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05/17/2021

Walgreens Advertising Group adds brand tools 

David Salazar
Managing Editor
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Walgreens Advertising Group is building out its suite of capabilities in order to help brands better connect with customers. The investment in Walgreens’ data and technology-led retail media offering includes over-the-top, or OTT, media services, connected TCs and traditional audience-based linear TV capabilities to help reach more customers. 

“At Walgreens Advertising Group we have three principles that are core to our DNA: to help brands deliver more relevant personalized experiences, to support audience-led and channel-agnostic media approaches, and to make it easy to work with us,” said Luke Kigel, vice president of Walgreens integrated media and leader of Walgreens Advertising Group. “These new advanced TV capabilities are all in continuance of our principles, and will open new areas of value for our brand partners that mirror our programmatic offering.”

The new offerings include the addition of both OTT and connected TV inventory accessible via wagDSP, the organization’s proprietary programmatic buying technology, which integrates Walgreens customer and transaction data with dynamic creative capabilities and real-time optimization. The company said that ad inventory is sourced through more than 100 apps and 10 supply-side platforms that offer more than 2.5 billion potential daily impressions, including inventory from key platforms. wagDSP also allows brands to activate against this inventory with all the same functionality, optimization and measurement capability as with digital video and display executed on the platform. The company said this enables people-based media targeting, accompanied by measurement and real-time optimization. 

Also part of the new offering is a first-to-market collaboration with Open AP, as well as integration with the OpenID that brands can use to reach audiences, powered by Walgreens first-party data as part of brands’ television buys. Brands currently can collaborate with Walgreens to execute against deterministic audiences, and closed-loop measurement will be in place by the start of the broadcast year. 

“Advanced data is completely transforming the way television advertising is bought and sold. With the next race in marketing focused on access to the most actionable data, Walgreens Advertising Group collaborating with brands and offering insights to deterministic data is something brands need to take notice of,” said David Levy, CEO of OpenAP. “The power of the data and the partnership with OpenAP will make it possible to deploy Walgreens data to better plan, optimize, and measure TV campaigns across all programmers and screens and enable marketers to tie their campaign performance back to in-store purchases.”

Walgreens noted that it has begun using these capabilities for its owned brands and will likely grow the extent to which the company leverages them for its own marketing. 

Walgreens also said that brands working with Walgreens Advertising Group no will be able to work with the retailer to leverage its first-party data and insights to develop media activation, optimize efforts and measure performance in advanced television and digital campaigns. 

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