Placed Extends In-Store Attribution From Mobile To Desktop

The location-ad metrics provider opens its Cross Device Marketplace and is joined by BlueCava, Crosswise, and Drawbridge.

cross device 2After striking 100-plus deals to show whether the mobile ads run by publishers, networks, advertisers, and other third-party tech platforms drove in-store foot-traffic, Placed is bringing its in-store visitation metrics to cover desktop views with the development of its Cross Device Marketplace.

The Seattle-based location analytics provider has been fine-tuning its main metrics product, Placed Attribution, in a bid to be recognized as the advertising industry’s “standard metric” for online-to-offline attribution.

If it sounds like the discussion of cross-platform metrics is getting louder these days, Placed CEO and founder David Shim suggests it’s because the groundwork has been laid over the course of the past few years.

“I don’t think this is new demand, as Placed was the first in market to deliver cross-device attribution to in-store with Dstillery in September 2014,” Shim tells GeoMarketing. “Since that announcement, Placed has continued to onboard new partners to measure their cross device campaigns, utilizing their priority cross-platform solutions.  These partners include Collective, Conversant, Dstillery, GumGum, Viant, and 4INFO.”

What’s Driving Competition

As proximity marketing and omnichannel retail strategies begin to catch on with major brands and stores, a number of companies are vying for the ad industry’s validation and reliance. The old media buyer’s dictum, often repeated at ad conferences, goes like this: “If I can’t measure it, I can’t spend on it.”

The idea is related to the advertiser’s need for a clear apples-to-apples comparison when determining the value a particular media channel’s audience offers. Ultimately, actionable audience metrics depend on wide agreement among buyers and sellers.

That’s what explains the constant deal-making: measurement providers are best judged by the clarity of their data sources; but ultimately, differentiation is only apparent when it comes to the major buyers, sellers, and vendors who trust other analytics companies’ promise to deliver ROI on the ad dollars that pass through their respective platforms.

The most recent example is Tuesday’s deal between location ad targeter/mobile analytics provider NinthDecimal and cross-platform ad company Tapad — which has been formally working with Placed since April and is also an official launch partner for it Cross Device Marketplace — in an effort to deliver metrics on whether online ads are driving in-store traffic and sales or not.

For Placed’s Cross Device Marketplace, the company has drafted alliances with three additional online-to-offline analytics players alongside Tapad: BlueCava, Crosswise, and Drawbridge. Shim adds that BlueCava and Crosswise are new partnerships, while Drawbridge and Tapad are extensions of the previously signed agreements.

“With BlueCava and Crosswise, we’ve been enabling selected campaigns across network of 100-plus partners to measure impact that cross-platform has on store visitation,” Shim says.  “In terms of Drawbridge and Tapad, Placed measured their managed media campaigns, but with this announcement this technology extends their technology to leading publishers, networks, and [Demand-Side Platforms] to connect desktop ads to store visitation.”

In the announcement, Placed partners offer their assessment of why the introduction of a formal cross-device toolset is so important right now.

“Placed’s focused approach, separating media from attribution is commendable, not only for attribution, but for cross-screen measurement,” cheers Bill Varga, BlueCava’s CRO in a statement.

“We are pleased to be a part of Placed’s Cross Device Marketplace, which will enhance Placed’s partners’ ability to accurately measure desktop to in-store attribution,” says Steve Glanz, Crosswise’s founder/CEO, playing his part to herald the association. “Advanced solutions to cross-device identification challenges will enable Placed’s partners to realize a truly omnichannel approach to attribution.”


Placed's David Shim
Placed’s David Shim

Placed’s Next Steps

Where decidedly mobile programmatic platforms and geo-targeting providers like NinthDecimal pull in data from their wide-ranging publisher relationships, Place Attribution is based on a panel model that includes more than 600,000 active opted-in mobile app users, which Placed notes represents 1 in 450 adults in the US.

In July, Placed rolled out a complementary measurement product that moved the company into the viewability realm: Placed Revenue, which is able to determine whether a mobile user saw an ad. From there, the Seattle startup records data from offline purchases and then matches that to devices that displayed the initial ad.

In a preliminary demonstration that Placed’s metrics tools are ready to build the bridge from mobile to desktop, Placed Attribution released its first “Cross Device Benchmarks” for Q2 2015. The company said that the In-Store Conversion Rate Average Lift was 3.44 percent, while Average Lift was 11.14 percent, and Average Cost Per Store Visit was $1.14.

Are those figures good or bad? The only way to tell will be to wait for Q2 2016, when a seasonable comparison will account for seasonal spending shifts during the calendar year. But for the next few months, observers will keep a close eye on Placed Attribution’s sequential comparison in Q3 2015.

“This move cements Placed as the standard currency to measure ad exposure to store visitation, purchase, and revenue across desktop, tablet, and mobile.,” says Shim  “The Cross Device Marketplace continues Placed’s tradition of delivering an trusted solution in-market that is independent of media, and provides choice to advertisers, publishers, and networks. By launching with 4 best in class cross device technology companies, Placed delivers a true platform, versus alternative approaches that offer a single solution.”

About The Author
David Kaplan David Kaplan @davidakaplan

A New York City-based journalist for over 20 years, David Kaplan is managing editor of A former editor and reporter at AdExchanger, paidContent, Adweek and MediaPost.