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CES: Tech Giants Say Data Is Key to Entertainment Marketing

Execs from Facebook, Google and Pinterest testified to the importance of data coming through their platforms for entertainment marketers at a panel Wednesday at the Variety Entertainment Summit, held at the International Consumer Electronics Show confab in Las Vegas.

“From an entertainment marketer standpoint, we have a tremendous amount of data on what’s taking off and what’s driving engagement,” said Jim Underwood, head of entertainment strategy at Facebook. “We’re at a place now where we can help solve a problem: that there is such a volume of content that the audience is looking for solutions to help find the content that matters to them.”

Underwood said a common misperception about data usage is that entertainment marketers have to fight the inclination to chase buzz. Angie Barrick, Google head of industry, media and entertainment, concurred, adding that chasing the wrong trends can lead marketers into a “digital dungeon.”

“We caution people — especially entertainment marketers — that data isn’t the be-all-end-all,” she said. “We encourage people to look for long-term trends.”

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For Pinterest, that means paying close attention to the images derived from film and TV content that get pinned or repinned. Tram Nguyen, head of media partnerships at Pinterest, noted that her company’s partners use those signals to target everything from emails to merchandising strategies.

“A lot of brands can use that information how they might market to those users in a compelling way,” she said.

The panel was moderated by Todd Spangler, New York digital editor at Variety.

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