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LiveRamp launches IdentityLink for Publishers
Participating publishers can offer Facebook-like people-based targeting on their sites.
Acxiom’s LiveRamp began as a way to match offline data with online. Last year, it moved into people-based marketing with the launch of IdentityLink, which provides anonymized identities of actual people in their different guises of multiple devices and channels.
Today, the San Francisco-based company is launching a version of IdentityLink that is designed for publishers, as it hopes to provide the kind of people-based targeting for advertisers that a walled garden like Facebook can offer. Previously, IdentityLink was focused on brands and ad/marketing tech providers.
A brand advertiser can go to Facebook with an email list of its customers or registered visitors, and then target those actual people on the giant social network. This gives Facebook and Google, in particular, a huge advantage over lesser publishers that cannot offer this massive form of people-targeting.
With IdentityLink for Publishers, a publisher like Hearst can provide LiveRamp with an authenticated list of its subscribers or registered visitors. These are the site’s equivalent — much fewer, of course — of Facebook’s membership.
An advertiser like Nike can then take its registered customers/visitors list, have LiveRamp match it via a persistent identifier like a common email address to Hearst’s list, and target those users for ads when they show up on Hearst’s site.
Now, LiveRamp CMO Jeff Smith told me, “if you bring that CRM list to Time, Inc., you can target [on Time’s sites] as you would on Facebook.” In other words, a smaller version of Facebook’s Custom Audiences or Google’s Customer Match.
He added that, as part of this new release, publishers can also provide specialty data for the IdentityLink pool, such as weather data from Weather.com.
Previously, he noted, several hundred publishers participated in IdentityLink by licensing their anonymized, authenticated customer/registered visitor data to the IdentityLink pool in general, but now they can use it for specific targeting on their own properties.
Last year, LiveRamp bought two companies — Arbor and Circulate — that added people-based publisher partnerships.
LiveRamp now joins other publisher-oriented networks that are attempting to offer Facebook-like people-based targeting to regular sites and apps, including Time, Inc./Viant and Sonobi’s new publisher consortium.
Interestingly, though, LiveRamp points to Time, Inc. as one of the publishers using their new IdentityLink for Publishers.