The role of the data fusion in actionable media targeting in the 1990's

Date of publication: September 1, 1990

Author: Sarah O'Brien


This paper deals with the fusion of two of the largest databases in Britain. The Broadcasters Audience Research Board (BARB) is the standard measurement of television audiences in Britain, with a panel size of 8 homes. The Target Group Index is the largest product and media survey in Britain with a sample of 24 adults per annum. The provision of an enhanced targeting facility such as a fusion of these two databases would offer could radically change the face of media buying in the 1990’s. Extensive exploratory and validatory work has been conducted to ensure that the fusion methodology provides the closest possible matchings, optimising the use of variables common to both databases, and balancing the distance measurement with the donor frequency. Once these findings were validated there are a number of ways in which the fused database could be used in day to day media planning. These include analyses of viewing patterns, conversion levels and assessments of coverage by product categories. The findings indicate that targeting television advertising by product field users can be very efficient and add a new dimension to media buying. The success of this fusion is a confirmation that it can be applied to market research data and should lead the way forward to how other databases are collected and made to work together.

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