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If you are heading to Las Vegas for CES 2022, let’s connect! Join IRI’s Media team to learn about our industry-leading end-to-end solutions for advertisers and their agencies, which help you  plan better campaigns, target and activate the right audiences, and measure and optimize results. Schedule a time to stop by the IRI Hospitality Suite at the Cosmopolitan when we’re there January 4-7. We look forward to seeing you!

Media Q4 2021 Newsletter

When Measurement Meets Activation: A Nestlé Case Study

By Jennifer Pelino, Global Media, IRI

In marketing, we hear a lot about the importance of personalization but also live in a world where major brands still rely heavily on mass-marketing approaches. And personalization is often added incrementally, making the full power of its impact sometimes hard to gauge.

At the Advertising Research Foundation's recent Attribution & Analytics Accelerator event, I presented with Nestlé on a plan that linked a personalization-based approach to sales lift in a very clear and effective way. The program, which Nestlé conducted in collaboration with IRI as its data partner, along with its agency partners, was designed to answer specific questions such as:

  • Does personalized creative drive a greater sales impact than a generalized marketing approach?
  • What impact, in terms of return on advertising spend (ROAS), does reaching consumers at the most opportune moments have?
  • Can ad delivery be effectively and efficiently optimized using real-time data triggers such as the weather or time of day?
  • Does our seasonal advertising work? Is it resonating with consumers and driving incremental sales?

Nestlé used IRI Lift, IRI partner data, and data analysis of test and control groups to assess monthly media performance by linking ad exposure to offline sales per household. Separate models were executed for key metrics that included:

  • Dollar sales per household
  • Household penetrations (% of households buying the product)
  • Number of purchase occasions per buying households
  • Dollar sales per occasion

To increase penetration, the focus was on prospects with defined conversion barriers – specifically, current loyal Starbucks consumers who are in a life inflection point for at-home coffee products, visit Starbucks cafes and also purchase at-home coffee products from competitors. (Nestlé purchased the retail arm of Starbucks in 2018.)

Nestlé created targets based on these criteria using IRI's purchase data, which includes the world’s largest CPG loyalty card dataset covering 117 million households across 93% of the U.S. The prospects were then separated into two groups.

Phase One: Target Toward Light/Non-buyer Prime Prospect Groups With Conversion Objective

Two messaging types were tested with both prospect groups – inspirational (focused on more meaningful coffee moments) and functional (about making a better cup of coffee). The results demonstrated a significant increase in lift by focusing on these strategically selected audiences with the right messaging.

By Focusing on the Right Audience, Phase 1 Results Proved Positive

The next phase of the study used dynamic creative optimization that layered purchase-based data and real-time factors such as time of day, weather and seasonality on top of the existing focused prospect groups and personalized creative.

An automated decision tree helped serve very targeted, relevant messages to the right subgroups of these two prospect groups based on their recent purchases, pages they have viewed and other data. This included always-on targeted digital banners that proved to drive measurable sales lift of between 5% and 8% a month. Overall, the new, highly personalized approach enabled Nestlé to achieve a verifiable increase in sales lift of 200% to 300% compared to the previous non-personalized approach.

Key Takeaways and Recommendations

The Nestlé study demonstrates the value of effective personalization toward better marketing results and provides a basic blueprint that marketers can employ in their own campaigns:

  • Start with the right targets and create messaging designed to resonate with them.
  • Evaluate your data and findings to confirm you are reaching the right targets based on your objectives.
  • Test and learn by using new data points to refine your messaging and targeting and layer on even more personalized messages.
  • Deliver real-time activations and customized messages to deliver additional unique value-adds.
  • Continually measure your campaigns in flight using IRI Sales Lift results for dynamic campaign optimization.

