Advanced Television

NBCU ‘Audience Targeting Platform’

January 16, 2015

NBCUniversal says it can use data to find commercials in its inventory that will target consumers with less waste and help clients achieve their marketing goals. It calls the capability Audience Targeting Platform and says it has begun talking with clients about media buys beginning in the fourth quarter of 2015.

The scheme will begin with a handful of categories in which demand for key commercial inventory exceeds supply, according to Linda Yaccarino, recently promoted to chairman of advertising sales and client partnerships at NBC. About a third of NBCU inventory will be set aside for the targeting.

Clients will identify their marketing plans and audience targets, and the Audience Targeting Platform will use data from set top box viewing and several third party data sources to find matches in NBCU’s inventory and allocate those commercials as part of the client’s TV advertising schedule.

“Marketers no longer have to choose between digital media’s data-driven targeting and television’s scale and unparalleled ability to communicate via great storytelling. Now, we are unique in our ability to deliver on our promise of targeting nationally and insights-driven programme selections across the entire NBCUniversal portfolio. Video content is more powerful in the presence of data,” said Yaccarino.

Yaccarino said the ATP involved NBCU’s entire inventory, from the Today show to Tonight, and from Telemundo to Oxygen. She said that having all of NBCU’s sales efforts consolidated and running through a single computer system helped make all of its inventory available through the platform.

Data and technology is becoming a bigger part of the TV advertising business. Many networks are looking for ways to target viewers beyond the standard age and sex demos that worked well for a mass media. Automation is also being experimented with as a way to increase efficiency and several TV companies have begun offering programmatic buying, which also uses data to match ads to consumer targets.

A year ago, NBCU introduced NBCU+ Powered by Comcast, which offered increased targeting and measurement for television ad campaigns on Comcast nets.

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