WarnerMedia’s wide range of shows, personalities and topics means the company can create vastly different types of branded content. Data plays a key role in matchmaking between the advertiser’s target audience and the content and delivery those potential customers like best.
The teams using Launchpad, WarnerMedia’s insights tool, start their sales pitch by showing how their brands show up across social media channels and perform (or don’t) compared to competitors.
Then WarnerMedia uses data to determine where interests overlap between its audiences and the advertiser’s brand – allowing WarnerMedia branded content experts to pinpoint the best talent and approach to share the advertiser’s message.
“This [data] allows us to scale our ability to create personalized content,” said Frank Kavilanz, founder of Launchpad and SVP of growth strategy at WarnerMedia. “We have great storytelling capabilities. The more we can segment audiences and understand each segment, we can create personalized content for a variety of audiences for the marketer.”
With this data-informed approach, Launchpad has run more than 1,300 campaigns since it started four years ago. To hit a new level of maturity, Launchpad recently refined its process to bring data more seamlessly into campaign planning.
When Launchpad started, it used a homegrown tool that stitched together data from multiple sources, including key partner Shareablee. But that tool became unwieldy to maintain, and eventually employees were forced to log into three to four tools to aggregate all the information they needed.
So four years in, WarnerMedia is handing over management of the front-end user interface to Shareablee, which will become the central clearinghouse for that data.
WarnerMedia will still use multiple data sources, including its owned data, to make decisions. But now it can hand off the tech work to a tech company instead of spending resources doing it internally.
“I just got out of the hosting business of building a front-end tool, which makes my life easier and easier for me to make custom analyses,” Kavilanz said.
WarnerMedia will continue to give access to the tool to almost everyone in ad sales, as well as the creatives who make the branded content campaigns. Nearly 500 people have been trained on the data tool.
“Democratization of insights is the approach we’ve taken here,” Kavilanz said. “We think that’s why we’ve seen good results in the volume of branded content executions as well as the engagement we’re driving to branded content.”
Having more turnkey data will make branded content production more efficient. Launchpad is introducing different price points, from including pricey Conan O’Brien in branded content all the way down to smaller influencers where data shows a strong overlap between WarnerMedia’s audience and a brand’s audience. Animation can also be produced at different budgets. And full packages across social media and addressable TV give brands more distribution points and scale.
“When we put all that analysis into one view, it allows us to more efficiently bring in insights – and it makes branded content a lot more scalable for us,” Kavilanz said. “We can bring branded content to many more deals.”