Rapt, Publicis Team on Analytics for Media Buyers

Rapt is branching out from its traditional focus on publisher-side yield management to offer inventory and price forecasting tools for media buyers. The firm has teamed with Publicis to introduce Rapt Information Services, which it says will help marketers assign value to digital ad inventory by projecting likely demand based on historic data.

Publicis’s media operations helped design the service to appeal to ad buyers, according to Tim Hanlon, EVP of Publicis-owned digital consultancy Denuo. Publicis divisions including Starcom MediaVest Group, ZenithOptimedia, and Digitas will have access to the Rapt Information Services data, but the relationship is not exclusive.

“In order for this to work it has to be attractive to all agencies and buyers and sellers, not just us,” Hanlon said. “The process of media is much more sophisticated and data-driven than ever before, and we’re trying to take progressive action on being at the front of that curve.”

Rapt describes the product as a needed data complement to the traditional traffic and reach-based information that has long dominated digital media buying decisions.

“The more data that everyone has the better off everybody will be,” said Ben Crain, VP of marketing and alliances for Rapt. “Right now the digital media market both on the buy side and sell side is very opaque. There is not a common understanding of what these assets are worth, and that has an impact on the confidence that marketers have in the space.”

Publicis claims to represent $1.5 billion in “cross-Internet” ad spending across all clients. “Efficiency alone makes a relationship with somebody like Rapt a worthwhile endeavor,” said Denuo’s Hanlon.

Rapt Information Services is in beta, with a general launch expected sometime within the second quarter of the year. Access will be based on subscriptions.

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