Sky’s ad sales arm Sky Media announced this morning that it is today rolling out ‘Sky Analytics’ to brands and agencies, a new set of tools for planning, reporting and evaluating campaigns run with Sky via an online portal. The tools will at launch be available only for Sky’s on-demand and AdSmart (Sky’s addressable TV advertising offering) inventory, but the plan is to expand the tools to all of Sky Media’s addressable, on-demand and linear inventory.
The tools seem designed to give advertisers and agencies the same sort of self-serve controls for planning and monitoring their Sky campaigns that they get on the digital platforms, like Facebook and YouTube. “Sky Analytics is a significant step in giving agencies and clients more control of their TV campaigns,” said Sky’s group director of advanced advertising Jamie West. “The ability to plan campaigns using the wealth of targeting attributes or combining with their own data is hugely compelling. We are on a journey to deliver a single powerful platform with the flexibility marketers have come to expect from digital, but for the brand safe premium video experience of TV.”
This is likely to appeal specifically to the direct-to-consumer brands who are beginning to spend more TV, but who are used to the self-serve tools available on the digital platforms, and to small local advertisers whose limited resources make it harder to plan and optimise their TV campaigns.
The tools which are available to advertisers will vary slightly based on which inventory they’re buying. For example, on-demand campaigns will give independently verified metrics through MOAT including viewability, which won’t be available for AdSmart. But the ultimate goal is to create as unified a platform as possible, which Sky describes as “a one-stop shop for cross platform, planning, reporting and evaluation”.
For planning, this means the ability to set campaign goals, build audiences and define geographic targeting across inventory. Sky says advertisers will also have access to purchasing behaviour from partnering companies including Boots, Mastercard and GAME, which they can use to inform and target their campaigns.
For reporting, Sky says it will provide daily impression, reach and frequency breakdowns, as well as “impressions heatmaps” which show when campaigns are being seen the most. And for evaluation, Sky says it will match transactional data with its own data on which households were and weren’t exposed to a campaign for attribution purposes.
Overall, Sky will likely hope that a simplified set of tools will make running Sky campaigns easier and attract more spend both from those already advertising with Sky, and those who aren’t. And some of those Sky works with say they’re excited about the new capabilities. “There’s generally a need to allocate funds to certain media activities way before they take place,” said Ian Waddington, managing director of Propeller. “And so something that gives me a better handle on what costs might be is a great thing, because I can be more accurate in our overall budgeting… Sky Analytics is definitely makes booking an AdSmart campaign easier for me, no doubt about that.”