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What can one learn through a combination of the Peace Corps, CPA training, and the ad tech world? On Street Fight’s Heard on the Street Podcast, we often talk about the virtues of “cross-training” in a given career path. Perhaps no one embodies that principle more than VRTCAL founder Todd Wooten.

As the latest guest on the show, Wooten summarizes the above journey and advice for younger executives. Among the lessons: Be knowledgeable about the job of everyone you manage. You don’t have to have ninja-level expertise, but know the basics of functions like sales, engineering, and accounting.

As for VRTCAL, the company streamlines digital advertising and the many siloed functions between advertisers and publishers (DSPs, SSPs, ad networks, etc.). Through its SaaS-packaged “open SSP,” it has been able to bring publishers 25% more revenue through optimization and automation.

It does this through what Wooten calls demand path optimization (DPO), which brings publishers more control. The advertiser counterpart, supply path optimization, already helps advertisers find the best inventory. Wooten asserts that DPO can close the loop for the holistic holy grail: ad path optimization.

We discuss how the company is doing this on the latest episode. Listen above, find out more about Heard on the Street, and see our episode archive hereContact us if you’d like to sponsor an episode, and check out Street Fight’s media kit for the full slate of visibility options.

Mike Boland has been a tech & media analyst for the past two decades, specifically covering mobile, local, and emerging technologies. He has written for Street Fight since 2011. More can be seen at