Nucleus Marketing’s Mission for 2018: Make Media Buyers Believe in News

Share this:

Not yet two years old, Nucleus Marketing Solutions now represents 200+ national and local news publishers. Its 159 million unique visitors monthly are “larger than the TV audience of the Super Bowl,” it says.  Perhaps a more impressive and cash-able number is its monthly high-CPM video impressions — now grown to 180 million.

Affiliated with the four Nucleus Marketing founding partners — Gannett, McClatchy, Hearst and Tronc — are affiliates which include the AP and newspapers like the Philadelphia Inquirer and Daily News and (recently reorganized under the Philadelphia Media Network), the Oregonian in Portland and Newark Star-Ledger (Advance Publications), St. Louis Post-Dispatch (Lee Enterprises) and the privately owned Seattle Times, Minneapolis Star-Tribune and Newsday on Long Island.

In this Q & A, president and CEO Seth Rogin — formerly chief revenue officer at Mashable and vice president of advertising at the New York Times — talks about how Nucleus Marketing combats fraud in Web advertising, brings personalization to marketing and tries to convert young media buyers into buying space on premium news sites:

Brand safety continues to be a major concern in the ad industry, with 36% of all Web traffic identified as fake? What is Nucleus Marketing doing to protect brand safety?
Brand safety begins with knowing where your ads run, and assuring that the adjacent content establishes the tone of trust and credibility your campaign deserves. As the national audience buy that targets consumers on their highly trusted hometown news sites, Nucleus provides complete transparency of where a brand will run across our alliance of trusted and respected publishers.  In addition, we observe all industry standards put forth by the Trust Accountability Group (TAG). Our standards are extremely high for determining what publishers are a part of Nucleus.

Can Nucleus Marketing offer more to brands more than the big search and social platforms?
Smart marketers have learned that audience alone isn’t enough. Although Nucleus offers massive scale, like search and social, to the most desired audiences, it’s our quality journalistic environments that set us apart. Nucleus isn’t about being some unreliable “feed” of content that can’t be trusted. Nucleus brands are a part of our readers live. Wherever their lives may take them, consumers return habitually to these publishers for the truth.

You claim 67% “brand lift.” What does that mean and how do you achieve it?
A recent study conducted by comScore demonstrated that premium publishers are 3x more effective in driving mid-funnel brand lift metrics such as favorability, consideration and intent to recommend. The primary driver of this increased effectiveness is the “halo effect” of the contextual environment in which the ads are seen. Why spend millions on creating a campaign to run it somewhere of questionable reputation?

What does Nucleus Marketing bring to personalization in marketing that’s making a difference for advertisers?
Nucleus has an intimate knowledge of our audience that has impressed many major brands. We use proprietary, first-party data from all our major and local market news brands to create real, actionable insights for advertisers. We unify home delivery data with the top digital data to create precision and insight for some of the world’s largest brands.

What are you doing to improve “purchase-based targeting” in advertising?
We’ve strategically partnered with a leading location-based servicer to offer advertisers real-time analytics around purchase behavior. This, coupled with our proprietary first-party data, allows for precision purchased-based targeting for advertisers.

Nucleus’s Seth Rogin

What are you doing to improve readers’ trust in what you do with data that profiles them?
The bond of trust between our readers and our environments is paramount. We anonymize all data that we have access to in order to keep information private. We partner only with highly reputable firms like LiveRamp to drive security in data transactions. Security and trust are key to the Nucleus story, connecting global brands with highly desirable consumers.

What’s shaping up as the biggest challenge for the news industry in this New Year?
The challenge for Nucleus is clear. A generation of young media buyers often don’t see the value of the news environment as an advertising option because of the way it has been fractured and outspent in previous years. Nucleus, along with the entities we represent, is changing that. Brands are testing Nucleus and voting with their dollars. Our advertisers are repeating and growing, and that’s good news for us all.

Tom GrubisichTom Grubisich (@TomGrubisich) has written “The New News” column for Street Fight since 2011. He is also working on a book about the history, present, and future of Charleston, S.C.