Using this approach, you can leverage the power of customer data to boost the personalization, agility and ROAS of your own marketing programs. To learn more, reach out to your IRI representative or

IRI Shares Digiday Technology Award for Best Mobile Marketing Platform with IRI and LoopMe

IRI, LoopMe, PepsiCo and OMD recently won a Digiday Technology Award for a recent Mountain Dew campaign focused on reaching new buyers. It used IRI's Campaign Conversion Feed (CCF) powered by over 500 million retailer loyalty cards and the LoopMe platform to power in-flight media optimizations by linking deterministic UPC purchases to exposure to specific ads.

LoopMe’s AI learned which tactics drove offline sales conversions and auto-allocated more budget to higher-performing tactics. CCF helped the platform predict identify the most likely purchasers for the product and find more of them for each subsequent impression served. IRI Household Lift was used to gauge the results of the campaign, which increased sales lift by 40% and delivered an impressive ROAS of $1.28 in the highly penetrated category.

How Social Media Can Help You Answer Three Key Marketing Questions

Consumer sentiment on social media about brands can shift so quickly that it can be hard to adapt campaigns and marketing quickly enough in response. But brands can do it if they truly listen. In the process, they can also answer three key questions that will help optimize future marketing: Who should I reach to maximize the effectiveness of my marketing? What messages will resonate best with my target audiences? Where can I best reach my target audiences?

IRI recently looked at this issue through the lens of a major CPG company and its legacy comfort food brand. The brand used social media tracking tied to point-of-sale data to determine the most important audiences to target, the messages that would resonate best and the best channels to invest in. By listening to its consumers, the brand learned how to best adjust its approach so that it could optimize the power of social media. Read Now

Plan Your Media Campaigns to Include Likely Purchasers of Your Brand

With the new year starting and Super Bowl, Valentine's Day, St. Patrick's Day and other holidays coming up soon, don't forget that you can access verified buyers who shop specific occasions using IRI’s Lifestyle Audiences.

These segments can be used to supplement your campaigns and help ensure that you are reaching the most likely purchasers of your brand and category. Unlike other audience targeting offerings, IRI Audiences are built from actual household purchase behavior and not inferred from sporadic contextual or web-based data points.

Better Data, Better Results

The use of real purchase-based audiences translates into real results for IRI clients. One candy manufacturer recently used IRI ProScores Audiences and IRI Verified Competitive brand buyers as well as other non-IRI audiences in a campaign using custom content, placements and general display ads. The sales lift generated by the two purchase-based IRI Audiences was double that observed from the non-IRI audiences.

Another client, a regional salty snack brand, sought to grow sales on a social platform by advertising to both the platform’s native audience and an IRI Audience of current and non-brand buyers. While both drove trial, trips and spend, the IRI Verified Audience drove 4.5x higher lift and 7.5x higher ROAS than the native audience.

In another success story, a frozen food manufacturer sought to understand which audience targeting tactics would work best in driving offline sales across the brand’s portfolio. A test of two IRI Complete Audiences (for its core and better-for-you offerings) found that the IRI Verified Audiences achieved 6% lift, nearly twice the company benchmark, as well as driving increased penetration, occasions and spend per occasion.

Seize Key Moments of Opportunity

As we enter the heart of winter with COVID-19 still strongly affecting consumers, several IRI Audiences of households focused on health and related areas are a great match for many marketing opportunities:

Audience Definition Household Count
Health Boosters The top 70% of buyers of superfoods including kale, acai, kombucha, quinoa, goji, seaweed and chia seed 2,443,277
Immunity Boosters Shoppers who buy Emergen-C, Airborne and other immunity-boosting supplements and beverages/smoothies 5,622,782
Nutritionists The top 30% of buyers of vitamins/supplements and nutritional shakes/drinks 5,520,969
Clean Freaks The top 30% of buyers of household cleaners, household cleaner cloths and hand sanitizer 4,786,589

The numerous shopper segments we offer make it easy for brands to reach the right consumers for any upcoming seasonal event, activity or holiday.

You can find IRI Audiences segments on your DMP under "IRI Verified CPG Audiences" or learn more at

If you have questions about anything you’ve read above, please reach out to your IRI representative or

All of us at IRI wish you a happy and healthy 2022!