WeatherFX Brings Reach Extension Program To Twitter

twitter-twcTwitter users will begin to see weather-triggered advertising in their feeds, courtesy of The Weather Company. The companies have set up a partnership under which TWC will bring its advertisers to the platform, as part of its WeatherFX programmatic buying unit.

WeatherFX works in much the same way other publisher “reach extension” plays do, leveraging proprietary data – in TWC’s case, weather data based on user location – into media placements on outside properties. The practice has become common among publishers, including the likes of eBay, Amazon (through Amazon Audience Platform), Time Inc. and most recently Facebook through its new mobile-centric Facebook Audience Network.

“We have built out an off-property extension already for display,” said Jeremy Steinberg, SVP of digital ad sales for The Weather Company. “Now, we’re adding in this Ad API direct integration. We’re also in talks with other ad partners about being able to work hand-in-hand with marketers to activate on Twitter.”

Additionally, the deal is the first instance that Twitter has allowed a media company to purchase ads programmatically via Twitter’s advertising API. Twitter’s other API partners are ad tech companies such as SocialCode and Salesforce’s ExactTarget Marketing Cloud.

“We’ve grown from being a straight media company into being a data- and technology-led platform,” Steinberg said, “The fact that we can now build weather strategies for our marketing partners, leveraging WeatherFX within the confines of our own media facing as well as outside of our four walls, speaks to the potential for weather data and how we can help marketers reach consumers wherever they are in their daily routine.”

The deal presents an opportunity to grow Twitter’s ad base both regionally and nationally. Big-brand sponsors already work with The Weather Channel, as do smaller regional companies. The Twitter platform is, by nature, equalizing for marketers as users share openly their interests and their locations.

No TWC advertisers are amplifying their campaigns on Twitter just yet, but the potential is clear. Using The Weather Channel’s weather predictions, a hardware chain such as Home Depot could launch a campaign for spring gardening tools across Twitter that is triggered before, during or immediately after springtime showers. By the same coin, smaller hardware retailers could target consumers through Twitter using the same weather-activated mechanism.

To date Twitter is the only social platform where TWC buys directly, but that may change as WeatherFX courts additional supply partners that are dabbling in programmatic sales.

“We are prioritizing where we build out next,” Steinberg said. “And we’ll definitely be looking at other social platforms.”

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