Signal claims industry-first with independent people-based advertising solution

Data management platform provider looks to help brands extend their one-to-one engagement strategy to digital advertising

Data management technology player, Signal, is claiming an Australian first with an independent people-based advertising solution that aims to help brands extend their one-to-one engagement strategy into the digital media realm.

The new addressable media solution is an agnostic technology platform that uses persistent IDs based on a variety of sources such as first-party data, instead of cookies, to target individuals digitally. The concept is similar to the protocols used by social networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter.

Signal has confirmed Coles customer loyalty program, flybuys, as its foundation client, which will use the solution to deliver more meaningful advertising to members.

To spearhead the solution’s rollout, Signal has brought on former Coles flybuys executive, Michael Twomey, as senior vice-president and managing director of its people-based marketing offering. Twomey spent four years at Coles, pioneering an in-house programmatic advertising solution focused on people-based targeting. He also spent two years as head of strategy for Silverpop Asia-Pacific prior to its sale to IBM.

Twomey told CMO the Signal offering allows brands and media buys to connect their own data to both open and closed media channels in order to more effectively target the right consumer.

“Brands have been using email and direct marketing to deliver that one-to-one engagement with customers; now advertisers and media agencies can use the very same approach to provide customers with more relevant advertising across all connected channels,” he said. “The difference between people-based marketing and a programmatic platform is that with programmatic, the ID is typically cookie-based. These can expire, be deleted and batch uploaded.

“People-based advertising has the advantage of an addressable ID, which is persistent and can be activated in real time, and essentially has the reach of both the open and closed platforms.”

Twomey said one of the difficulties he’d found as a marketer trying to personalise the message through programmatic advertising was there wasn’t a persistent identity. Or if there was one, inventory was only available in one platform.

“What we’re doing here is providing the simplicity,” he claimed. “It’s one integrated, people-based marketing platform that allows the marketers to go in and be able to activate their media across all the open and closed platform and focus on people, rather than the guesswork of cookies, which comes with ad tech fraud, inefficiencies and so on.”

Twomey also suggested programmatic has largely been about efficiency in media buying.

“Addressable is about precision, and focusing on people versus cookies,” he said. “When you compare this to Facebook, you can access custom audiences today. What we’re doing with the people-based marketing platform is allowing any marketer or media agency across any open or closed ecosystem. It’s about accessing more addressable reach with simplicity.”

The concept of 'people-based marketing' has its roots in Facebook and its ad serving and measurement platform, Atlas, which launched in 2014 and allows brands to reach people across multiple devices through a collection of insights that make those audiences identifiable.

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