For the first time, Volkswagen of America is testing the addressable advertising space. In a deal orchestrated by its media shop, WPP’s MediaCom, the carmaker
placed ads throughout the month of March on an array of TV networks via DirecTV’s national addressable ad platform to promote its spring sales event, “Springtoberfest.”
Addressable ads can be delivered to individual households or clusters of homes in a bid to achieve more precise targeting. In VW’s case, the DirecTV ad campaign was designed to target households with drivers in the market to purchase a new car. That subset of the DirecTV universe is estimated to be between 1.2 million and 1.7 million homes.
According to Dave Fasola, managing partner, MediaCom, market research data on expiring car lease agreements was used as the primary source for identifying the homes to target in the DirecTV campaign. While auto companies often blanket the entire country with ads, only about 2% to 5% of car owners are looking to buy a new vehicle at any given time, Fasola estimated.
Under the plan worked out by MediaCom, each household was exposed to a minimum of five VW ads in order for the campaign to be optimally effective.
Results of the campaign should be in by early summer. Over the next several months, the client, agency and DirecTV will collect and analyze data on viewing the ads and how many new cars were purchased by consumers in the homes targeted during the addressable campaign.
“This is really about achieving a balance between brand building and targeting those that are ready to buy,” Fasola said.
“Television has always been an important part of our marketing mix, and it is critical that we evolve our approach to the channel with technology advancements,” said Raashee Gupta Erry, media and connections planning manager at Volkswagen of America.
Paul Guyardo, chief revenue and marketing officer for DirecTV, said the satellite carrier’s addressable ad platform “delivers the power of a 30-second TV ad with the precision targeting of the Internet.” The service, he added, “delivers highly targeted reach without the waste of a traditional television ad buy.”