Former Carat chairman Haydon Bray launches media consultancy

• Can Audience Precision help buying media in very troubled times?

Media industry entrepreneur and former chairman of Carat, Haydon Bray, has unveiled Audience Precision, a new media strategy consultancy and technology business, that aims to unlock the true value of media in driving business outcomes and eliminating the guesswork from key marketing investment decisions.

Bray, together with five founding team members and equity partners, have worked together for the past five years to develop the Audience Precision model.

Haydon Bray

In a statement, the company laid out its offer:

The model challenges the outdated media buying industry by using a combination of technology that delivers actionable insights and superior strategy, which is now being applied both in Australia and globally.

Working with foundation client, Warner Music, the model has been so successful that Audience Precision has already established offices in New York and London with further global expansion to come.

“When I returned to the market, I found it in a worse state than when I left. It’s an industry overwhelmed by new platforms, hundreds of new reporting metrics and still marred by murky deals and a legacy model that hasn’t moved on since the 1990s. Real change was needed,” Bray said.

“Finding and targeting audiences has never been more fragmented and media is the single biggest marketing expense for most businesses. Media investments need to link to business outcomes, without a pre-determined media plan.

“Audience Precision rewrites the rule book. We use data – in fact 35,000 data points for each audience segment in multiple countries – combined with proprietary systems and machine learning to help marketers better understand audiences and potential customers, align their marketing efforts, optimise marketing expenditure and significantly reduce media wastage across all media channels. We’ve been able to do what no other media agency has even thought of to eliminate the guess work.”

Audience Precision has worked across numerous Warner Music artists to better connect them with existing and potential fans.

Tony Harlow, chairman and CEO of Warner Music UK, said: “Fan engagement is increasingly at the heart of what we do – data insights around fans can play a huge part in marketing success. Audience Precision has given us a competitive advantage on how we can reach and connect with fans. The data they provide is readily usable, easy to digest, and has made a real difference in helping us think harder and smarter about the way we market our music.”

The Audience Precision team includes Bray as Global CEO, Samantha Bolton as Managing Partner USA & UK, Laura Newman as Global Head of Research, Alison Coleman as CFO, Sean Gerraty as Head of Operations and Jeremy Cath as Chief Technology Officer. The broader team includes strategy architects, researchers, masters-level data scientists, campaign engineers, software developers and media buyers.

Audience Precision is channel agnostic, does not conduct annual negotiations nor has any reliance on media owner share or commissions. It does not buy media based on demographics, there is minimal advertising expenditure wastage and it uses machine learning to predict campaign success and media performance at a channel level.

“Our model moves the conversation from price and efficiency to deliver true value and return for advertisers and our work over the past five years has proven that it can build a sustainable competitive advantage of between 20% and 50%,” Bray said.

“Even with all the technology adoption in the advertising industry, consumer-based market research connected to top-level strategy has been virtually untouched by most agencies, yet this is one of the most important components of marketing. Our business is built around these key marketing essentials and we have developed proprietary technology and an end to end solution to help accelerate the process. We help brands align communication across their entire organisation to the core audiences that have a high propensity to become customers.”

Audience Precision is based on three key pillars: DNA, that has 60+ unique audience segments based on consumer lifestyle, psychographics and behavioural patterns, to find potential customers and what drives their purchasing behaviour and media consumption choices; Precise360 that builds media strategies four times faster than a standard agency approach to deliver precise targeting to potential customers; and Activation & Analytics that buys media and reports campaign performance against the DNA segments.

Audience Precision has the ability to measure digital, social and traditional media against any individual audience segment for the first time.

The consultancy also recognises that service offerings are not one size fits all. Models can be customised to suit clients’ marketing needs.  Audience Precision is also working with clients in the entertainment, retail, health, tourism, media and other sectors.

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