In the modern world of ad targeting, it seems every vendor, buyer and publishers is focused on audience “identity”.

But, with so many organizations offering “identity” services, what does it all mean?

In this video interview with Beet.TV, Matt Spiegel, EVP, Marketing Solutions, Head of Media Vertical, TransUnion, argues that sales pitch has become “too generic”.

Getting specific

“The word ‘identity’ is becoming a little bit too generic,” Spiegel says. “We need to be, I think, more specific.”

“What we’re talking about when really the industry says the word ‘identity’, we really mean identity resolution. It’s the process of being able to connect different devices to individuals, and different individuals to households.

“Everyone in the industry, whether you’re a buyer or a seller of media or advertising, or you’re a marketer at a broad perspective, you’re a technology company, you have to have some form of an ‘identity strategy‘, and you need to be talking about the fact that you can utilise identity.”

Quest for identity

The quest for understanding consumers’ identity has been sparked partly by the deprecation of traditional digital device identifiers, initiated by privacy concerns.

Given that some traditional methods focused on devices, the new area of focus is to see and understand people, across each of their devices.

When it comes to identity strategy, Spiegel differentiates two approaches:

  • investing in your own view of understanding your customer and prospect identity.
  • ecosystem that allows for a whole business to move to a more precision-, people-based marketing ecosystem.

TransUnion’s growth

It may be more commonly thoughts of as a consumer credit information provider.

But, after a couple of years involving acquisitions and integrations, TransUnion has arrived on the map as an advertising data enabler.

Since TransUnion entered the media space in 2019, it has acquired TruOptikplugged into the TV industry’s Blockgraph initiative and began powering OpenAP’s OpenID.

In December, its closed its proposed $3.1 billion acquisition of identity resolution Neustar, which would create a giant in the data-driven advertising space.

Identity-driven currency proliferation

But, as media owners and ad buyers alike in 2022 test out new TV currencies on top of Nielsen, Spiegel doesn’t think that is an area TransUnion wants to duplicate.

“I don’t think there’ll be one (winning currency),” he says. “I think there’ll be a several-handful ways that marketers and media companies work together to transact this cross-channel media ecosystem.

“I don’t think the endpoint will be an arrival at a single new model, just acceptance of a handful of other models that will more and more lead toward getting a census-level understanding of that reach and frequency. That’s all underpinned by identity.

“We’re going to hopefully continue to be part of that ecosystem … providing that identity infrastructure to enable these new currencies to evolve.”

You are watching “Advertising Transformation: What’s Next for Converged TV and Video,” a Beet.TV Virtual Leadership Summit presented by Mediaocean. For more videos, please visit this page.