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Flying buttresses on an old cathedral: third-party data buttresses ad campaigns

How Third-Party Data Strengthens Ad Campaigns

May 23rd, 2017   ||    by Charlene Weisler   ||    No Comments

As old methodologies give way to data-driven and performance-based metrics, third-party data is pushing the world of TV measurement over the threshold of an immense change. This shift goes beyond audience-based targeting technology to the measurement of actual performance. In fact, Alan Cohen, president and CEO at Quigley-Simpson, sees performance measurement as the “new programmatic.”

Start with the Consumer

Local TV advertising has historically been challenged by multiple constraints. First, a measurement system composed of three methodologies: people meters, household meters, and paper diaries. Second, a measurement period consigned to month-long “sweeps” taking place four times a year. And finally, sample sizes that—in the case of smaller markets—often fell below demographic and household minimum samples. But technological improvements and the availability of third-party data sets allow local advertisers to overcome these limitations.

The ability to dig deeper into target consumer segments with third-party data is proving to be very valuable, both to buyers seeking specific consumer targets and to sellers wanting to maximize the value of their inventory. As a result, measurement companies are charged with keeping up. “Our advertisers want that level of reporting by a Nielsen or a [comScore] Rentrak,” says Carlos Ramirez, group director of cross-screen engagement at Quigley-Simpson, in a MediaPost article. “Without third-party data, television buying remains locked in antiquated demographic targeting,” says Alex Lundry, co-founder of media analytics firm Deep Root Analytics.

Finish with Performance

Performance measurement is being made possible by the qualitative amount and scale of available third- and first-party data, enabling advertisers to accurately examine, track, and post the success of targeted marketing campaigns. For consumer targeting, campaign validation, and strategic insights, the solutions offered by third-party data used in conjunction with ad tech are seemingly limited only by the imagination.

“Thanks to advances in data science and analytics, as well as the increasing availability of third-party data, brand targeting has grown well beyond demographic targeting into targeting based around attitudes and values,” says Lundry. He describes what many in automated TV buying are coming to know well: better data means better targeting—and ultimately—better ROI on ad spend.

Recognize the Value

Since clients currently rely on standardized deliverables, there are custom data approaches that can add value for marketers while still enabling historical comparison. “The MVPDs are offering addressability, ad-supported video on demand, and even programmatic that is national and, at the same time, targeted. Local broadcasters don’t have that technology,” says Mitch Oscar, advanced TV strategist at USIM, “They sell the entire DMA [designated market area] based on age and gender only.” Enter companies like comScore, which offer the ability to target audiences by individual shows within the DMA, says Oscar, and “you start to show more value for your audience, even on a national basis.”

Automated TV buying offers a deeper targeting ability, notes Oscar, and “while still limited to DMA delivery, provides much more than age and gender data.” This creates better value for both TV stations and their advertisers. Companies able to merge the comparability of standard metrics with the targetability of third-party and custom data will ultimately be the ones to achieve true performance measurement—and their day isn’t far off.

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