One Step Toward Programmatic TV; Yahoo Rumor Mill Churns

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NBCU Surfaces More Audience Data

“Advertisers don’t need to choose between data-driven targeting, which lives mostly in digital, and the scale of TV,” Linda Yaccarino, ad sales honcho at NBC Universal, told Ad Age. To back that, NBC Universal’s calling attention to its Audience Targeting Platform, debuted during last year’s upfront. This year, the broadcast behemoth plans to pitch inventory more like digital, leveraging set-top box data and other insights to more narrowly slice its audiences. Adds Yaccarino, “Clients want more precision, effectiveness and efficiencies.” Targeting is still contextual. Advertisers will buy shows, not individual impressions, but have more audience attributes to inform the decision.

Ad Products Shuffle At Yahoo

After shuttering the exchange formerly known as Right Media (AdExchanger story), Marissa Mayer is making org changes in the company’s ad platforms. Flurry product chief Prashant Fuloria will oversee all ad products, WSJ reports from on an internal memo. Reporting to him will be current ad tech honcho Scott Burke, who is praised in the memo, and Brightroll CEO Tod Sacerdoti. “We’re aligning our product teams to better execute our revenue goals,” Mayer wrote to staff. “2015 is the year that we return our display revenue to growth.” Read it. And, Re/code has some details.

Slapping Verizon

Verizon’s persistent mobile tracking mechanism, called PrecisionID, is drawing some negative attention this week. Writing in his Web Policy blog, Stanford professor and privacy gadfly Jonathan Mayer posted a teardown of Verizon’s “zombie cookie” and how one company, buy-side platform Turn, appears to be using it. Read it. ProPublica’s Julia Angwin and Mike Tigas then run with the story, stating, “ProPublica’s tests showed that even Verizon users who installed the Turn opt-out cookie continued to receive the Turn tracking cookie as well. Turn said despite the appearance of the tracking cookie, it continues to honor the opt-out cookie.” Here’s more from the AdExchanger crypt: Can You Identify Me Now? A Deep Dive On Verizon’s Data Practices.

Creative Automation

2014 was the year for programmatic (named word of the year by the ANA!), but 2015 will see a deeper focus on creativity within automation, according to Warc. In its Toolkit 2015 report, Warc sussed out that Kellogg thinks programmatic is 30% about the media and 70% about the creative. “To date, the debate around programmatic media has been firmly centered on the ‘how’ of operations and behavioral metrics such as cost per click,” commented Millward Brown’s global brand director for digital, Duncan Southgate. “In 2015 we expect marketers to be equally focused on the benefits programmatic may be able to bring to building meaningful brands and the opportunities to leverage it more creatively.” More.

WebMD Chief On Advertising

Speaking to investors on Thursday, WebMD CEO David Schlanger said health-inclined sites are uniquely positioned to link advertisers to audiences. The blockbuster drugs of the past were targeted to large audiences, he said, but the shift to digital allows pharmaceutical companies and advertisers to isolate conditions and target those niche audiences. “For those niche audiences, it’s really inefficient to use mass media [for targeting] because you’re looking for a needle in the haystack,” he said, “Whereas on WebMD we can target those audiences effectively, and measure the impact of the program. The nature of pharma pipelines is going to help the migration from mass media to digital.”

Youths And Their Apps

Young Americans are spending as much or more time in messaging apps as on social networks, according to a study published Thursday by Frank N. Magid Associates. The data shows that messaging apps are cannibalizing lots of 14- to 17-year-olds from Facebook. “Users have become accustomed to interacting with brands on platforms like Facebook and Twitter,” said Tero Kuittinen, managing director at Magid Associates. “However, as older social apps struggle with momentum in the youth market, brands are taking a closer look at messenger platforms like Kik and Snapchat, which offer unrestricted organic reach and younger audiences that want to engage with brands.” Read the press release.

Put A Pin In It

Forrester released a report on Thursday that takes a good, hard – mostly hard – look at Pinterest. According to the report, the data behind the social scrapbooking site has the potential to drive more sales than Facebook’s data, but advertisers are struggling to capitalize on it. “Pinterest’s marketing value lies more in the future than in the present,” writes Forrester analyst Nate Elliott. “By 2016, Pinterest’s ad offering could trump that of other social sites. … Once the site broadens its targeting capabilities, though, it’ll be time to spend.” Read it…and still more from CMO Today and Pinfluencers.

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