IBM ties with Nielsen for weather-based AI ad scheme

rainbow-4285843_1920IBM Watson is aiming to strengthen its appeal to marketers with the launch of a new suite to help brands better align product sales with the weather at scale, without the use of third-party cookies or identifiers.

Watson Advertising Weather Targeting is driven by the Nielsen Connect Partner Network, claimed to be the largest open ecosystem of solution providers for retailers and manufacturers in the packaged goods industry.

The system uses “enterprise-grade” artificial intelligence to analyse over 500 advertising triggers, with up to six variables per trigger across 42,000 postcodes every hour, increasing the amount of actionable insights the company generates for brands.

Using the weather to target ads is nothing new, of course, the outdoor industry has been running such ads for a number of years. But the IBM Watson Advertising and Nielsen’s collaboration, which also taps into The Weather Company, will provide advertising solutions free from personally identifiable information, third-party cookies or identifiers.

IBM senior vice-president of cognitive applications, blockchain and ecosystems Bob Lord said: “As we prepare for a future without third-party identifiers, it’s critical that the industry puts consumers at the centre and rely on advanced technologies like artificial intelligence to help make sense of massive amounts of structured and unstructured data with a privacy-first mandate.

“IBM and Nielsen have long been guided by the trust we build between clients and customers. We open up our technologies to make the ecosystem work for consumers and now more than ever, we must come together to help brands effectively leverage the medium while doing right by their audiences.”

The targeting solution will be available across the digital advertising ecosystem, including programmatic, display, social, search, video, email and digital out-of-home.

The Weather Targeting data tool is part of a suite of AI-driven targeting solutions. Most recently, IBM Watson Advertising used the technology to assist with the Covid-19 pandemic by enabling brands to run relevant and locally sensitive digital ads based on fluctuating infection rates.

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