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How Brands Are Using TV Audience Data

Television isn’t dead, as some might claim, and advertisers should be paying attention to it as it is certainly evolving in significant ways. Viewers can now watch their favorite shows on a range of devices through both traditional television networks and services, and streaming services.

According to a recent Pew Research Center survey, cable connections are the primary means of watching TV for 59% of U.S. adults, while 28% use streaming services, and 9% use digital antennas. Not surprisingly, the use of streaming services is even higher among young adults. Among those between the ages of 18 and 29, 61% use streaming services as their primary means of watching television, 31% use a cable or satellite subscription, and 5% use a digital antenna.

Thanks to the rise of internet-based TV services, we can now watch shows on numerous different devices, including smart TVs, laptops, tablets and smartphones, and even switch back and forth between devices within one viewing session. This introduction to Connected TV presents both new challenges and opportunities for marketers.

How Is TV Advertising Changing? (It’s All About TV + Digital)

In the past, advertisers used basic demographic information to target their ads, with age and gender being the main attributes considered. There were also fewer networks and fewer options for devices on which you could watch. As the TV industry grew and technology evolved, the TV ad landscape became more complex.

Incredibly Detailed Data

Thanks largely to the advent of digital technologies, marketers today can have access to incredibly detailed data about TV viewers. Rather than just basic demographic information such as age and gender, they can now determine in-depth information about viewers’ interests, preferences, purchase habits, location and much more. This enables them to target increasingly specific audiences and has led to a rise in spending on data and data services by brands. According to a recent survey of U.S. companies by the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB), 69% of companies increased their data-related spending in 2018 and 2017, and 78% expect to increase their investments in 2019.

Marketers also need to contend with viewers watching content across multiple devices. Over-the-top (OTT) content, or content that viewers access over the internet rather than through a cable or broadcast TV service, continues to gain popularity. Users can watch this advanced TV content on laptops, tablets, smartphones, connected TVs (CTVs) and even regular TVs turned smart using devices like gaming systems and add-on streaming devices.

While this creates complexity for advertisers, it also provides opportunities for creating more precisely targeted campaigns. Marketers can leverage a people-based ID solution to determine relationships that exist between devices and use this information to target individual users with cohesive, sequential campaigns across all of their devices. This is essential for reaching modern audiences, and it helps marketers to reach the right individuals at the right times to drive conversions.

With new data technologies and audience-based advertising, marketers can now target their ads to specific segments of users who have a niche interest or fit a relatively detailed description. This enhanced TV audience targeting leads to less ad waste and more conversions because it helps brands more accurately target users who are interested in their products or services. This increased precision is possible because of advancements in viewing technology, the increased complexity of the modern viewer’s TV habits and modern data and analytics technologies.

Using TV Audience Data to Plan More Effective Campaigns

By moving beyond basic demographic audience targeting and incorporating more detailed data and targeting technologies, marketers can improve the effectiveness of their TV and digital video marketing campaigns. Here are some of the strategies you can use to bolster your advertising efforts using TV audience data.

1. Activate TV Audiences and Amplify Across Screens

Marketers today have more data available to them than ever before. By using this data, advertisers can create precise TV data segments to target the exact kinds of users they’re looking to reach with a campaign.

You can purchase third-party data, which is data that’s been aggregated from multiple data sources, from third-party data marketplaces such as the Lotame TV Data Exchange. Lotame has relationships with TV manufacturers and providers of streaming video, which enables us to access linear TV viewership data at scale from opted-in Smart TVs. Our data exchange provides access to audience segments created using data from cookies, mobile device IDs and Smart TVs worldwide, including Automatic Content Recognition data, or ACR data, which tracks the content that viewers watch on their Smart TVs. Lotame’s team of data experts can provide you with an exact match of opted-in Smart TVs, without inflated numbers.

TV Advertising

Lotame TV Data Exchange brings precision, previously only available in digital channels, to TV advertising. With nearly 170 pre-packaged audiences, advertisers have the ability to narrowly target by genre, show, network, dayparts, tentpoles, and commercial viewership. Our team can also create custom audiences to match your unique needs. With Lotame, TV + Digital audience activation has never been easier or more transparent.

