IBM is adding three new tools to its ad product version offering this year as it continues to develop a range of AI-powered targeting offerings that are not based on cookies or trackers.
The tech giant announced that it will add a number of new features to its ad suite that address ad assignment, video, and over-the-top creative and audience prediction (OTT). The company also announced plans to build a partner ecosystem that includes ad tech companies like Xandr, Magnite, Nielsen, MediaMath, LiveRamp and Beeswax from AT&T.
The new functions are in line with IBM’s goal of providing an AI-based alternative to traditional cookie and tracker targeting, as large platforms such as Apple and Google are gradually phasing out support for such identifiers.
“The advertising industry is in a state of great upheaval – not just with the global economic and social crisis – but also with many of the privacy laws that apply to consumers,” said Sheri Bachstein, global director of Watson Advertising and the Weather Company. “It really is the time for a new era of advertising. And we believe this era is AI. “
IBM is expanding its Advertising Accelerator, a tool introduced by IBM in January that uses AI to predict which creative content will work best, to include video and OTT formats. The company is also launching a new attribution solution – in beta sometime in the coming months – and a predictive audience tool that allows marketers to identify audience segments based on common behaviors rather than identifiers.
The announcement comes after IBM announced last month it would be working with Nielsen to add more targeting options to its existing weather-related ad tool. IBM has built a digital advertising company since purchasing Weather Company in 2015 and renaming it to Watson Advertising.
IBM also announced this week that it is working towards a partner ecosystem that will bring together existing employees like Meidamath and Nielsen, as well as new partners like Xandr and Magnite from AT&T, with whom IBM is currently negotiating final agreements.
“They think about the conditions under which AI ruled in finance, like what had to be true – the idea that markets were getting big enough that automation was available,” said Joe Zawadzki, CEO of MediaMath. “I think you see the same terms for AI in advertising, where it goes from experimental and incidental to a mission that is critical for people to find out.”