Data Management Platforms & Sports Marketing: A Ready Opportunity for the Taking in the Indian Market

As technological innovation continues to transform the world of sports advertising, Data Management Platforms (DMPs) present a new, revenue yielding, opportunity to create fan-based audience segments.

By: Baldeep Singh, WPP’s Data Alliance, Country Manager, India GroupM’s [m]PLATFORM, Head, Client Development & Data Partnerships, India

Imagine connecting a single sports fan to the number of games they have watched, digital content they consume, place where they reside, organization they work with, online and offline transactions, and any other behavior based on browsing habits—such as intent to purchase. The permutations to create consumer segments are endless, and this opportunity currently exists. Combined with the ability to target media via SMS, display, video through their various devices and screens in real time via programmatic platforms, we can come to understand the consumer as a well-rounded individual.

To give some context, statistical data and market research analysis have always been used to study athlete performance and popularity, in order to gain a larger share of wallet from brands with reinforcement in form of supporting facts and figures. While this practice has evolved over a longer period, and is supported by many technological advances, the formulae to calculate monies have not changed much. We have reached an apex, we are plateauing. We must look to other avenues for capitalizing untouched, valuable data sets: fans and partnerships.

When we try to find sports fans, our ability to seek them is generally out of a myopic view. We tend to look for people either on sports publications online, watching TV content, or live in stadia for offline activities. However, an average sports lover in India consumes other digital content and that unearths untapped advertising opportunities. With the help of DMPs, we can find that an average sports lover also spends time on movies, business, and health related activities. Reaching these users during these other moments capitalizes on beneficial purchasing power. With the help of polygon geo fencing around areas of interest, we can then extract AdID and IDFA from mobile devices for an immersive and rich in-app experience. Finally, to come full circle, we use all this information to reach the specific individual while they are consuming unrelated content, at the right moment via an OTA partner—a targeted, personalized approach.

Although there are many Data Management Platforms in market which allow for the enterprise to manage their CRM first party data and create meaningful audience segments from 3rd party data assets available, GroupM’s [m]PLATFORM is the only DMP that goes above and beyond by adding ad exposure, transactional activities, media consumption and market research data to the equation. [m]PLATFORM allows brands to build more personal and meaningful relationships with sports fans. Additionally, WPP owned Kantar World Panel and TGI, Light Speed Research mobile survey data and IMRB’s iProspect data all come together with countless other attributes to help identify fans at an individual level and find other consumers who resemble them. Finally, WPP’s Data Alliance, a WPP company that supports the Group’s data business, works horizontally with these agencies and others like Wunderman and Ogilvy, to provide resources and data partnerships, build use cases and execute audience insights that help drive these types of opportunities.

Consider one last example of how sponsorship intelligence was improved in 2016 by taking segment data and matching it to Facebook likes, to plan sponsorships for the Olympics. WPP was tasked with helping the client understand how best to appeal to a key segment, as part of the planning process. Without surprise there was a match of 40K between the client’s Segment Data with Context Data (Facebook Likes). The ‘likes’ were mined by segment to understand affinities by page and category.

From the actionable insights mined, it was learned that Athletes/Sports may not be the right place to focus on for content creation. Instead, the focus should shift to the Top Liked category, Music, which represented 11% of all likes. As a result of this shift, the brand was able to tell their live-events partner the top liked artists per segment to incorporate into promotional planning. In appealing to real tastes, the client was eager to understand the tastes of key segments to help in researching alignment with past Olympics and specific sports & athletes for sponsorships and/or ad campaigns for Rio 2016. Context highlighted that all customer segments over indexed in music vs. Sports/Athletes.

Similarly using a Sport Data Management Platform can substantially unearth previously unknown facts about Sports Audiences and allow for finer attribution and thereby enabling agencies to build better communications, dynamic campaigns catered to specific audience subsets and lead to higher ROI’s.

This article was written by Baldeep Singh  for the fifth edition of Sporting Nation In The Making – V, an industry initiative between ESP Properties (the Entertainment & Sports arm of GroupM) and SportzPower (India’s leading provider of sports business news).

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