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Processed data for advertisers

The various means to utilise data have developed fast during the last few years. Today we can obtain very accurate information about consumer interests and behaviour. And this will benefit advertisers and consumers alike.

Alma Media Solutions uses the huge amount of Alma’s online contents to analyse the various interests of various people in different publications. This data will then be processed and offered to advertiser customers.

“We collect data based on the semantic analysis of our contents and the behaviour of visitors in Alma’s network. We seek the interests of groups of people, not individuals,” says Development Manager Merja Pyhälä from Alma Media Solutions.


In print media, such information is more difficult to get, which is why data collection mostly happens in digital media – at least for now.

“We are looking for target groups. In our network, we try and find those who are interested in topics such as cars, real estate, gardening, fashion or wining and dining. We monitor browsers that have been used for certain actions. In other words, we focus on anonymous target groups that contain certain kinds of people who are interested in certain kinds of topics,” Pyhälä says.

“In addition to browser behaviour monitoring, we conduct a survey a couple of times a year to study the socio-demographics of our target groups. The sample is usually quite large, about 30,000 respondents. On the basis of the survey, we create a statistical model to define socio-demographic attributes for all the browser profiles visiting our network.”

“We are looking for same sorts of people. If a browser shows that the user is a woman who behaves like this and reads these kinds of articles, we can assume that another user behaving the same way is also a woman.” In practice this means monitoring what browsers are used for and where. Analysing this data will produce information that is accurate enough for targeted advertising.

Relevant advertising

For advertisers, accurate and extensive collection and processing of data is important for finding and reaching the desired audiences. The customer’s own data can also be used for this purpose. Pyhälä is sure that accurate data will also benefit consumers. It will provide them with suitable and informative advertising. “This is how I see advertising: useful information for me. Whatever your interests, you will receive targeted, relevant advertising.”

Data use has developed fast during the last few years. “We can now process huge masses of data files. The trade has developed fast and will keep doing so. We will also have to consider the difference between data that is accurate enough and too accurate, because that could result in target groups that are too small,” Pyhälä says.

Legislation will set its own limits. The data protection directive has been replaced by the more powerful General Data Protection Regulation. It will be implemented in 2018 after a transition period. “We shall have to inform consumers about matters such as how we use the information collected about them. And we naturally observe all applicable laws.”

How and what sort of data can be used to target advertising with the new regulation is now being considered at Alma. “Instead of selling raw data to the customer, we commercialise data together with advert viewings. This will also be our business concept in future.”

Date: June 16, 2016 
Theme: Solutions
Text: Riitta Nikkola
Photos: Ville Rinne