Microsoft: What Makes Its Collaboration With Roku 'So Important'

Roku in May announced a partnership with Microsoft to use search data in which the company will match its first-party data on OneView, the company’s streaming advertising platform, with Microsoft Audience Intelligence using data from more than 7 billion Bing searches monthly.

Microsoft conducted several years of TV attribution research and found that online shoppers are more likely to learn about a brand or product through TV ads than by searching online or through word-of-mouth recommendations, a Microsoft spokesperson told Search & Performance Marketing Daily in an email.

“If 6 of 10 users who shop online spend up to 4 hours during a typical day watching TV (Global Web Index survey), that’s a fairly large chunk of time in which advertisers can influence user behavior in their TV commercials,” the spokesperson wrote. “We got curious and analyzed TV logs within minutes of an ad airing, seeking to understand user search behavior patterns before and after the ad airs.”

The data came in at fairly high levels, but it was at the query level, by the minute and based on a time-stamp of the ad airing.

“What we found is that, for retailers running TV ads, search is often the net that captures the newly generated consumer interest,” the spokesperson wrote. “Users who are exposed to a retailer’s TV ad retain not just a general awareness for the brand, but a specific understanding of the content they viewed, executing searches that specifically referenced the product and creative information featured in the spots.”

The two companies will explore ways toconsistently measure across channels, which historically has been a barrier for marketers in “truly” doing cross-channel planning and execution, according to Microsoft.

Roku and Microsoft will explore how TV advertising -- both linear and streaming -- impacts online searches and the interaction with native advertising.

Microsoft expects that the “strong synergies between TV and online search and now native will continue as people resonate more and more with brands and products that they’re exposed to in the CTV spots. That’s what makes this collaboration so important.”

Advertisers will continue to invest in connected television (CTV), so being able to show what users do with that information will become critical to driving successful media strategies.

“This will allow Roku and Microsoft to solve a fundamental challenge for clients,” the Microsoft spokesperson wrote. “As the digital measurement ecosystem becomes more challenging in a post-cookie world, finding unique and reliable ways to connect users across channels and devise will continue to serve as a differentiator for both Roku and Microsoft.”

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