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Q&A With Greg Jackson, Chief Data Officer, Everyday Health Inc. on Cross-Platform Advertising

March 17, 2014 | By DCN

This Q&A is part of OPA’s “Three on Three” series where we ask three industry executives the same three questions on a topic to uncover actionable insights… If you want to learn more, keep an eye out on our site for more interviews. Today’s Three on Three interview is with Greg Jackson, Chief Data Officer, Everyday Health Inc. on the subject of cross-platform advertising.

Greg Jackson HeadshotQ: What is the biggest hurdle in creating, selling and delivering cross-platform advertising initiatives?

A:The biggest challenge in cross-platform communication is the accurate and timely linking of users’ attributes across devices. Many publishers have the capability to personalize an experience or target advertising to specific segments within a single platform. However, without a mechanism to identify the same user as they migrate between devices, the continuity of content and advertising messaging, as well as, measurement is lost.

At Everyday Health, user registration provides the foundation for our cross-channel attribution. With over 65 million users and a third of all US physicians registered on our properties, we are able to bring together an individual’s activity and interests to provide a seamless targeting platform for content and marketing.

Similar to Pandora personalizing a music experience, Everyday Health personalizes health content. An Everyday Health registered user specifies their initial health interests, and our content personalization engine begins customizing their experience on site and in newsletters, regardless of the access device. As a user provides feedback into what they like or don’t like, the targeting algorithm becomes further refined for a better, more relevant experience that delivers higher engagement.

The same applies to the user targeting capabilities we provide our advertising partners. As a user migrates between devices, our registration data and shared ad serving platform, facilitate the continuity of a marketer’s campaign. More importantly, we are able to measure the impact of those campaigns on a user’s offline behavior for true ROI measurement.

All of this is made possible by a singular data platform that provides a holistic view of a user’s interests and activities and a capacity to leverage that information in real-time across platforms. At Everyday Health, we have invested well over $100 million to aggregate and engage our registered audience with personalized content and marketing because relevancy matters.

Q: Describe one of your recent or forthcoming cross-platform advertising campaigns that you think is particularly innovative or successful.

A:We believe that every digital campaign is a cross-platform campaign regardless of whether it’s intended or not. Users will access content whenever, wherever and on whatever device they want and it is our job as digital publishers and marketers to migrate our messaging across these platforms. We deliver most campaigns to the target user agnostic to platform, instead optimizing for engagement and offline impact.

Everyday Health has been delivering cross-platform solutions in digital for over ten years, and are now beginning a new cross-platform integration between digital and TV. We have matched our health audience to set-top box data to better understand the TV programming that specific user segments are watching. We are now working with a major pharmaceutical company to concentrate their TV marketing to those stations and programs where their target audience over-indexes. While 1:1 addressable TV at scale is still developing, this new audience-centric approach across TV and digital platforms will amplify the media dollar impact of both channels and deliver ROI improvement.

Q: How do you approach the cross-platform sale organizationally?

A:Our sales team is solution oriented, not aligned by channel. We understand that a marketer’s key objective is to inform and motivate their target audience to take action. It’s our responsibility to know our audience, provide engaging solutions across devices, and then optimize delivery based on the real behavior impact each is having. To be successful at this, we cannot be constrained by channel silos but instead leverage the best delivery mechanism for driving consumers to take action.

As audiences become more mobile, marketers are beginning to acknowledge the need for cross-platform buys. The channel specific agencies, budgets, and strategies are beginning to converge and our investment in audience, data and platform will insure we can successfully support their objectives for the future.

Greg Jackson is the Chief Data Officer for Everyday Health. As CDO, Jackson is responsible for establishing data acquisition and utilization strategies for the firm and he is directly responsible for the company’s Precision Health Data Institute. Jackson also oversees Health Reach, the company’s off-portfolio targeted media solution. Prior to joining Everyday Health, Jackson served as President and CMO of Fathead. He has 20+ years’ experience in operations management and direct marketing, with a focus on cross-channel marketing, user engagement and lifetime value optimization, and audience monetization.

Note: This Q&A is part of OPA’s “Three on Three” series where we ask three industry executives the same three questions on a topic to uncover actionable insights.

Also in this series:

Q&A with Rachelle Considine, President Future US, on Cross-Platform Advertising

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