From Digiday Target: Sometimes The Client Does Not Believe The Data Says Media Kitchen's Herman

Digiday Target ConferenceAt Digiday Target yesterday, it was all about, well, targeting - and harnessing data to drive consumers, conversions and awareness. Audience targeting and addressable media are the new standards/industry buzzwords.

Underscoring the targeting opportunity were members of the "The Elephant in The Room: Who IS The Target?" panel which included Jim Keyt of Unilever, Darren Herman of The Media Kitchen, Scott Knoll of Datran Media and John Nardone, CEO, [x+1].

Herman brought recent examples of his agencies targeting challenges with clients including how MDC Partners' Media Kitchen/Varick Media works with partners like Datran Media and x+1.

"We spend so much time planning because if we screw up when we go to market, it's $30-$100 million that is wasted.

In the digital space, ComScore and Nielsen have always owned where media planners go first and, historically, do the buys off that. But, that's shifted and become direction. I think the biggest "a-ha moment" that agencies are having is that we're sitting on so much cookie-level data, and we need to illuminate those cookies and use that for insights. That's really where it gets interesting because then you have exposure - how many impressions you have served, how many engaged and done an acquisition. By mining the data we're already sitting on - whether in Atlas or our data warehouse or wherever - it's about illuminating that. Most agencies don't have the infrastructure to do that. But, a lot of our partners like x+1 or Datran are building those infrastructures to help us with what's going on within our own data that we already have.

We did an immersion day for a [fashion-oriented] client at their offices in NYC. One of my staff went to their MySpace page and literally took screenshots of pictures of all their fans and put it up on this huge board with thousands and thousands of fans. And then we brought this board in to show our client the fans. They said, 'no way. these kinds of people cannot be our fans.' We brought them to MySpace and showed them that literally this was their brand page and these were their fans. Their targets for the sexy print magazines that there in is night and day different than what's going on online. Or, maybe it's the same but the brand perception [by the client] is different than what was really playing out."

Also, Herman suggested that data sets look different to different silos of the agency business:

"It could mean something to each one of us but all of us are looking from a different view - especially giving it to a media agency which is very different than giving it to a creative agency. And within the media agency, there's a research group which is a lot different than media planners or buyers. We all look at data in different ways and our partners help us make the data as actionable as possible depending on who is looking at the data."

On Datran Aperture:

"We did a solid integration with Datran for one of our cosmetics clients. We came in and showed our client the Aperture system and they didn't want to believe it. They just did not want to believe that these were the people purchasing online to the point where we actually did a survey on the website which validated what Datran was showing."

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