2. Combine First-Party and Third-Party Data

Combining your own first-party data with relevant third-party data can help you to learn more about your audience and improve the results of your campaigns. Third-party data enables you to find new viewers who are likely to become customers because they share characteristics with your current audience or customers. It can also help you to determine which ads generate the most sales, app downloads or website visits. These advantages can help marketers to optimize their audience segmentation and campaigns.

By layering on second- and third-party data at scale, you can target ads based on a wide range of behavioral, psychographic, demographic and geographic data points such as viewers’ interests, life stage and purchase intent. Combining these various attributes enables you to get very specific with your targeting to ensure improved performance across channels.

If you’re looking to target an audience small in scale, Lotame Audience Optimizer can help you find additional reach. Audience Optimizer uses proprietary, powerful machine-learning algorithms to create look-alike and act-alike audiences based on your data. The tool analyzes the behavioral attributes of user profiles to determine which characteristics best predict whether a user will take your desired action, whether that’s making a purchase, visiting your website or downloading an app. By focusing on your key performance indicators (KPIs), Audience Optimizer can help you boost the performance of your campaigns using first-party and third-party data.

3. Make Smarter Buying Decisions

With Lotame TV Analytics, gain clearer insights into your TV and digital campaigns. Lotame TV Analytics gives you a 360-degree view of consumers watching your TV shows or commercials, and enables you to take action with a click. Leverage your first-party online and offline data, or access the world’s largest marketplace of second- and third-party data, to generate TV + Digital audience overlap and index reports that are on-demand, high definition and binge-worthy.

Ultimately, learning more about your audience and using predictive analytics to assess their behavior enables you to make smarter buying decisions. Having more data to inform your campaigns helps you to reach more of your target audience, reduce ad waste and improve your campaign ROI.

4. Connect with People Across Devices

Today’s TV and video viewers watch content across multiple screens and can even switch devices in between viewing sessions. They use standard TVs as well as smartphones, computers, tablets and smart TVs.

Messaging Across Screens

This means that to reach viewers effectively, advertisers need to create cohesive messaging across these various screens. To do this, they must understand the connections between devices to determine which ones belong to the same users.

Understanding which devices are linked to the same users enables you to create sequential messaging that moves a potential customer through the marketing funnel across their numerous devices, rather than treating each device as a separate customer. This helps viewers to move through your sales funnel more quickly. After all, you want to connect with people, not a device.

Not understanding the connections between devices could also lead to missed opportunities. For instance, you might be advertising a new car to someone on their laptops because they searched for new car prices on that device. However, if they pull out their phone to look for local deals on new cars, and you don’t know that phone belongs to the same user, you could miss out on serving them an ad when they’re looking for a car dealership to visit. They might find another dealership or a competitor might show them an ad, causing you to potentially lose the lead.

Understanding the connections between devices down to the person-level enables you to send your audience the right message at the right time on the right device to boost conversions.

Determining the connections between devices requires a people-based ID solution like Lotame Cartographer. Our powerful ID graph delivers complete, consistent, and compliant data connections to power people-based marketing. Cartographer plots, clusters, and shares diverse data connections so brands and publishers can plan, activate, and analyze how they want.

5. Target TV Commercials for Competitive Conquesting

In addition to leveraging TV commercials for brand amplification, marketers can use Lotame TV Data Exchange to target TV commercial viewers by several verticals, including:

  • Home improvement
  • Banking and payment
  • Wireless
  • Men’s health
  • DIY
  • Weight loss
  • Baby
  • Snack food
  • And many more
  • Marketers can also request custom built segments for more refined targeting

With Lotame, you can also target individuals who have already seen your competitor’s ads. Instead of paying for competing TV spots, you can target these potential customers across their digital devices with messages that explain why they should choose your product over the competitor’s. This approach enables you to gain market share while running more efficient campaigns.

To learn more about how we can help you leverage TV audience data to improve your advertising campaigns and strategies, contact us to learn!