Interviews, insight & analysis on digital media & marketing

NDA Meets: Joy Dean, Head of Attention UK, Tobii ATTEX, Attention Data Exchange

Joy Dean is Head of Attention UK, Tobii ATTEX, an attention data exchange. A self-described Startup Queen, for the last 18 years she’s played a pivotal role in the growth of adtech including at Tribal Fusion before it became Exponential/, launching Widespace pre-Azerion, launching the programmatic arm of Ogury and, finally, launching the supply partnership side of Invibes Network.

The conversation covers subjects such as the need to refocus on the quality of the data that powers methods of measuring attention in advertising, why attention alone can’t be used as a standalone metric, the danger of gamifying it, and why it will never become a new currency.

“Everyone in the attention space has a different view on how we should measure it. In any near future we won’t see agreement on what measurement is. Will it be standardised in the near future? No. Will there be some kind of baseline we all agree on? Yes, I can see that happening. I don’t think it will or should become a currency but should be a piece, in combination with others, of buying.”

She describes Tobii ATTEX as a world leader in eye tracking. Since 2001 it worked on perfecting the technology in areas like medical research, self-driving systems, VR and gaming. In 2017 it launched an attention-data exchange.

“We are so different from what’s offered in the attention space. Our sell is only the data. We never stop collecting data, it’s always on,” she says. “Our main goal is not to productise the data but to take it out to the ecosystem and put the raw data in the hands of the customer to let them build their own attention-optimisation products.”