Uber said Wednesday that it has launched an advertising division and new ad format called Uber Journey Ads that uses first-party data to target users within the app.
The division is made up of a team formed within Uber over the past year led by Mark Grether, formerly a director at Amazon Advertising and CEO of Sizmek, as GM of Uber Ads.
Uber Journey Ads tap into the ride-sharing giant’s first-party data across its ride-hailing and food delivery businesses, an audience of 122 million monthly active users. Brands can scale campaigns across both Uber apps.
According to a press release, more than 40 brands have signed on to test the new feature including NBCUniversal, Heineken and United Artists Releasing. It touts early research that for brands with 100% share of voice on the platforms, Uber Journey Ads resulted in two to six times the brand performance lift after two minutes of exposure.
Grether said Uber’s advertising division will “help leading brands grow their relationships with consumers by connecting them at a moment when a customer is uniquely attentive.”
“By tapping into our mobility media network, our pilot campaigns have surpassed expectations in terms of brand lift, engagement, and other campaign goals. We’re eager to continue working with our partners to identify best-in-class offerings – such as in-car tablet advertising – that will ensure they’re engaging with captive and engaged audiences.”
The new feature and formal division come as Uber has gradually been building its advertising offering over the past few years.
Prior to Uber Journey Ads, the platform allowed brands to purchase sponsored listings in Uber Eats, sponsored emails, homepage 'billboards' or takeover units on Uber Eats and ads served to consumers post-check out. Restaurants on Uber Eats can also serve menu ads, highlighting specific offers and items on their menus.
Uber also has a retail media offering called Storefront ads that enables CPG brands to get top digital shelf placement within its app, as well as ad space on Uber car tops.
”We have a global audience of valuable, purchase-minded consumers who, as part of our core business, tell us where they want to go and what they want to get,” said Grether.
“While these consumers are making purchase decisions and waiting for their destination or delivery we can engage them with messages from brands that are relevant to their purchase journeys. And with 1.87 billion trips last quarter, that means we can connect advertisers to consumers on average five times per month across rides and delivery.”