Viacom, TiVo partner to give TV advertisers more data

Nov 2 (Reuters) - Media company Viacom Inc and set-top box maker TiVo Inc have formed a partnership designed to help advertisers better target their TV commercials and determine if their ads led to store visits or purchases, executives said.

The alliance, to be announced on Monday, is part of an effort by Viacom to offer advertisers more than traditional age and gender data about the viewers of a particular show. The operator of Nickelodeon, Comedy Central and MTV has seen its TV ratings slip in recent quarters while viewers embraced digital platforms, and executives have criticized traditional measurement as incomplete.

Advertisers also are calling for better data as viewing habits shift.

Through the new partnership, TiVo will take audience data for Viacom programming from the 2.3 million U.S. households that take part in its research panel and link details from each household with shopping and other information from third parties. Names of the viewers are kept anonymous, the companies said.

It is TiVo’s first alliance of its kind with a TV network.

“This partnership will not only enable advertisers to see how effectively a campaign reached the target audience, but it will shed light on whether the campaign enticed consumers to take action such as going to a store or buying a product,” said Frank Foster, senior vice president and general manager of TiVo Research.

Reporting by Lisa Richwine; Editing by Andrew Hay