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PlaceIQ Partners With comScore On Cross-Channel, Location Ad Effectiveness

The expanded alliance between PlaceIQ and comScore is meant to "unify" all the advertising touchpoints from mobile to TV that help lift store visits, says PlaceIQ's Duncan McCall.

PlaceIQ and comScore are rolling out a joint analytics product that promises to measure lift in retail visits resulting from TV, mobile and desktop advertising.

“PlaceIQ PVR powered by comScore,” as the product is called, is aimed at brands and their agencies as a tool to understand the complete impact of their advertising on generating foot traffic to physical locations whether they’re retailers, automotive dealerships, restaurants, or any business that has a door for a customer to open and walk through.

While PlaceIQ has primarily concentrated on demand-side, comScore’s involvement means something for the publishers too. “As the sell side struggles with issues such as viewability and whether an ad placement was seen, this new offering will be able to prove the value of their inventory and its ability to drive consumers to visit brick-and-mortar locations,” Anne Hunter, SVP, Advertising Impact for comScore, told GeoMarketing.

“Overall, PlaceIQ PVR powered by comScore is about solving for ad effectiveness across all devices,” said PlaceIQ CEO Duncan McCall in an interview. “It’s more than just being able to target someone near a store. It’s about being able to have a fuller understanding of the consumer based on their visitation patterns and matching that with the media they consume to show what ads ‘worked’ and which ones didn’t.”

The role of location data as the “new cookie” thanks to the “always-on” connected consumer who has their smartphone with them whether they’re walking into a store or on the couch watching TV has presented a great deal of opportunities and challenges to  analytics platform companies like comScore and PlaceIQ.

Both comScore, which also received TV audience insights via its acquisition of Rentrak in early 2016, have steadily launched new features and products over the years to provide better visibility on cross-device ad effectiveness.

“I wouldn’t say it’s 100 percent solved, but we’re getting closer,” McCall said.

In explaining how it works, McCall and Hunter said that ad exposure data from comScore is matched to location data from PlaceIQ. With those complementary elements in place, comScore and PlaceIQ can then measure the overall and individual impact of campaign components such as TV networks, digital publishers, dayparts and placements.

On top of measuring store visitation lift, PlaceIQ PVR powered by comScore also provides clients with a detailed picture of the consumers who saw a location-based ad.

This feature extends beyond demographics alone, to include advanced audience descriptors such as likelihood to engage with other brands across different shopping categories, McCall said. With this information, clients can understand the broader interests and affinities of a target audience and tailor future messaging strategies across channels.

As for viewability, comScore can further integrate such a measurement to account only for digital impressions that have an opportunity to be seen, as is the standard in TV, Hunter said. “This viewable lift data provides marketers with an apples-to-apples comparison of lift across platforms and the ability to optimize spend accordingly,” she added.

“Auto dealerships, restaurants, travel providers and retailers all have the challenge of connecting the dots between ad exposures and in-store foot traffic,” said Steve Ahlberg, SVP, advertising products, comScore, in a statement. “Today’s launch gives marketers access to the neutral, third-party data they need to make those connections, and to ultimately optimize their marketing mix. comScore is excited to partner with PlaceIQ, a premier provider of advanced location data and analytics, to launch this product, which is available to our clients today.”

PlaceIQ PVR powered by comScore follows what has continues to be is a fairly aggressive rollout of analytics products by PlaceIQ over the past three years.

The company’s most recent tool up to now has been LandMark, which was meant to better position PlaceIQ more squarely within the attribution wars currently being waged by location-based platforms and insights providers. PlaceIQ PVR powered by comScore is another step in that process.

PlaceIQ launched LandMark at the end of last year to complement its existing tools, such as the Place Visit Rate (PVR), which provides “a real-world KPI” that measures in-store ROI.

As McCall has described it, LandMark can help narrow a brand’s focus on customers it can reach more easily, as it did with Lyft’s Taco Bell campaign this past summer.

“PlaceIQ PVR powered by comScore is a significant addition to our large portfolio of location-driven product innovations,” McCall said. “It unifies our sophisticated approach for real-world attribution with comScore, the industry’s trusted choice for impartial measurement in the digital realm. It provides a powerful way to quantify engagement and justify investments. With it, marketers get a better understanding of how all forms of media impact foot traffic, the audience affinities behind those interactions, critical insight into viewability for digital campaigns, and the ability to optimize cross-channel campaigns to drive additional visitation.”