NBCU Sets Up “UAP” In-House Ad Network

NBC Universal (NBCU), the media and entertainment company, has launched its own advertising platform UAP to serve its own network of owned and operated sites, Mediaweek reported, quoting company executives.

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Universal Audience Platform
To be called Universal Audience Platform (UAP), the service will sell display inventory on an audience basis across 21 sites and therefore enable NBCU to “sharply curtail” its use of third-party as networks, said Peter Naylor, EVP of NBCU Digital Media Sales. However, NBCU will still resort to such third-party platforms for international impressions.

How It works
Impression purchases will be made for specific audience targets and buyers can either use their own data or that of third parties. “Agencies won’t be able to cherry-pick individual sites ahead of time,” the report noted. “This allows us to target frequent business travelers across all of our sites,” said Naylor. “You take the horoscopes section of iVillage. Now it’s not just a place that delivers millions of page views. It’s a place to reach millions of moms with kids.”

Why This?
The move aims at “positioning NBCU as a high-reach alternative to ad networks and portals like Yahoo,” MediaWeek reported. And although UAP will initially not include the NBCU joint nets (MSNBC.com, Weather.com, CNBC.com), the network will reach around 60 million unique users, allowing the company “to go after a billion dollar segment of the market we don’t always play in,” Naylor commented.

The head of the new unit will be Nick Johnson, SVP of NBCU Digital Media Sales. He’ll be reporting to Naylor.

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