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Take a Glimpse into the Future of Business Innovation

How the IAB 250 Helps Marketers Get Ahead of Business Trends

Let’s take a moment to think back ten years or so, to a simpler time, when the iPhone and Facebook were still novelties, “Yes, We Can” was a political rally cry, and Lost was leaving television audiences across the country utterly perplexed. If someone back then told you that by 2018, the world’s largest transportation company would not own a single car, or that the leading accommodation provider would not own a single property, you’d probably think they were foolish, or just watching too much Lost. Today, we know better.

When it comes to your sales and marketing, knowing the companies that are going to become major players in the economy will help you prioritize the right accounts and identify previously undefined targets.
Mike Goldberg

The rise of technology has rapidly changed the face of business as we know it. Companies that were relatively unknown just a decade ago are leveraging innovative business models to challenge brands that have been household names for decades, even centuries – and in a fraction of the time it took those institutions to cement their reputation. So, what gives?


This new breed of brand is fueled by digital and data. They have built an entire ecosystem to promote, engage and interact with customers directly. Because of this unique relationship, they often take a flexible approach to matters such as capital generation and supply chain management, freeing them up to operate in ways traditional bands never imagined.

As you’re reading this article, there are probably hundreds of new, innovative companies you don’t know about that may soon overtake some very familiar brands to become the “growth engine of the new economy,” according to the Interactive Advertising Bureau’s (IAB) CEO, Randall Rothenberg. Therefore, it’s imperative for everyone operating in the business world to recognize who these next great companies are, before it’s too late.

Recognizing the need to identify the emerging brands that are changing the business landscape, the IAB released the ‘IAB 250 Powered by Dun & Bradstreet’. This first-of-its-kind analysis pinpoints the most important brands to watch in the US economy and showcases how the future may unfold across different product categories.

Companies on the list were selected through screening hard economic attributes, derived from Dun & Bradstreet’s data set of more than 290 million business records, and cultural impact provided by a variety of data sources such as site traffic, social media footprint, media mentions and more. This includes core commercial intelligence like Dun & Bradstreet’s D-U-N-S Number®, industry classification (SIC Code), employees, and corporate revenue. In addition, payment experience and inquiry data on these entities were used to create a look-alike model to scan the D-U-N-S universe of all entities, ensuring a list that is a pretty good indicator of the companies of the future. No time machine needed.

What is needed is structured and organized data that can help you identify opportunities – and threats – before they happen. When it comes to your sales and marketing, knowing the companies that are going to become major players in the economy will help you prioritize the right accounts and identify previously undefined targets. The IAB 250 represents the opportunity to use data as the foundation for understanding the companies that are likely to grow in the future, giving you the first-mover advantage.

“The massive collision of commercial data and digital technologies gives business leaders the insights they always wished they had,” said Dun & Bradstreet’s EVP and GM, Global Alliances and Partnerships, Michael Bird. By exploring the data that illuminates relationships among these companies and their paths to—suppliers, vendors, marketing efforts—IAB members will have a robust and highly targeted list of companies to use for their business development efforts.”

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