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AdWallet’s ‘paid attention’ strategy goes nationwide

Adam Greenhood, CEO of AdWallet, pictured in 2017. (Jim Thompson/ Journal)

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — New Mexico “Mad Man” Adam Greenhood is now paying thousands of consumers in all 50 states to watch ads.

AdWallet LLC, which Greenhood launched in Albuquerque in 2017, has signed up 135,000 people across the country to earn money by watching short digital ads, something the veteran advertising executive calls “paid attention.” About 50,000 consumers are now enrolled in New Mexico, with the rest scattered around the country, Greenhood told Albuquerque Economic Development’s online quarterly investors meeting Thursday.

AED invited Greenhood as a keynote speaker for the event.

AdWallet had only 36,000 participants last year, all of them in New Mexico. But the company launched an aggressive campaign this year to expand nationwide.

“We’ve had a four-fold growth rate during the pandemic,” Greenhood told AED. “It’s really starting to catch on. We doubled our membership just in the last two months.”

To participate, people download a user app. After answering a few questions to match users with commercials most likely to appeal to them, ads start flowing via text messages.

If users watch a commercial, accurately answer a question to make sure they paid attention and rate the commercial, 50 cents is automatically credited to their account. They can earn a couple dollars more by completing a survey after the commercial, sharing the ad on social media, downloading exclusive offers, or providing a personal email address to advertisers.

To date, AdWallet has paid out about $1 million to New Mexico users, Greenhood said.

Some 500 advertisers have used the service, about half of them New Mexico-based. The rest are national brands, such as Choice Hotels, Airbnb, Duracell, Southwest Airlines, Corona and Supercuts.

Advertisers like it because AdWallet guarantees them a captive, targeted audience for their ads, rather than traditional advertising where third-party publishers blindly blanket consumers with ads that people often ignore as an unwanted interruption.

“Instead of paying a publisher to interrupt consumers, AdWallet allows advertisers to award end consumers for their full attention,” Greenhood said.

Marketers pay $1.00 each time a user watches a commercial, but nothing if they don’t, with 50 cents going to the consumer and 50 cents to AdWallet. AdWallet also tracks all user activity, so marketers get instant, detailed feedback on their promotional campaigns.

The company plans more aggressive expansion over the next 18 months, starting with concerted campaigns in Texas and Colorado. It’s goal is 500,000 consumers by year-end 2021, Greenhood told the Journal.

AdWallet has upgraded its technology platform to add up to two million more app users.

It’s raised about $5 million in private equity to date from individual and institutional investors, including Utah-based Kickstart Seed Fund.

“Many companies have cut their marketing budgets during the pandemic, but AdWallet is growing despite the challenges,” said Kickstart Managing Partner Gavin Christensen. “That sets them up well for when advertising budgets start to recover from COVID-19.”


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