American City Business Journals Launches Self-Serve Ad Portal Powered by FatTail, An Enterprise AdTech Company

New Solution Seamlessly Connects Advertisers to Key Assets and Information, So Local and National Ad Sales Teams Can Focus on Driving Higher-Revenue Deals

LOS ANGELES, Oct. 20, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- American City Business Journals (ACBJ), the largest publisher of metropolitan business newsweeklies in the United States, today announced the launch of their self-serve advertising portal. The solution will allow digital advertisers to directly manage ad campaigns and collect performance insights, enabling the ACBJ’s revenue operations teams to focus on deepening client relationships and pursuing higher-value deals.

The self-serve solution was developed in partnership with FatTail, the enterprise technology company powering premium advertising supply for the world’s leading publishers. The result was AdBookPortal, a highly configurable, industry-first software solution, designed to save time and provide greater transparency and control of ad execution from quote to cash. It seamlessly communicates with other mission critical systems such as CRM, OMS, and Finance to streamline information flow and eliminate time-consuming manual processes – and now the features and tools within AdBookPortal are available to the broader market of premium publishers.

Traditionally, self-serve ad platforms haven’t been an attractive offering to premium publishers. They tend to cater to managing small ad deals, which have not materially moved the revenue needle for publishers the way they need it. Traditional self-serve ad platforms are disconnected from the order management system which means product, pricing and inventory information tends to be static and limited

Tech Innovation Sparked by True Partnership

ACBJ has relied on FatTail’s advertising platform, AdBook+, as its media planning, sales, and revenue solution for sixteen years and recognized that the inherent capabilities of an order management system could be extended to advertisers to streamline intercompany workflow and drive down transaction costs.

When developing AdBookPortal, ACBJ and FatTail set out to take an entirely different approach focusing instead on automating a few of the really tough pain points through purpose built “apps” (i.e., payments, campaign management and creatives) and integrating AdBookPortal with AdBookOMS to provide connected workflow and real-time information.

“As the largest news organization focused on local economies, we intentionally develop deep ties with our local business communities. We have a variety of client types, from major national brands to single market startups so it’s critical we provide products and services for all types and sizes of businesses,” said Ryan Whittington, SVP, ACBJ. “With AdBookPortal, we can redirect our time to optimize and grow these partnerships AND make our teams work more engaging and valuable. Many of our client’s only marketing efforts are with their local business journals and we want to give them an experience that matches their commitment.”

American City Business Journals (ACBJ) is the largest publisher of metropolitan business newsweeklies in the United States, with 44 business publications across the country reaching more than 3.6 million readers each week.

Self-Serve is a Revenue Lifeline for Local (and National) Publishers

ACBJ is not unique in facing this challenge. The same pain points were echoed by a majority of participants in FatTail’s recent survey of top publishers. According to the survey data, 60% of publishers point to time constraints, noting “there is not enough time or resources to service customers in the way that they expect or that the business demands.” Meanwhile, 92% of publishers said that the majority of communication with advertising partners occurs over email.

Finally, 100% of the publishers surveyed say they would characterize “nirvana” as “allowing my team to do higher value activities,” something ACBJ is already realizing. Sample return-on-investments for ACBJ include:

  • Operational benefits of one platform to manage any media type, order size and payment options of the media business.
  • In just 5 short months ACBJ has collected over $1M of revenue through AdBookPortal, with a direct connection to their invoicing system, the option to pay online is highly convenient for the advertiser and makes the collections process more efficient and timely.
  • Automating the creative chasing process, providing a central and standard way to collect, assign and approve creative yields an approx. 10% time saving for client success team members.
  • Making screenshots available via AdBookPortal for any user to access or download will save ~0.5 FTE at the outset. ACBJ is looking to drive further efficiencies by integrating a screenshot automation vendor in 2022.

The opportunity to partner with ACBJ on this project also serves a core mission of FatTail: helping professional journalism thrive through innovative solutions that support the direct relationship between publishers and their advertisers.

“While Congress-led initiatives like the Local Journalism and Sustainability Act are an important step toward bolstering local and community news organizations, media companies need business solutions that help them grow and thrive in this new, increasingly digital and increasingly automated landscape,” said Doug Huntington, FatTail’s Founder & CEO. “FatTail is proud to launch AdBookPortal with this first wave of customers as part of our own ongoing effort to support professional journalism in all of its many forms. We see AdBookPortal as a critical business tool that can help any type of publisher, be it locally-focused or national.”

AdBookPortal For Advertisers
The portal benefits our clients through enhanced visibility into their advertising campaigns, including reporting and invoices, and it allows them to take action to manage creative, payments and more.

Benefits and Key Features:

  • Creative management self-service: upload/manage creative for your campaign. View deadlines, status of creatives and more.
  • View campaign status and performance data.
  • View, manage and pay invoices; login and make payments and get notified when payments are due.
  • Gain access to screenshots and other supporting documents.
  • Product support: Chat with a support person.

AdBookPortal For Publishers
AdBookPortal benefits publishers’ Client Success, Ad Ops, and Accounting teams through greater automation of workflows and more connected tools to perform their job functions. This added efficiency allows internal ad operations teams to focus more on higher value tasks that have a greater impact on the relationship with clients and that grow overall revenue.

Benefits and Key Features:

  • More seamless communication and accessibility for internal teams such as ad operations, accounting, and client support.
  • Easy to use, configurable platform gives publishers flexibility to put power and ownership in the hands of their advertising clients.
  • Streamline billing and collections process by providing direct-access, self-service payment options for clients.
  • View campaigns and key performance insights - publishers can direct advertisers (or internal teams) to self-service access for standard reporting data.
  • Accelerate the creative workflow process. Self-service options allow advertisers/clients to upload and track creative assets, deadlines.

AdBookPortal is configurable and allows publishers to provide both advertisers and agencies with controlled access to information and data as needed.

Listen to Doug Huntington and Ryan Whittington talk more about how their partnership evolved and how AdBookPortal came to life here.

Learn more at or contact us at to schedule a demo.

About FatTail
FatTail is a global enterprise advertising technology company. We power the only unified direct and premium programmatic supply platform. Our cloud-based solutions give publishers total control of media planning, sales, and revenue across a wide variety of advertising products and channels and offers Demand Side Systems differentiated “top of the funnel” inventory supply from the world’s most trusted brands. FatTail is dedicated to helping professional journalism thrive by ensuring publishers retain more of each advertising dollar they produce. Learn more at

Media Contact
John McCartney
Radix Collective for FatTail

A video accompanying this announcement is available at: