Prairie Portrait: Ashwin Shashindranath of OneLouder
Name: Ashwin Shashindranath
Bio: Ashwin leads the monetization of over one billion mobile ad impressions across all OneLouder Apps. Prior to managing ads, he helped OneLouder successfully launch multiple mobile apps including Tweetcaster and 1Weather. While not at work, he likes playing Ping Pong and traveling to all corners of the globe.
Title: Director of Mobile Advertising
Residence: Overland Park, Kan.
Intro music: "God Moving Over the Face of the Waters," by Moby
Silicon Prairie News: As a former TweetCaster product manager, what factors would you say led to the app's explosive growth?
Ashwin Shashindranath: There were three primary factors that contributed to the app's growth, the first being the increased number of smartphones launched with Android OS, second being Twitter becoming more mainstream and finally frequent updates to the application based on user feedback.
SPN: What were some of the biggest challenges you encountered in moving from product manager to director of monetization?
AS: It was difficult to move away from the day-to-day product decisions of creating and updating apps. However, thinking about advertising as a product helped me transition into the role more easily. In addition to that, I had to quickly develop business development skills to promote and evangelize our apps to ad networks and advertisers.
SPN: In your current role, how do you keep both users and advertisers happy — not overwhelming users with ads, but not under-delivering for advertisers?
AS: Since I transitioned from a product management role, I have been able to easily empathize with users who dislike advertising. The key to balancing users and advertisers has been to make advertising less intrusive yet more relevant to the user. A large portion of our advertising is location targeted ads which delivers good value to the advertisers and are immediately applicable to users. We are also working with advertisers to build compelling advertising experiences that are targeted to OneLouder app's users.
SPN: What three trips are at the top of your travel to-do list, and why?
AS: It is difficult to narrow down my travel to-do list, but at the moment I would like to travel to Bhutan to experience the country's Gross National Happiness (who wouldn't want to go there?), fly fishing in Patagonia to have my first fishing experience in one of the best fly fishing locations, and ride the entire Trans-Siberian Railway to see Siberia, Lake Baikal and brush up on my broken Russian with Babushkas.
SPN: You tweeted a fair amount about the London Olympics. How about one more Olympic tweet for the road: In under 140 characters, what are your top three moments from the 2012 Games?
AS: #London2012Moments Andy Murray winning a gold medal in his home country; watching the men's trampoline finals; Usain Bolt winning three gold medals
Credits: Photo courtesy of Shashindranath.
Prairie Portraits: To learn more about this series, see our introduction post, or visit our archives for past Prairie Portraits. To suggest an individual for a future Prairie Portrait, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Prairie Portraits are brought to you by Hudl.
We’re a young gang of nerds, marketers, designers, and former jocks who love sports and tech. Where the two meet is our playground. People always tell us, “You guys must have so much fun.” We do. Want to work with us? Check out our current openings: www.hudl.com/jobs.