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OMMA and MediaPost advertising conference: “Mad Men” becoming “Math Men”

At the one-day audience targeting conference held at the Hyatt Regency Century Plaza in Los Angeles on July 23, Bob Ivins, Chief Data Officer of Mindshare, joked that in his job he works on raising the math SAT scores of his company, turning advertising “Mad Men” into “Math Men.”

Ivins went on to ask the audience for a show of hands of how many people had gone into creative fields to avoid math.

While this was said with good humor, the bottom line of the all-day conference was that collecting, analyzing and utilizing data is very important to the success of digital (and offline) advertising. In fact, this current situation was referred to as a data arms race.

The conference was put on by OMMA (the magazine of Online Media, Marketing and Advertising) and MediaPost with sponsorship from TruSignal, ebay, Research Now, Adbeat and V12Group.

Conference speakers and panels, featuring ad buyers as well as ad sellers, ranged over a variety of topics. Many conference participants talked about the relevancy of content. When ad content is more relevant to the consumer, the response to ads is better and less disruptive.

And for an ad to be relevant, the audience must be known.

This brings us to the emerging technology options of tracking consumers’ online behaviors across platforms and presenting relevant ads based on that behavior, often connected to the location where the consumers currently are online and offline.

For example, have you ever wondered how you are shown an ad for a product on one site, and then you move to another site where you are shown an ad for the same product? Yes, you are being tracked.

On the other hand, advertisers can set frequency caps on the number of times an ad is repeated to the same person. Perhaps the cap is only 4 times for the same ad in one online session. After you have seen that ad the fourth time on whatever device you happen to be on at the moment, you won’t see the ad again. From a consumer point of view, this frequency cap can be good news.

Susan Bidel, Senior Analyst, Forrester, warned of the tradeoff when using outside data warehouse software companies (Data Management Platforms) for your company’s different silos of data. While using an outside DMP can be faster and quicker, you are sharing your data with a company who also might work with your competitors.

You can assume your actual data would not be shared with your competitors. But, Bidel explained, what the DMP learns from your data manipulation can impact what the DMP recommends to your competitors about data manipulation. Thus Bidel strongly suggested you protect your own data.

Conference discussions also included privacy issues, with Stephanie Bauer Marshall, Director, Precision Market Insights, Verizon, talking about Verizon’s focus on protecting the privacy of consumers.

Other issues concerned click fraud and finding a better measure than the click methodology.

In a panel on multi-screens, moderator Andrew Solmssen, Managing Director, POSSIBLE, talked about a) better customer experiences, b) telling a story across platforms, and c) targeting the right consumers.

Click here to read more about the conference.

© 2014 Miller Mosaic LLC

Phyllis Zimbler Miller is a digital marketer. Learn more about her on LinkedIn at

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