NEW YORK: Digital media owners measure audiences, and optimise spend, in their own ways, meaning that media planning requires a certain amount of repetition, but IPG Mediabrands believes it has come up with a solution that allows it to define audiences across platforms.

Speaking to AdExchanger, Arun Kumar, the holding company’s data and technology chief explained that the time-consuming replication of campaigns across walled gardens was damaging his team’s agility.

“I can’t keep asking my teams to set up every campaign three or four or six times,” Kumar said. “I need to [be able to] set it up once, fix the parameters and connect into all of the platforms.”

Within IPG, Kumar looks after the performance agency Reprise as well as Cadreon, a programmatic hub. It was on top of a Cadreon tool that the new system was built. Unity appeared earlier this year as a tool to optimise programmatic buying across different platforms and exchanges.

As a result of this efficiency, IPG integrated Unity – which AdExchanger notes is still in development – with more platforms, including its own internal data stack, AMP; and walled gardens such as Google, Facebook, and Amazon.

“There’s a lot of moaning about the walled gardens, but if you look at it from their perspective, each has something really rich and quite unique … The objective is not to commoditize them, but to make it easier for us to leverage their strengths.”

The new platform, he said, is an attempt to connect all of the disparate parts of the ecosystem while allowing Mediabrands to use its own definition of audiences across platforms.

“Today, planning defines an audience and then buyers redefine that audience in different ways across platforms,” he added. “We’re trying to bring the audience piece upfront. Whether it’s Cadreon or UM, all [agencies] have the same understanding of the audience.”

However, the technology is not yet widely available. Kumar told the news site that the holding group uses the tech in bespoke cases, though he did not divulge how many clients were using it or how much had been spent through it. For this reason, it is difficult to assess the effectiveness of the technology from a distance.

Kumar contended that speed, and therefore efficiency, is down to the seamlessness of the system on which people work. The new tech “enables us to learn faster. Because we learn faster, the campaigns typically perform far better.”

Yet the data from each walled garden, he admitted, would remain closed off. “We’re not using Facebook data to target across Google. We’re optimizing within walled gardens.”

Recently, it has been suggested that silos of data behind walled gardens have led to an increased threat of ad-fraud, a problem that unified measurement could help to stem.

Sourced from AdExchanger,; additional content by WARC staff