Ask the Expert: A Q&A series with AdTech and data intelligence experts

In our ongoing ‘Ask the Expert’ Q&A series, we dive deep into the world of data and insights shaping today’s business and marketing landscape.

In this insightful Part Two video, Debbie Oates, Director of Customer Engagement at Experian Marketing Services joins Joe Kinchin, Director of Strategy and Commercial Partnerships at Finecast (part of GroupM Nexus), the UK’s leading addressable TV platform. They delve into the complexities of defining audiences in data-driven TV advertising and highlight Finecast’s partnership with Experian to obtain best-in-class data sets for audience attitude and behavioural analysis, enabling the creation of targeted campaigns based on specific brand needs.

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  • Defining audiences in data-driven advertising:

    Delving into the intricacies of audience definition in the context of data-driven advertising. Also, emphasising how the partnership with Experian allows Finecast to create intentional campaigns tailored to specific brand needs.

  • Examples from automotive and health & beauty sectors:

    Using real-world examples from automotive and health and beauty sectors to illustrate how Finecast leverages Experian’s data for targeted campaigns.

  • Balance between targeted capability and mass reach:

    Exploring how Finecast strikes a balance between targeted capability and mass reach, demonstrating expertise in reaching specific audiences while maintaining broad reach for branding.

  • Evolving metrics of campaign success:

    Discussing the evolving metrics of campaign success, emphasising the importance of measuring outcomes beyond traditional brand uplift, including web engagement and actual sales.

  • Shift of TV into a performance channel:

    Touching on the potential shift of TV into a performance channel and introducing concepts like addressable creative and data-driven campaigns.

  • Insights into generative AI in TV advertising:

    Providing insights into the transformative role of generative AI in TV advertising, envisioning its impact on creating highly tailored videos on the fly and enhancing measurement capabilities.

  • Advice for advertisers considering TV expansion:

    Offering valuable advice for advertisers considering TV expansion, encouraging them to embrace innovative capabilities, dispel outdated notions, and engage in testing and experimentation.

Throughout the discussion, it summarises a comprehensive exploration of the evolving landscape of TV advertising, emphasising the pivotal role of data and insights in driving effective campaigns.

How Experian and Finecast work together

Experian provides Finecast (part of GroupM Nexus) with geo-aggregated or personal identifiers that does not disclose personal information. Finecast leverages this data to optimise marketing campaigns at a geographic level, identifying regions and areas where residents have more affinity toward the product and services of their customers.

Through an exclusive partnership with Experian, Finecast harnesses a unique depth of insights, allowing brands to effectively target their ideal customers. It ensures the brand message reaches consumers with levels of interest in products and services. Also, it precisely measures impact by identifying segments and locations that drive the most engagement and conversions. The collaboration of Experian and Finecast ensures marketers streamline optimisation, eliminate waste, and boost the return on digital investments.

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How are you defining audiences?

What type of audiences are advertisers interested in?

So we work with Experian, who can provide us withthe best-in-class data sets for attitudinal and behavioural looks at audiences.

And that really allows us to create campaigns that are much more intentional for the brand.

So an example could be where previously if you were doing an automotive campaign, you’d probably just go for a broad, male demographic, but now we can actually look at what certain attitudes are, what the sort of behaviours are.

And so you could perhaps, if you were doing a BMW campaign, for instance, you can create a more kind of luxury-type audience and target that within those specific geolocations.

That’s a really interesting example, thanks.

Have you got any others, just in terms of wider sectors and how they’re using different types of audiences?

Yeah, sure, so Experian provide some great data around health and beauty.

And so we’re able to provide…
Boots is one of our clients and we provide them with a multitude of different activities for specific brands.

What you’d see is that for each different campaign or different product, there would be slight variations in the audiences that we can build because obviously, there’s going to be slight variations in the customers of set products.

Ultimately, that’s what we’re able to provide through the Experian data set,

There is a hyper-focused audience across top-quality, premium content.

And in terms of layering on different data sources as well, then, have you got an example of how you could merge different data providers to drive a particular audience?

We often get asked around kind of, you know, audiences that answer certain trends that we’re seeing at a wider social level.

One of the main ones that we’re seeing that kind of crosses a lot of brand consideration now is obviously sustainability and so we can draw on our data providers to help provide those custom segments.

So, Experian have provided us with a custom segment to kind of answer different levels of interest in sustainability.

And so we can attach those audiences to different levels of messaging that brands are putting out there.

And we can use that customisable audience with another data set, say, it’s a transactional data set that have audiences that are only buying sustainable products and you can kind of look at what that audience looks like from a geographical view.

So we’ve spoken a lot around the different types of audiences and fragmentation.

How do advertisers balance very targeted capability with actually mass reach?

Where’s the balance?

It’s important to say that, you know, mass reach on TV has long provided great results for advertisers.

And it’s still that ability to get your message out there from a branding perspective to a wide audience, will always kind of do a great job.

And so what we do at Finecast is whilst we’re talking about more relevancy in your brand, so we’ll use the automotive scenario again.

There’ll probably be a very large audience for a luxury car brand, they’ll just be dotted around in different parts of the country.

It is balancing that, it’s still giving you strong reach, but it’s giving you reach to the audience that really matters.

