Ad tech firm Simulmedia ties TV spots to purchases

Originally posted in Reuters

Oct 31 (Reuters) - Advertising company Simulmedia said it can now tie TV commercials to purchases by using data from set-top boxes to help marketers reach specific, more defined audiences.

“We are measuring the delivery of a TV spot against millions of people and, on an anonymous basis, what purchases occurred when they saw the ad,” said Dave Morgan, the founder and CEO of Simulmedia, who also started the online behavioral targeting firm Tacoda and ad serving network Real Media.

Simulmedia is partnering with Nielsen Catalina Solutions which tracks retail purchases. Several other firms, including AOL’s Adap.TV and AudienceXpress, are also using data to help advertisers make better TV buying choices.

Their efforts can help chief marketing officers determine whether advertising spending directly boosted sales or raised awareness of a product or service.

“There is a tremendous appetite in the industry to make your TV advertising smarter and data is a part of that,” said Melissa Keller, executive vice president integrated investments at Havas.

“What Simulmedia can do is activate your first party data and match it to TV ad exposures.”

Typically advertisers purchase television time based on demographics: for example, women 25 to 54. Simulmedia helps narrow that range, by targeting women who might be interested in buying a car. Using set-top box data and information from regional retailers, the company also helps determine a commercial’s effectiveness.

In one example, Simulmedia worked with Choice Hotels International in a bid to get more of their customers to book with the hotel online.

Robert McDowell, senior vice president ofmarketingand distribution at Choice Hotels, said the company partnered with Simulmedia for two campaigns using set top box viewing and third party data to build a target demographic, in this case, business travels.

“We worked with them to purchase TV inventory to reach this target audience,” he said adding that Choice Hotels ran spots on both cable and TV networks. The ultimate goal was to get more people to book travel on

While McDowell didn’t reveal the amount spent on the campaign he said the results were strong.

“It outperformed some of Choice’s other traditional TV buys by as much as 20 percent or more in some cases,” he said. (Reporting by Jennifer Saba in New York; Editing by David Gregorio)

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