Samba TV to help brands with viewers who skip TV ads

Samba TV unveiled at CES this year a new audience targeting platform that enables marketers to leverage Samba TV’s viewership data on TV audiences for their digital and cross-platform campaigns. Samba says its platform will help bolster media campaigns by offering a holistic view of the audience across devices and advertising channels, enhancing marketer’s ability to granularly target TV audiences away from the TV set.

“There’s a disconnect between media consumed on TV, DVR, and even in the OTT streaming space and how other media channels are being consumed today,” said Chris Squire, Samba TV’s senior director of products. “With Samba’s technology, we can actually bridge that gap. We can provide this service to our media partners both on the measurement side and the targeting side.”

Samba claims to have the largest TV data footprint, with “the broadest representation in the industry,” thanks to proprietary ACR technology embedded in 12 smart TV brands ranging from Sony, Sharp, Element, Westinghouse, Seiki and others in Europe. Samba TV collects troves of TV viewership across 14 million households in the US.

One of the central theses of the new product is to use TV audience data to inform digital advertising targeting, in order to better reach viewers who are becoming increasingly hard to reach in a linear TV environment, thanks to things like DVRs, ad-skipping and smartphones.

“The targeting on television is very broad,” Squire said. “There’s no guarantee in television to only show the ads to that specific audience.” To address this, Samba says it can help marketers create digital segments of TV viewers. So for example, if a brand running a campaign targeting soccer moms who drink Margaritas and who watch basketball games on linear TV, Samba’s data and platform might help the brand better reach that segment across other digital platforms.

“We can generate all of those profiles digitally and ensure that people who watched that game – and were possibly already exposed to that TV spot – and then build that digital segment for the market to offer the supplement message over the course of the next few days,” Squire said.

The audience targeting platform is comprised of two products: one that offers up the TV viewership data for marketers to use for things like media planning, advertising measurement and for developing target audience segments; and another that essentially imports those segments to programmatic demand-side platform (DSPs) for digital campaigns. Squire said that data can be used by marketers for things like extending a TV campaign to digital and re-targeting specific TV audiences on digital devices.

“As folks want to evolve their media plan and piggy back on the media investment they already spend in television, we can get much more granular by enabling those marketers to reach the ideal audience that’s consuming the specific content that they want to engage with, or have been previously exposed to their messaging on OTT, CTV, linear and DVR content,” Squire said. “You have one audience, one consumer, regardless of media choice, whether it’s on the TV, the mobile device or the iPad.”

The audience targeting platform, which is labeled as “self-serve” is basically an extension of Samba’s popular retargeting solution, with an eye towards optimization. The audience manager tool enables marketers to link their Samba audience segments with whatever DSP they use for digital programmatic campaigns. Squire said the platform currently works with 18 DSPs.

“The platform enables faster turnaround and more transparency in the build out of those custom segments,” Squire said. “Marketing teams can come in and custom define the audience, in real time, while not having to wait in a negotiation or a back and forth. It’s an always on service that can help inform and optimize media plans in how they’re reaching consumers digitally.”
Samba uses visual ACR and other technologies, embedded at the chipset level in a variety of smart TV brands, to track what consumers are watching on their TV sets.

TV audience data products are already available to marketers through advertising solutions offered by operators, comScore and other firms that are extrapolating data from Nielsen panels, but Samba claims its data is unique in that it can track viewership down to the source.

“Samba is able to connect all the content experiences whether it’s an Xbox One, a Fire TV, the native tuner, the Xfinity app, casting content off an Android or iPhone,” Squire said. “That concept of high fidelity TV viewership data is still frankly an outlier in the space.”