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50 Best Workplaces of the Year 2021

Stirista: The First Company Built from the Ground Up to Deliver Real-Time Identity Solutions


Founded as an ambitious project from an apartment in 2009, San Antonio, Texas-based Stirista is an industry leader in data-driven SaaS and identity marketing solutions. The company’s solutions help marketers generate revenue with identity-level data. Data is a key component in driving sales everywhere, and Stirista has access to best-fit accounts from over 26 million businesses. Stirista creates custom audience segments and executes campaigns via digital, email, and social channels.

Stirista is helping marketers generate revenue with identity-level data. The company knows that one-size-fits-all solutions and decayed data don’t work, so they built a modular and real-time OMNA Identity Graph from the ground up to arm marketers with marketing data that actually works.

We recently interviewed Ajay Gupta, CEO of Stirista, to know more about the company’s journey and its ace identity marketing solutions. Read on for the excerpts from the interview.

Q. Could you tell us about your journey so far?

Stirista started as a company of two in my apartment in 2009, to offer complete data profiles that were updated in real-time and could be utilized across all the available media channels to eliminate ad waste and gain better results. The company has grown to about 100 employees now. Recently we added a media buying platform, AdStir, which allows marketers to buy media at cost across major CTV platforms with full reporting. AdStir is a first-in-its-class and it has its own DSP. It can match your input and output data, and provide identity marketing.

Q. What is Identity Marketing?

Stirista delivers micro-targeted multichannel marketing solutions that are fueled by super smart data. Identity marketing recognizes a specific customer, or business wherever and however they interact. OMNA identity graph is real-time updated identity data. Our identity graph updates in seconds, which helps you reach audiences quicker. You get better results and better attributions.

Q. How can Stirista help with acquiring new customers and retaining old ones?

Stirista focuses on success and customer service. Using our data to more accurately reach prospects, who are ready to make a purchase, we are lowering the funnel and saving our clients time and money by giving them precise data. We enable marketers to nurture prospects and reach them with the right offer as soon as they are ready to buy. The data customers spend years amassing, is far more than fuel for marketing campaigns and decision making. It’s untapped revenue. Data that you may think is unremarkable could fetch big numbers on data marketplaces. Our all-star team of data strategists knows what buyers are looking for, and more importantly, they can help you identify top buyers and take your existing data assets to market.

Q. What has helped the company distinguish itself and its services from others? What makes Stirista unique? 

Our product offerings make Stirista unique. AdStir is a self-service media buying platform that provides advertisers with access to premium inventory across CTV, OTT, and mobile. Stirista has also recently launched OMNA identity graph, which allows marketers to reach over 100 million households and more than 1 billion marketers already have snapshots of your customers and prospects’ identities. Our strategists can help you build those into a full-fledged identity graph. From applying insider techniques to boost your match rates to uncovering new ways to inject data into your decision making, our team can improve every aspect of your data methodologies on connected devices so they can ensure their message hits the right targets.

Q. Could you tell us a bit about the company’s work culture?

Employees are what make Stirista the growing company that it is. Our senior leadership develops playbooks for their teams to ensure a consistent, positive Stirista client experience for every account, but also on topics that go beyond the day-to-day functions of a department: how to cater your communication style to who you’re speaking to, how to manage up, how to deal with conflict, how to say sorry in a business setting. Also, I host culture events that foster interdepartmental relationships. From employee team building to training and planning, Stirista offers more than just a “job.”

Q. How important are partnerships to Stirista?

Partnerships allow us to bring holistic best-in-class solutions to clients for all their digital efforts across all channels. By partnering with like-minded companies, we create complete solutions that enable us to offer our clients exactly what they need in any instance and our first- and second-party data and identity information does the same for our partners.

Q. How did you help out since the breakout of the COVID-19 pandemic? How have you innovated to adapt?

I am proud of the fact that we not just retained employees during the pandemic, our hiring has also increased for remote employees on the west and east coast. We grew by over 30% and helped everyone adapt to the pandemic working culture. We launched the Marketing Stir podcast, as a way to replace conferences and summits. We were one of the first companies to go virtual and replace in person meetings.

Q. Do you have any new services ready to be launched?

We just launched our Crosswalk platform. Crosswalk is our geo-attribution technology, which enables you to attribute in-store traffic and purchases back to digital campaigns. Crosswalk utilizes billions of signals including date/time, lat/long locations, and device-level information such as IP and IFA to create behavioral intent segmentation. With Crosswalk, Stirista reduces the guesswork and lost marketing attribution with a specialized intelligence solution that gives marketers post-campaign footfall traffic insights, competitive conquesting, and audience expansion.

Q. What does the future hold for your company and its customers?

Our B2B self-service platform, called Demand Exchange, is a single solution to onboard and enrich CRM data, build addressable audience segments with our data and activate against them using B2B display, CTV, or email. Our customers are able to create a campaign, leverage the data and scale their own campaigns with data that’s updated in real time.

Ajay Gupta, CEO

Ajay Gupta has served as CEO of Stirista since founding the company in 2009 at age 26. He has overseen rapid year-to-year financial growth of the data-driven marketing services company, as it has progressed from 2 employees working out of an apartment, to a team of nearly 100, spanning three continents. In 2020, the company raised $13M in growth equity financing from Boston-based Wavecrest Growth Partners.

“From applying insider techniques to boost your match rates to uncovering new ways to inject data into your decision making, our team can improve every aspect of your data methodologies on connected devices so they can ensure their message hits the right targets.”