Powering the Next-Generation of Ad Targeting: YuMe’s Audience-Aware SDK

Posted on Nov 18, 2013 by Kristie Sein

Tyler Hampton and Nikki Heyder, YuMe Product Marketing ManagersLast week we rolled out the next-generation solutions of the YuMe platform, YuMe’s Audience-Aware SDK™ with Audience Insights and enhanced Audience Amplifier™. Our latest version SDK captures first-party data in order to boost our ability to find the right audiences across our Connected Audience Network – benefiting both publishers and brand advertisers.  Publishers and app developers now have access to Audience Insights, the most accurate picture of their audience’s demographics and interests.  Our enhanced Audience Amplifier utilizes first-party and SDK data to create distinct Audience Segments of the most receptive and attentive audiences, and all at TV-like scale, so that our brand advertisers can get the best brand results for their digital video ad campaigns.

To better understand how YuMe’s Audience-Aware SDK is powering our Audience Insights and enables us to generate Audience Segments, we held a short Q&A with our product marketing managers, Tyler Hampton and Nikki Heyder.  Tyler works on the latest YuMe solutions for advertisers and Nikki works closely with our data sciences team on the platform side.

Q: The latest YuMe Audience-Aware SDK collects first-party data, but what exactly is first-party data?

Nikki: Most people have probably heard of third-party data, which is data collected across the web from various sites and data providers. It typically represents a tiny sample of your audience, at best, with only 5-15% accuracy for targeting.  Lesser known is second-party data, which commonly takes form as registration data purchased directly from the source. When registration data is required, versus opted-in, there is an issue of accuracy; for example, filling out a form randomly for the sake of gaining access to content or services. There’s also a recency issue – typically, users provide registration data at sign up, and are not required to update their info over the course of their membership, as circumstances (such as income, marital status, etc.) change.

First-party data is collected from your users, on your site and is therefore the best data source for any type of audience targeting.  Whereas first-party data has traditionally consisted of users’ browsing behavior, it has not been especially relevant for marketers.  YuMe’s first-party surveys are designed to get at the type of behavioral and intent based traits that marketers want to target.  Our data collection is opt-in, and therefore highly accurate– a user is most likely to respond honestly to an optional survey they feel compelled to, than being forced to. And it’s safe.

Q: Why should advertisers or publishers care about first-party data?

Tyler: In today’s world of fragmented content and screens, it’s challenging for brand advertisers to reach an attentive and receptive audience (and to do it at a scale large enough to make an impact).  In order to achieve this, it’s necessary to gain an understanding of a brand’s audience, and that is where first-party data comes in.  Most of the industry relies heavily on third-party cookie data, which can go stale and is dependent on users NOT deleting cookies.  Our first-party cookie-less data is a combination of direct survey data and observed data, collected through our embedded Audience-Aware SDK; allowing us to form Audience Segments, as a brand sees it. Reaching the right audience will help drive core brand metrics, and at TV-like scale, so with YuMe’s Audience-Amplifier, we assure that the right audience is reached at TV-like scale.

Nikki: With the shift of the TV advertising dollars ($193B market) to digital video ($4B), first-party data creates a huge opportunity for publishers.  With better insights into your audience demographics and interests, publishers are able to align their audience with who consumers brand marketers care about reaching.  Because interest-based, TV-like segments are valuable to advertisers in YuMe’s ad network, publishers benefit from improved CPMs and better fill.  And since first-party data yields a highly accurate data set, publishers reduce waste caused by inaccurate targeting.

Through YuMe’s Connected Audience Network (CAN) publishers have immediate access to a network of brand advertisers and campaigns that are looking to target TV-like audiences at scale.  Whereas a single publisher may return only a small subset of a desired audience segment, YuMe for Publishers (YFP) is able to match a small set of target users from multiple sites with a campaign that spans across YuMe’s ad network.

Q: So how does the YuMe Audience-Aware SDK work to generate Audience Insights and Audience Segments?

Nikki: Our embedded Audience-Aware SDK combines unique in-player survey data with additional data points collected by the SDK (can also leverage second- or third-party data if desired), which we use to generate highly accurate, psychographic audience segments. Using data sciences, we are able to use a relatively small number of surveys to model a highly accurate audience model of your site.

Tyler: As Nikki mentioned, our enhanced Audience-Aware SDK collects first-party data that allows us to know who the target is (via in-player surveys) and the what/when/where about their digital and device usage (browser version, screen res, time of day).  Through Audience Insights, we can measure the attentiveness of the audience.  YuMe’s data-science software continually identifies patterns in the data collected, then matches these patterns to the numerous data points coming in through our SDK.  As a result, we can generate scalable segments of relevant audiences, or Audience Segments.

Q: What else can Audience Insights and Audience Segments be used for?

Nikki: Outside of improved monetization through the Connected Audience Network, first-party data can also provide valuable insights for your business – for example, by understanding your viewer demographics you can optimize your content programming so it is better tailored to your audience makeup.

Tyler: With Audience Insights, brand advertisers can develop a deeper understanding of their audience, and garner key brand performance metrics.  We have the ability to cross reference traits of the many different segments we create, allowing us to point out additional attributes of an advertiser’s targeted segment; for example, did you know that your target audience also has an interest in luxury cars?


Big thanks to Nikki and Tyler for taking time with us to talk about the latest YuMe solutions for advertisers and publishers! To learn more about our Audience-Aware SDK, Audience Insights and enhanced Audience Amplifier, visit: http://www.yume.com/technology.  Also, check out our latest whitepaper on the benefits of first-party insights which can be downloaded from our whitepaper resources library at: http://www.yume.com/insights/video-advertising-whitepapers.