COLOGNE – It’s taken a few years, but NBCUniversal is seeing audience buying becoming a mainstream choice for more advertisers across product and service categories.

This comes three years after the media company began offering its Audience Targeting Platform during the Upfront negotiating period and after the second Upfront with its Audience Studio suite of data offerings.

“One of the things we found coming out of this year’s upfront is that clients are making audience buying a regular part of their planning process,” Denise Colella, SVP, Advanced Advertising & Product Strategy, NBCU says in an interview with Beet.TV at the DMEXCO advertising and trade show.

Things have gained traction on the audience-buying front after a few slow years following the Upfronts. In the early going, by the time agencies and clients ended their negotiations and then had to figure out who they wanted to target and what data to use, they just weren’t ready to make deals.

This year, NBCU’s audience-buying commitments have tripled in the third quarter because clients have their data and are ready to go.

“So the fact that they’re ready so soon after the Upfront shows us this has become mainstream and a regular part of their buying process,” Colella says.

Having decided to make all of its unsold inventory available through its data products, NBCU saw early uptake by such vertical categories as finance, insurance, automotive and travel.

“But over the past year or so, we’ve seen it expand into all verticals, everything from pharma, to CPG to studios. “At this point, I believe all verticals are looking at this as a viable and in some cases better way to buy.”

Advertisers are still mixing traditional demo buys with audience targeting. “More and more we’re seeing the audience budgets increase.”

While NBCU has been offering video-on-demand addressable ads, in the coming year it will test linear addressable with parent Comcast.

This video was produced as part of Beet.TV leadership series from DMEXCO, presented by NBCUniversal. For more videos from the series, please visit this page.