Compete and Sister Firm Merge Online and Offline Data

Kantar-owned marketing research firms Compete Inc. and Cannondale Associates are combining data to help brands link the effectiveness of digital campaigns to in-store consumer purchases. Compete’s online consumer research panel of two million viewers will be hitched to its sister company’s ShopperGenetics data platform, which collects info from the loyalty cards of 80 million households, the companies announced yesterday.

Matt Pace, managing director for retail and consumer products for Boston-based Compete, said the data will help Cannondale’s mostly consumer packaged goods industry clients determine which banner ads are producing in-store sales. For instance, whenever a consumer that exists in both databases is exposed to a display ad for potato chips and then buys a product with an associated loyalty card, the purchase will be trackable back to the online campaign, Pace said. The same mechanism applies for purchases linked to SEO/SEM campaigns, e-mail blasts, branded sites, and so on.

“It’s really finally connecting the dots, getting down to actual in-store purchase volumes, amounts spent, loyalty switching, etc.,” Pace said. “Not only can we see how exposure to advertising campaigns last month had an impact…but we can compare that to the consumer’s previous purchase levels of that product.”

Pace said the married data should result in better post-campaign analysis while informing future media planning. “I wouldn’t necessarily think of it as an advertising tool,” he added. “I would think of it as more of an ROI analysis tool.”

The Kantar announcement comes on the heels of other major data-oriented developments for cross-channel marketers. Last week, Nielsen and DataLogix partnered to create household-level online ad targeting using the former’s audience cluster PRIZM data. And last month, Omnicom Media Global announced that it had access to News Corp.’s huge Fox Audience Network database. OMG has integrated the data with its Living Segments audience segmentation system in order to target multichannel messaging based on consumer groups’ shown interests.

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