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Digital Transformation Media Measurement Future of TV

NBCU makes key ad buying & measurement updates, enhances shoppable TV


By Kendra Barnett, Associate Editor

March 22, 2022 | 6 min read

NBCUniversal is publicizing a range of updates to its advertising and commerce offerings, including programmatic enhancements on Peacock, cross-channel ad targeting tools, new third-party media measurement partners and a seamless way for consumers to shop from their TV screens in real-time.

NBC building facade in NYC

NBCU has unveiled a smattering of new ad updates at its annual developer conference / Gary Ruiz

At its second annual developer conference, One22, NBCU today announced a handful of adtech, data and media measurement updates to its capabilities. The changes aim to help advertisers find addressable audiences more seamlessly and in more places across the NBCU ecosystem. They also position NBCU as a formidable player in the cookieless, first-party data-centered future.

Here’s what you need to know:

Key announcements:

● New commerce integrations: NBCU and Comcast are expanding their partnership by integrating NBCUniversal Checkout into Comcast’s various entertainment platforms. What this means in practicality is that if a Comcast customer sees a product within NBCU programming, they can say, “Shop,” into their Comcast Xfinity remote and make a purchase then and there using NBCUniversal Checkout. The company says that NBCUniversal Checkout, which is already integrated throughout the company’s One Platform, has helped make shoppable advertising twice as effective as non-shoppable, traditional ads. As consumer shopping habits shift increasingly toward digital and integrated media experiences, integrations like these are sure to streamline buying for consumers while improving conversion rates for brands.

Identity and first-party data updates: NBCU plans to expand privacy-safe first-party targeting to more than 230m NBCU IDs through NBCUnified, the company’s new identity solution. The company noted that tech companies are no longer the sole gatekeepers of consumers’ first-party data and that platforms are catching up. With new challenges posed by Apple’s privacy-centric iOS updates, marketers need expanded access to first-party datasets to reach audiences where they are.

Last week, Dentsu was announced as the first agency partner for NBCUnified, giving the holding company unmatched access to NBCU’s first-party data for integration and ad activation purposes.

New ad options on Peacock: Following the rollout of some programmatic tools last October, NBCU is expanding programmatic buying on Peacock as well as programmatic guaranteed activation of audiences whose data is tied to NBCUnified. As part of this effort, the company is rolling out new Peacock digital signal processor (DSP) integrations with a range of industry players, including Amazon, Adobe, Samsung DSP, Viant, Xandr, Amobee, Beeswax and private marketplaces. Integrations will also come to Peacock linear TV programming and live events. In essence, TV and streaming advertisers will be able to automate guaranteed and direct media buys across the Peacock platform using the ad partner or partners of their choosing.

Additionally, the company in April will debut The Harmonizer, a tool available to Peacock advertisers that allows them to determine which ad creative to serve to which audiences, based on data insights like viewer behavior, program genre and viewer tenure. The new feature can be employed across Solo, Binge and Pause ads.

New cross-platform advertising tools: Advertisers will now be able to easily buy media across a range of platforms through iSpot viewership as part of NBCU’s new partnership with the TV adtech firm. NBCU also plans to integrate its first-party data and identity platform, NBCUnified, with OpenAP’s OpenID to offer marketers a broader pool of first-party data and expand their reach across platforms.

The deal with OpenAP promises deduplicated reach and frequency across platforms and publishers through OpenAP’s XPm framework — which enables marketers to share campaign exposure data with third-party measurement companies in a privacy-centric way. These updates mean that advertisers will have new ways to reach target audiences on whatever channel or device they’re on — and be able to easily analyze the impacts of their efforts.

Measurement enhancements: The media and entertainment giant announced that, in 2022, marketers will be able to tie NBCU identity data with measurement for an improved look at media performance — which is especially needed within the streaming ecosystem. After issuing an RFP for measurement innovations last August — following a scandal that saw TV ratings and measurement mainstay Nielsen stripped of its credibility and Media Rating Council accreditation — NBCU is back with new measurement deals inked with a range of partners.

The company announced eight new additions to its Certified Measurement Program. Conviva has signed on as a streaming and digital measurement partner. has become a national contender for offering a cross-channel measurement currency; Comscore has become a local market contender. As far as audience verification goes, NBCU has brought on DoubleVerify, MOAT and Integral Ad Science as certified measurement partners. Innovid and FreeWheel have been made ad serving partners, and is approved as an ad cataloging partner. The company noted that Nielsen is not currently a certified measurement partner as its forthcoming Nielsen One cross-channel framework is not yet ready for evaluation.

New RFP automations for media planners and buyers: NBCU is teaming up with both Salesforce and Mediaocean to bring industry players new tools for developing, managing and automating RFPs across digital and linear TV. Through the new deal, agencies will be able to submit a single RFP across linear and digital environments — it will automatically be added to NBCU’s proposal pipeline, helping to speed response time and efficiency. The new automation functions will be added to One Platform and made available to media planners and buyers of all types later this year.

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