has it the ground running. With partnership announcements with FlyBuys and in 2023, the company is forging ahead with its goal to help brands complete end-to-end protection of their customer data using Data Clean Room technology.

Mediaweek spoke with Richard Knott, general manager ANZ at InfoSum to find out more.

First of all, for those who may not be across InfoSum’s work or for those considering working with the team, what is the elevator pitch for the product?

“There are three main benefits that people unlock when they work with InfoSum. The first one is what we call privacy by default, which is that you’re not moving your data anymore, you’re not sharing your data with somebody else. It’s staying within your own architecture, so no one has access to your data. 

“The second is that there’s a dirty secret, if you like, within first-party data collaboration – it’s a clunky experience that it can take hours, if not days to get match rate results, which eliminates that ability to plan. Whereas with InfoSum, it’s all done in seconds. You can drag and drop and get an answer within seconds as to what the match rate is, and what sort of information you can draw out. 

“The third one is that we unlock that multi-party collaboration solution. Some parties talk about being able to do multi-party, but ours is a real multi-party collaboration, where you can drag in three, five, seven different datasets together at the same time and get results within seconds.”

It’s been a bit over 12 months since the company expanded to Australia and New Zealand. What has the last year been like?

“It’s been an interesting journey, and it has started off very much around education. In this market, sometimes Australia is ahead in things, sometimes it’s on par, and sometimes a little bit behind the rest of the world. One of the things that was definitely a little bit behind was the data, clean room, and data collaboration space. There’s a lot of education around what’s available now, versus what was the legacy ways of doing things. That was sort of the first half. 

“Then we had all of the data breaches with Optus and Medibank, and then we had the recommendations for the Privacy Act changes dropped. That’s when things started to really get traction, the market started to move along. 

“Before that, it had just been cookies that had been deprecated – and then that got delayed, and it got delayed again. I think a lot of people thought that they would look at it tomorrow, or next week, but then with the Privacy Act and data breaches, things changed quite significantly. Trying to keep a lid on the demand now is quite difficult.”

That’s a lot of change! How is the business responding to these changes?

“That shift in attitude has meant for us that people are beginning to really respond to our message, which is that you shouldn’t be sharing data anymore, and you shouldn’t be moving data around anymore. You don’t technically need to do it anymore, there are new technologies like ours that are available. 

“We were born out of a GDPR environment, so we’re already compliant with what the recommendations are within the Privacy Act. For us, it’s not a lot of technical changes, it’s more about just evangelising and spruiking the way that we do things that fit with this need that’s become so apparent.”

This year saw InfoSum announce data clean room partnerships with Flybuys and Can you tell me a bit about how they came to be, and what the benefits are of partnering with those brands?

“News Corp is a global partner of ours, we have a really good relationship with them across the US and the UK. That’s where it initiated. News Corp is always looking to be at the forefront of any developments in media, but also in data and anything that it can do to bring its advertisers the best possible solution. 

“With Flybuys, what’s really exciting is actually unlocking new potentials. That’s where data clean rooms really come into their own, not just the audience match capability, but to unlock collaboration with multiple parties. Being able to bring data solutions like FlyBuys into a collaboration with someone like News Corp means a brand can a three-way collaboration across all of that – you can have transactional data, media data, and the brand’s own customer data. That is far superior to the legacy solutions of just a simple audience match.”

Where will the InfoSum team be focussing its attention over the next 12 months?

“With a product like InfoSum, we’ve got lots of interest from lots of areas, but there’s no point in doing deals with a bunch of disconnected partners who have no requirement to collaborate with each other. They won’t get any value from the platform. So what we need to build out is these nodes of networks of people that are connected – News Corp, and all the News Corp family, and then the brands that they work with from an advertising perspective, and then those advertisers working with particular data vendors that they work with. It’s always got to be built out in this interconnected manner. 

“Building out in a large interconnected manner, people can really leverage that second-party data solution that is the key focus. We’re not getting distracted with a big-name brand here that’s interested, and then another big-name brand over there that’s interested, who that may not have any kind of interconnectivity.”

See Also: Lauren Wetzel: How InfoSum is putting people in control of their first-party data

Top Image: Richard Knott

To Top