LONDON – Legacy media needs to join digital in using census-level data for audience targeting and attribution, according to Irwin Gotlieb, Chairman of WPP’s GroupM. “If we look at the effect of our media campaigns and try to do proper attribution on them, we have to do it, we have to get legacy media on a census level as well,” Gotlieb says in an interview with

Within the digital domain, everything is census-level data. “We have event-level data, cookie data, all those things, and they are pinned to individual profiles,” says Gotlieb.

Today, a single Nielsen respondent is representative “of circa 50,000 people in the population of the United States,” Gotlieb continues. “You can’t do attribution on that basis. It’s not granular enough.”

With truly census level data on TV, marketers can “do the kind of analytics to join the dots between what’s accomplished by digital media and legacy media and create the complete story,” says Gotlieb. “If you’re talking about census-level data as it relates to television, that’s comScore today, once it gets all the set-top box data rolled up is all you need.”

The same thing is needed on the sales side, according to Gotlieb, “whether it’s Kroger’s data or Walmart’s data or Nielsen Catalina, all those data sets are census level data.”

Aggregating all of the data provides insights into “what is an individual view on TV, what do they buy, where do they surf, what do they search, what are their social behaviors, etc.,” Gotlieb explains. “And you begin to understand what’s relevant to that individual, what moves them to buy a product and how effective your marketing is.”

This interview is part of our series “The Road to CES,” a lead-up series in advance of CES 2017. The series is presented by FreeWheel. Please find more videos from the series here.