|Company:||AVD Digital Media|
Andrew Ballen first arrived in China in 2001 after dropping out of Duke law school “on a whim”. He swiftly became China’s first American host/producer of the nation’s most popular bilingual travel show Getaway which was aired on CCTV, Dragon TV and Travel Channel. Then his company BallenWest hosted the Government of Jamaica and Puma AG events during 2008 Beijing Summer Olympics before he founded AVD Digital Media, a digital innovation hub specialising in interactive video solutions that seek to generate client and audience ROI.
AVD’s clients include Nike, LVMH Group, LeEco, Mindshare, Kraft Foods, Youku and many others. Ballen leads a team of technologists who monetise digital content across all devices and platforms, and seek to create stronger connections between clients and their customers.
In 2015, AVD Digital Media became the exclusive interactive video service provider for Hunan Mango TV, China’s second-most-watched channel, second only to CCTV-1. The firm provides interactive solutions for their premium shows and achieves a disruptive engagement rate of 181 per cent for brands like Minute Maid, Yili and GM. In 2016, Ballen also helped devise Le Cloud’s video-as-a-service go-to-market strategy.
Ballen continues to fight against what he terms the entrenched forces of inefficiency in Chinese media. He believes that programmatic purchasing via inflated CPM counts is annoying to audiences and extremely wasteful to brand clients who are ultimately looking for economic performance.