Mar 20 2024
Media Coverage

NBCU’S New Approach to Measurement — Everything To Know From Its One24 Tech Conference

VideoAmp is NBCU’s currency of choice for this year’s upfront.

NBCUniversal has winnowed down its number of measurement partners for this year’s upfront, highlighting VideoAmp as its currency of choice, said John Lee, chief data officer, advertising and partnerships, NBCU.

In the past, NBCU has shared a roster of nearly 40 certified measurement partners for use in dealmaking with the media company, including Comscore, iSpot and VideoAmp as certified currency partners. Now, Lee said, NBCU is differentiating between that extensive list of certified measurement and currency partners (which it will continue to enable business with) and a select few to incorporate into “One Platform Total Measurement.”

The scaled-down set that comprises “One Platform Total Measurement” includes VideoAmp for audience reach, EDO to measure consideration based on its search activity metrics and mobile data platform Kochava for business outcomes data. The three partners form the base of what Lee described as an effort to make advertising with NBCU more responsive in real time, like buying with social and digital platforms, but “One Platform Total Measurement” includes a total of seven curated partners to round out the full image of a campaign.

“You can kind of think of it as there’s two levels of status” differentiated by the measurement partners endorsed in the “Total Measurement” list versus the rest of NBCU’s previously certified measurement providers, said Lee. The seven companies are also those NBCU has selected to integrate datasets into its tech and audience data stacks. VideoAmp, in particular, will be integrated into NBCU’s first-party data offering for audience-based planning and measurement.

“In the past, we’ve spent a lot of time on things like alternative currency, to now being more focused on audience, so ‘One Platform Total Measurement’ allows you to take one audience that you’ve transacted on, whether that’s in just digital or data-driven linear or our cross-platform optimizer, and be able to see how that audience is rolling through the funnel,” said Lee, comparing the capability to buying with Google, Meta or Amazon, where advertisers “log into one place, see all the reporting and it’s standard.”

In addition to NBCU’s new approach to measurement, here are additional highlights from its One24 tech conference:

Biddable Olympics

NBCU is making Olympics inventory available for biddable, private marketplace transactions through the Trade Desk.

While advertisers still need to strike broader deals for guaranteed access to the Olympics, “the idea of democratizing or opening up access to small- and medium-sized agencies and businesses is really important for our business,” said Ryan McConville, executive VP, advertising platforms and operations at NBCU. “A company like Meta does business with hundreds of thousands of [advertisers], and typically TV companies have been more concentrated in who they do business with.”

Over the past year, NBCU has grown its number of advertisers by 40% because of programmatic access to inventory, and over 30% of inventory on Peacock is bought programmatically, said McConville. The idea of access also goes beyond the Olympics to live events in general, of which McConville said Peacock will have during 300 days in 2024.

New Olympics formats

Beginning with the Olympic and Paralympic Games, NBCU is launching a new shoppable ad unit that will prompt viewers to order snacks for the movie or live sports event they’re about to tune into. The “Virtual Concessions” ad format will prompt the viewer with a QR code that will direct them to a delivery service as well as present a carousel of products. NBCU is in market seeking sponsors for the format, which could include delivery subscriptions such as Grubhub or Uber Eats, as well as restaurants that offer their own delivery services.

NBCU also announced the expansion of its “Must Shop TV” commerce formats, which connect viewers directly to checkout pages via QR codes in ad units, to shows including “Love Island USA,” “Southern Charm,” “Summer House,” “Top Chef” and “Winter House.”

For Peacock subscribers, Olympics viewing will also take on a few new forms. Across live coverage, Peacock will curate various multi-panel viewing experiences that can aggregate up to four live events on the screen at once. Some experiences will be oriented for discovery, showing different events airing simultaneously, while others might be able to watch numerous matches from a single event at once or view different camera angles for one event at the same time.

Peacock will also launch an interactive viewing feature in which on-screen commentators will present options to viewers in the transition between events, prompting the audience to select which sport they want to watch next. The feature will also allow fans to save upcoming events in their “My List” library.

Many of the features will bring in brand sponsors, such as a “Medal Standings” tab that tracks the number of medals won by countries.

AI audience segments

NBCU will jump in on an industry trend in using AI to comb its library to match advertisers with the emotional context of its content. The resulting insights, which tag content at the episode level rather than at the show level, were paired with NBCU’s first-party data to create over 300 audience segments for marketers to buy. 

An example is an audience segment around family values, said Lee. AI found connections between episodes of the “Real Housewives” franchise, “Law and Order” and a WWE match that can match both an audience and emotional context the advertiser wants to tap into. 

Source: AdAge