Zynga is bolstering its brand advertising efforts by bringing on Julie Shumaker from RockYou as the company’s new vice president of North American sales. She’ll report to Jeff Karp, Zynga’s chief marketing and revenue officer.
The move should help cover at least one recent vacancy. The company’s global director of brand advertising, Manny Anekal, recently defected to mobile advertising startup Kiip to serve as chief operating officer.
Shumaker comes with several years of experience. She was a senior vice president and general manager at RockYou, one of the Facebook platform’s very earliest and notable social gaming companies. Before that, Shumaker ran sales and marketing for 4INFO and she was a general manager at Double Fusion, a gaming advertising startup. She also handled ad sales for EA in consumer products, automobiles, entertainment and beverages.
Even though RockYou was successful very early on, it was later eclipsed by Zynga and oscillated between being a social game developer and an ad platform. Despite RockYou’s shortcomings, Shumaker hopefully will be able to put her seven years of working in gaming and advertising to use at Zynga.
It’s a key time as Zynga is putting its weight behind a gaming destination off Facebook. With its own gaming platform, Zynga should be able to earn a greater revenue share from ads than it has historically. Last year, Zynga earned just $47.1 million or 5.7 percent of its total revenues from advertising. The lion’s share came from virtual currency sales.