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Next Gen Audience Based Targeting Comes of Age Activating Emotionally Attached Audiences Changes the Playing Field. Interview with Gary Reisman.



The media industry’s transition into more data driven solutions enables us to get closer to a highly valuable consumer target.  Data ubiquity and modeling capabilities have definitely changed the landscape.  That said, Gary Reisman believes a new approach that adds consumer Emotional Attachment into the process can significantly improve Audience Based targeting – both in the quality of the audiences targeted and ROI resulting from media investments toward those audiences.

Reisman’s company, LEAP Media Investments, is a new type of Audience Development Company.  The company has conceived a way to activate audiences who are intrinsically connected with specific brands and who can be activated in online, social and mobile media and, in advanced-TV planning and buying.

 A patented process, 10 years in the making, LEAP develops “right-brain” data that quantifies the level of emotional attachment a consumer has to a brand, service or product.  The data, when modeled with big-data sets creates scaled, highly responsive audiences that enable more focused upper-funnel brand consideration and purchase.

“It’s widely known that over 75% of our purchase decisions are made based on emotion – meaning the bonds and relationships we have with brands and products yields relevance and meaning that drive us to engage and purchase brands and products.  Today’s demo, behavioral and transactional data simply do not develop audiences “connected” to the brand” Reisman explains. The next generation of audience-based targeting must also add emotion.

Reisman has dedicated his efforts to activating emotional attachment in media. “As a marketer, I saw a huge gap between the brand insight used for strategic positioning and creative development and the less insightful data used for media activation,” he explained. “For example, Walmart may know what drives attachment to their consumers. But when they then go to plan and buy media, they are stuck using ‘left-brain’ behavior and transaction data with some demo overlays  – attributes that do not leverage the brand equity and connections they have with their consumers,” he concluded.

Charlene Weisler: What do you mean by Emotional Attachment?

Gary Reisman: We define emotional attachment as the quantified value of the visceral brand connection a person has to a particular brand. Essentially it is their unwillingness to give up the brand. When quantified, this attachment translates to a person’s level of desire to engage, use or buy the brand or product and it correlates or equates to their brand share, revenue contribution and profitability. It is also a quotient that defines a consumer’s lifetime value to a brand or product.


Charlene Weisler: Why is emotional attachment so important?

Gary Reisman: It’s not just important, it is essential.  We have found that building audiences with increased levels of emotional attachment provide many benefits. Based on case studies, we have found that activating media based on LEAP’s emotional attachment leads to increased ad attentiveness/engagement (consumers are +50% more attentive to the ad message), increased brand advocacy, sharing and potential viral activity (consumers are +43% more likely to share brand messaging across their social channels) plus an increases in sales (consumers are up to 2.5 times more likely to buy) and increased media ROI. 

Charlene Weisler: How does LEAP develop their Audiences?

Gary Reisman: LEAP uses a patented data collection technique that tags thousands of individuals with the level of emotional attachment they have to hundreds of brands and media properties.  Through proper data sharing techniques, tagged individuals are matched with big data houses (DMP’s/DSP’s), then modeled and scaled for insightful strategic planning and audience activation

Our data creates three unique audiences that brands can target – Brand Enthusiasts Audiences – who closely represent those most attached to the brand; Brand Conquest Audiences, those who are moderately attached to your brand or competitive brands, and Brand Expansion Audiences who are the least attached and who offer the least amount of return.

We advise advertisers to reallocate their investment dollars to their two most emotionally attached groups – the Enthusiasts and Conquests.  When this is done, we have seen media ROI increases can be as high as 50-75%. Brands we have directly worked with have seen significant year on year sales growth.

We are also enabling a fusion with Nielsen data so the results can be stewarded through sales contract systems. Our data can also be incorporated into DMPs for planning and DSPs for advanced television online, social and mobile targeting.

Charlene Weisler: So give me an example.

Gary Reisman: Every brand has its own business plan and strategic needs. So a brand like Pepsi can develop and activate media that targets LEAP’s Pepsi Enthusiasts to drive low-hanging fruit sales. Alternatively they can plan and activate the LEAP Pepsi Conquests Audiences to gain more revenue from Pepsi consumers that are in need of a marketing push or Conquest against competitor’s LEAP Conquest audiences to steal share. Of course Pepsi is just one example; LEAP has developed audiences for over 400 brands across 25 categories

Charlene Weisler: Where does LEAP fit in the world of big data?

Gary Reisman: There is simply too much data and it is creating complexity, chaos and additional expense for brands. Also, everyone generally has the same data and is doing the same thing with data. To have a competitive advantage, you need a new approach; a new, more strategic, way to derive enhanced value and insight from that data and most importantly, activate true Audience-Based Targeting in today’s media marketplace.   Overlaying LEAP data provides a powerful, proven lens on the data – determining which data is more important that other data and modeling audiences predicted to engage with the brand.

This article first appeared in Media Village.

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