A lot of our campaigns are really focused on that intentional reach, I guess.

If you do have a much more kind of niche type of audience, if you just have a product that is only going to be bought by a real small percentage of the UK population, we have the data sets that can kind of plan for that and we have the data sets through the data partnerships with Experian and our transactional data partnerships.

If you also have a brand that really is looking at, you know, advertising to a smaller percentage of the UK population because they just have a very specific product, the data sets that exist within our framework, such as Experian and our transactional data partners, allow you to really form that refined audience.

But there, it’s maybe not about reach, it’s about providing further engagement with that product or even actual sales with that product.

And we make sure that we can measure that through our suite of products.

So how are things shifting?

Are people looking at different metrics on which to frame campaign success in the kind of environment of more advanced targeting?

Our focus for a lot of big-brand advertisers remains, you know, will be with the level of reach that they’re achieving.

As we are experiencing a more fragmented world, we need to understand where those additional reach points are coming from.

And so we have to provide a solution that can look at that, not only across platform within the TV world, but with also omnichannel and across channels of what their branding objectives are doing for a full campaign.

But we’re definitely seeing both big-brand advertisers and your smaller challenger brands now looking at what the actual outcomes look like.

And so we do that through a variety of ways.

There’s obviously brand uplift but then you can go deeper and we can look at what your web uplift might look like and even what your actual sales might look like.

And without going too deep into the methodology, but the geo-postcode approach is really useful for us here because we can kind of cut out a portion of that audience and we can do a control versus exposed methodology to measure what the lift was for web uplift, or as I say, sales.

That’s great, Joe. That really shows how measurable TV has become.

I suppose it leans in to some of the talk that’s out in the industry at the moment around TV, whether it’s going to become a performance channel, a bit like programmatic and social.

What do you think about that? Yes, no?

Too early to tell at the moment?

Yeah, it’s an interesting topic.

I would absolutely say that TV can become a performance channel.

I just don’t think it’s going to look the same as what we’re used to from a programmatic or display or even search perspective.

We have to create audiences and campaigns that make sense for a TV-watching audience.

You’re rarely talking to a one-to-one individual.

There’s normally more than one person around the screen.

And so, you know, you need to be careful in your messaging around how you’re going to be effective there.

But there are going to be, or there are, a whole range of new capabilities within TV advertising that will enable kind of more performance-led activity.

You know, one of those things is kind of voice control of talking to an in-house speaker and asking that to add a product to their basket, which is a great way to get around the fact that we can’t click on a TV advertisement.

The more tangible solutions that we’re seeing right now is what can be done around addressable creative.

That ability to automate creation of different iterations of an asset.

And so through that, you can create hundreds, thousands of different messages, like, slightly tweaked and deliver that to a slightly different audience of which we have, obviously, the data sets behind there.

And so we’re going to see a lot more of, I guess, data-driven creative campaigns coming in, which I think will benefit performance objectives.

Yeah, and it’s really exciting to hear those kind of longer-term trends that you see coming into the kind of TV advertising space there.

So, obviously, the hottest topic around at this moment in time is generative AI and how it’s going to change the industry.

How do you think it will feed into TV advertising?

Yeah, so I think what we just spoke about in terms of addressable creative is an area that it certainly can provide, you know, can provide value for that ability to create specific videos on the fly in the thousands and even in the millions and then address those videos to specific audiences is going to be really powerful within the industry.

And AI can help do that by kind of creating even more elaborate changes to that video, so that you’re really being intentional about how you speak to that specific audience.

The other kind of area where we potentially would see AI helping is within the measurement space.

It’s no secret around the challenges that we face around measuring across different platforms and different channels.

But ultimately, that’s a huge ask from advertisers and so AI would be able to kind of help bring those, you know, bring those disparate data sets together, potentially.

That does require human collaboration within the industry.

So probably that will take a little bit more time than what we’re seeing from a creative perspective.

OK. So we’ve covered an awful lot through the discussion today.

In terms of the people that are potentially thinking about expanding TV,

I’m guessing also, the addressable nature also brings in advertisers that maybe couldn’t have looked at TV advertising before.

So have you got kind of any key things that people should be thinking about as they’re looking at potentially expanding what they’re doing within the TV space?

First of all, it’s important to say, not to be held back by what your kind of traditional perception of what a TV advertiser can be.

There are a whole new range of capabilities within this space now and so it’s important to do the research, ask the questions and ultimately, with everything with advertising, be clear about the objectives that you want to achieve.

The idea that you need kind of a big, expensive creative to run on TV just no longer is true and the idea that you need to be reaching an audience in the millions doesn’t need to be true as well.

So, don’t be kind of scared of dipping your toe.

Talk to everyone around the industry, find out what is feasible, what might not be feasible and don’t be scared to test, because it’s a really innovative space.

Yeah, and I think we’ve demonstrated that today through the conversation, definitely.

It’s been great just to discuss the types of things that are available to TV advertisers.

And how data audience measurement, so, kind of data and insight, can really drive more effective TV advertising.

If you want to hear more about how data and insight can drive business and marketing effectiveness then keep an eye out for the next in our Ask The Expert series.

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