Emily Tan
Jun 13, 2014

Xaxis' Asian roll-out of new real-time global DMP

ASIA-PACIFIC –WPP’s programmatic arm Xaxis just launched Turbine, a new data management platform (DMP) the agency claims is capable of creating audience-segment profiles in real time. The system becomes available in select Asia-Pacific markets as part of its global roll out.

Michel de Rijk
Michel de Rijk

Developed with an investment of more than US$25 million, the platform fully launches first in Australia, India, Singapore and Malaysia. The rest of the region, including in China, comes on line in coming months, managing director of Xaxis Asia-Pacific, Michel de Rijk told Campaign Asia-Pacific

“Technically, Turbine is immediately available across the world as it is installed in servers we have access to, but to use the analogy of a car, it’s the engine; we need the fuel and Turbine’s fuel is data,” said de Rijk.

Xaxis, he adds, has been investing in building up its data sources in Asia-Pacific from the beginning but it still takes awhile to have sufficient data to build audience-segment profiles quickly and continuously throughout the campaign, which is the primary advantage, the agency claims, Turbine has over any other DMP.

On other DMPs, campaigns work off of outdated audience profiles, explained de Rijk. “Data suppliers push batches of data to these DMPs just once a month, which isn’t that frequent, especially when you consider that audience profiles are constantly changing. Because you’re working on outdated data sets you’re dealing with a big margin in ineffectiveness.”

Turbine also promises to overcome the disadvantage of using the same third-party data sets that a brand’s competitors might use. “For other programmatic platforms, your audience data will come from a third-party data supplier, which is used by everybody who uses that platform, including direct competitors looking to target that same audience segment,” explained de Rijk. Xaxis promises to supply Turbine with unique and proprietary, second-party data that isn’t available on the open market.

Furthermore, in Asia-Pacific, “there is no third-party data”, he commented. “So our advantage here is data versus no data. Even prior to the launch of Turbine, our data pool was 10 times bigger than the existing biggest third-party data provider in Asia-Pacific.”

The main reason for this state of affairs in the region, said de Rijk, is that third party data suppliers are not willing to invest in supporting Asia’s rarer languages such as Thai, Cantonese and Vietnamese. “They don’t see, from a data-selling point of view, enough opportunities in the market to develop these languages.”

To solve this problem, 24/7 Media (which has since merged with Xaxis) acquired Crystal Semantics, now known as Xaxis Semantics, he explained. “So we have those language capabilities.”

According to a statement by Mark Grether, global COO of Xaxis, in a recent UK study, Xaxis data drove at least 50 per cent reduction in cost per acquisition versus third-party data. In Asia-Pacific, when benchmarking Xaxis data against no-data segments, the results are similar, said de Rijk.

However, should other data providers catch up with Xaxis in the next six months to a year, Turbine still has an advantage in its ability to update audience segments by integrating directly with Xaxis’ buying platform and connecting audience intelligence to buying decisions. “We’re able to work with live-created audience segments custom-built for specific advertisers and campaigns,” said de Rijk.

Turbine integrates with the Xaxis buying platform and therefore sits under the agency's control rather than with a client’s dashboard. What clients will see, said de Rijk, are better results and an increase in performance.

“We will be running the first campaigns in Asia-Pacific on Turbine before the end of this month,” he said. “I’m looking forward to the results.”

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