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SAUSALITO, Calif. — Alternative cab service Lyft has a lot of goals to accomplish when it places ads, as it throws its messaging onto audio ads, video ads, display ads, and social media ads.

The company wants to be efficient with its ad spend, making programmatic advertising a good choice at times. But Lyft is also looking to make inroads in the challenge of educating consumers about the nature of its service.

Kira Wampler, Lyft’s newly hired chief marketing officer, is looking to achieve both of these goals.

“I should be using a blend of art and science,” Wampler said at VentureBeat’s Mobile Summit conference today.

Wampler’s company is among many that have embraced programmatic — or algorithmically driven — advertising alongside more traditional methods. Wampler is determined to use more and more types of media, like mobile video ads, making Lyft more ambitious than the average company.

“One of the things that’s really lovely about a mix of audio, video, and display marketing and social marketing is we can actually feel like we’re everywhere as a brand, and with a very efficient buy,” Wampler said.

It’s understandable that Lyft is more active and cunning in its marketing now that it has a major competitor in well-funded Uber, among others. Not that Wampler is discouraged by that fact — she believes there’s certainly room for more than one company in a market that’s as large as transportation.

Crowd Companies’ Jeremiah Owyang asked Wampler about other forms of media, wondering if, for instance, one day the company would be open to displaying Lyft ads on screens in the back of official taxis — and she didn’t seem completely opposed to it.

“That’ll be a really fun test,” Wampler said.


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