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Commerce Media and Data Collaboration: The Real MVPs of the Paris 2024 Olympics


Paris, Olympics 2024



As the world gears up for the 2024 Summer Olympics in Paris, an exciting development in the retail and commerce media space is poised to redefine the spectator experience – bridging the gap between viewing and purchasing. Privacy-centric data collaboration is turning sports marketing moments into viable sales opportunities.


A perfect example of this is NBC Universal's announcement of its Virtual Concessions ad format, which represents a crucial moment in the evolution of commerce media. As spectators settle in to watch the world's greatest athletes in 2024, they will have the capability to order snacks, drinks, and merchandise with the grace of a Simone Biles vault — all without leaving the comfort of their living room sofa.


Imagine the scenario: a family watches a breathtaking gymnastics routine, and a Virtual Concession prompt offers the opportunity to purchase a 'Gymnastics Fan Pack' complete with themed snacks and gear. With a few clicks of their remote, the order is placed, and the items are en route to their home, ready to enhance their Olympic viewing experience. This seamless integration of advertising and purchasing is the cornerstone of commerce media’s promise and power.



TV E-commerce


The Power Play of Privacy-Centric Data Collaboration


However, orchestrating such seamlessly personalized experiences without encroaching on privacy is a tall order. Here's where the importance of sophisticated data collaboration platforms comes into play. They ensure that sensitive user data doesn't get mishandled while still enabling this innovative form of media commerce.


For example, through the secure and anonymized blending of viewer data, it's possible to offer a 'Sprint Finish Pack' of energy drinks and running gear to spectators who regularly tune into track events. This degree of personalization is achieved by responsibly harnessing data from various touchpoints and using it to curate an experience that feels custom-made, yet still respects the privacy of the consumer — a crucial marker of trust in today's market.


Crossing the Channels: Creating an Omnichannel Experience


As we reflect on the cross-platform nature of TV-enabled commerce during live sports events, the emerging scenario with NBCU's Virtual Concessions is just a glimpse of the full potential at play. Data collaboration platforms must perform optimally across all manner of devices — from smart TVs to smartphones, ensuring that viewers' experiences are as seamless as they are private and personalized.


For the Paris Olympics, this might see someone cheering on their national team via satellite broadcast, receiving push notifications on their wearable when their favorite athlete is about to compete, with the opportunity to purchase merchandise via a shoppable tweet. Behind this omnichannel curtain, data collaboration platforms are the puppeteers, managing complex streams of anonymized data to create a tapestry of individualized yet secure interactions.


A Winning Strategy for Paris 2024


The synergy required to bring these personalized experiences to viewers of the Paris 2024 Olympics is grounded in utilizing Privacy Enhancing Technologies (PETs) like data clean rooms and differential privacy. When advertisers, CTV companies like NBCU, and retailers come together, they do so by creating secure, controlled environments where each of their first-party data can be matched and analyzed without direct access to the datasets themselves. For example, an advertiser may identify traits associated with sports fans, while the CTV company understands viewing preferences, and retailers possess detailed transaction histories. Instead of merging these datasets or exposing sensitive consumer data, they utilize advanced encryption technologies, like Private Set Intersection (PSI), to safely handle encrypted data. This means they can create valuable customer profiles for targeted marketing without accessing or revealing any personal information that could identify individuals. These anonymized profiles can then be used to tailor offerings like the 'Gymnastics Fan Pack' without compromising individual privacy, ensuring compliance with privacy regulations and maintaining consumer trust.



Olympic Rings


As the framework for the Paris Olympics takes shape, it becomes clear that the legacy of these Games will be as much about gold medals as about the golden era of privacy-compliant commerce media it's set to inaugurate. Thanks to data collaboration platforms upholding the sanctity of consumer privacy, while enabling the sophisticated targeting capabilities of commerce media, we are witness to the dawn of an exciting new chapter in the spectator experience.


Edik Mitelman is General Manager of Privacy Cloud, AppsFlyer

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