Why National Cinemedia’s post-pandemic plan is about audiences and

Cinema presence has declined during the epidemic.

But in-movie advertising agency National Cinemedia was not lazy when it waited for foot traffic to return, says Manu Singh, SVP of Strategic Insights and Analysis. Instead, the company has invested heavily in its data technology infrastructure.

Now, with moviegoers returning to theaters, NCM’s epidemic project is ready for its big-screen moment. The new data and analytics platform, NCMx, was launched on the upfront last week.

NCMx acts as a back-end data service for the theater chain. It aggregates and packages data into analytics reports, which can be cut by geographic, behavioral, and exposure data – based on the movies people watch.

The shiny new data offers rely on a broad return to pre-epidemic film.

Singh sued for movie theaters as a way to cut the cord and reach the cord never. A report from Samba TV states that in the fourth quarter of 2021, 45% of linear advertising spending reached only 3% of “light” TV viewers or viewers who leaned towards over-the-top (OTT) streaming video. He said this “accessible” theater can be found sitting.

In terms of population, the idea is understandable – the younger generation did not abandon traditional TV, because they never knew how to start it. But young audiences still flock to the theater, Singh said.


It’s hard enough to track the behavior of consumers driven by the big screen in the living room. Now imagine measuring the impact of an ad on dozens or hundreds of people – who knows? – Sitting in a theater.

The NCM has used panel-based matching in the past, Singh says, for attribution.

But NCMx is the first to point out that the company can tie determinant exposure data to the audience. With proprietary mobile apps, loyalty card subscriptions and a first-party data resource including anonymous geographic data and device IDs, he said NCM could track down traffic and signals down the purchase funnel from app visits to app downloads and transactions. NCM can then share aggregate data with third-party attribution partners (such as Catalina) to connect exposure to real-life conversions.

Attribution capabilities were also part of NCM’s growth plan prior to the epidemic and were transferred to first-party data services.

Take two

NCM’s media business began as a pre-roll ad on theaters. And that’s still business.

The NCM has tested more separate pre-roll placements in theaters, but did not reach a full rollout before the epidemic hit, Singh said. Now, the company is focusing on implementing tempting ad slots in the “light-down” segment as well as trailers and showtimes.

Attribution is involved with the NCMx retargeting solution.

Retargeting is a boon for NCMx because promotions are no longer tied to “must-see windows” in theaters, Singh says.

Advertisers can engage theater visitors with site traffic or sales. Instead of combining ways to re-target movie audiences “in the wild,” he said, brands can now more effectively re-target their audiences in the real world when they are “in the buying mindset”.

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