IPG Mediabrands to Combine TV and Mobile Data in New Partnership

Taps Experian to Meld TV Data From Rentrak With Mobile Data From Comscore

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Kristi Argyilan, Mediabrands

Mediabrands, the media agency group at IPG, has tapped the data giant Experian Marketing Services to build a system combining TV data from Rentrak and mobile web browsing data from ComScore.

Rentrak, already a Mediabrands vendor, touts household-level TV data from millions of set-top boxes. ComScore has abundant mobile data. Both will now provide information into Experian, which will match data so that Mediabrands can work with one panel containing data on TV and mobile web use.

"In the same household where someone is watching 'Modern Family,' you also have usage of Morningstar.com or Edmunds.com, which shows a strong tie of people who watch certain TV shows having a particular set of online behavior," said Evan Goldfarb, senior VP-sales at Rentrak.

The goal is to more efficiently plan and ultimately buy TV, web, and mobile ad campaigns. Next steps include adding more data from media owners, clients and other IPG agencies and building a user-friendly interface so day-to-day planners and buyers can glean insights from the system on their own. Mediabrands is in the process of evaluating companies that can build the user interface for the tool, which it's calling Amp 2.0.

Before Amp 2.0, Mediabrands would have had to turn to separate reports from separate data providers to assemble the same insights, said Kristi Argyilan, president of Magna North America, part of the agency network. "It was forcing us to plan in a siloed way."

Melding various databases for ad targeting and measurement in a single platform isn't a new concept. Neither is targeting down to an individual, versus demographic. Keith Camoosa, exec VP and managing director of research and analytics at Mediabrands, compared the potential for better targeting using matched data to "things that have been done in direct and database marketing for years."

"It's the first time Rentrak and Comscore data have been put together and made available," Mr. Camoosa added.

"Comscore and Rentrak could have done this at some point but there was nothing that pushed us together to do it," Mr. Goldfarb said. "Now we have a client pushing us together and also paying us to do so."

Executives declined to disclose terms of the deal. "It makes Mediabrands the agency client with whom we're doing the most business," Mr. Goldfarb said. "It's a very expensive venture."

It's also one of the Mediabrands' biggest investments this year, the group said.

The tool builds on work Mediabrands already does with TV and other data from Nielsen. "The visibility that gave us in terms of how we can see individual media tactics impacting purchasing decisions was powerful, but the ability to use it across more of our capabilities and across more clients was limited," said Ms. Argyilan. "Nielsen is still a key piece, but we [talked about how we] expand it so we have a data stack that operates like a single source."