Addressable advertising might be the right prescription for pharmaceutical advertisers.
Modi Media, the advanced television unit of media buying giant GroupM, has made a deal with Medicx Media Solutions, a source of drug and health data, which will enable clients to surgically target consumers and help them cure what ails them.
Addressable television lets advertisers send the messages to individual households. About half the country is now served by TV providers who can deliver addressable ads. Modi expects that to go up to 60% by the end of the year as Time Warner Cable, Charter Communications and Cox Cable get into the act.
Using medical data, as well as shopping data about over-the-counter remedies, enables Modi Media to help its clients connect and send relevant messages to households where someone has a specific condition, according to Jamie Power, managing partner at Modi Media.
For example, “if someone has osteoporosis or someone has a heart condition, we’re able to use this data to identify those households and then either send them messages to the household level or the zone level,” Power said.
“And then on the back end of the campaign, we’re actually able to measure the results,” she added.
Medicx Media Solutions’ Micro-Neighborhood Targeting allows for targeting consumers while protecting their privacy.
“The pharmaceutical and healthcare industries require a privacy compliant way to precisely and efficiently deliver relevant messaging to consumers watching television, and this partnership does that at scale,” said Michael Weintraub, CEO of Medicx Media Solutions. “Advanced, addressable TV advertising is another step forward in our commitment to building a true omni-channel addressable audience platform uniquely designed to comply with the regulatory and privacy requirements of the pharmaceutical and healthcare industries.”
Modi works with five different GroupM pharmaceutical and OTC brand clients and has tested targeted advertising for some of them.
“We just got the result back from a client with a medicine for osteoporosis and we were trying to test the impact of targeting TV on advertising and then on the back end measure the impact of the ad exposure,” Power said. “And we saw on the back end return on ad spend was 3 to 1."
Modi found there was a lift in doctor visits of 2½ times. “When you look at awareness of the actually having osteoporosis, it was 18% of people coming in and saying ‘I think I have osteoporosis’ and then requesting that type of medication, the awareness was up 33%,” she said.
With addressable advertising, the ads are more relevant and help consumers get the help they need. They get the correct diagnosis, see a doctor and get treated, she said.
At the same time, “if you have a product that’s for children and you don’t have a kid under the age of 12 then you shouldn’t see an ad for that medicine,” she said. “It’s honing in on the most appropriate audiences.”
Addressable advertising also helps products that might not have enough money for a big TV ad campaign test to see if TV would be effective for that medication or condition.
Power said that mass media TV campaigns will remain important in marketing. “I don’ think that even if every single household was addressable that you ever have just an addressable targeted campaigns because you need to build up that awareness,” she said. “I think it’s a compliment.”
Jon has been business editor of Broadcasting+Cable since 2010. He focuses on revenue-generating activities, including advertising and distribution, as well as executive intrigue and merger and acquisition activity. Just about any story is fair game, if a dollar sign can make its way into the article. Before B+C, Jon covered the industry for TVWeek, Cable World, Electronic Media, Advertising Age and The New York Post. A native New Yorker, Jon is hiding in plain sight in the suburbs of Chicago.
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