An introduction to offsite retail media


Grocery stores and websites present brands with an incredible advertising opportunity, giving them access to millions of customers who are already looking to buy. Today, however, retail media doesn't stop with retailer-owned properties. With the right approach, advertisers can extend their reach further still, using data-driven insights to engage customers across a range of other channels.

In the latest in a series of posts exploring the realities of retail media today, Ciara Schmidt discusses the subject of “offsite” media, and how the Tesco Media & Insight Platform can be used to communicate with shoppers across a range of partner-owned platforms.

At its core, retail media revolves around two things: inventory and data. The first of those, of course, provides advertisers with extensive reach across a range of physical and digital assets. It’s the second, though, that enables the deep insights into customer behaviours that sets retail media apart from other advertising disciplines. First-party (or retailer-owned) data gives brands an unprecedented level of precision when it comes to audience targeting.

What if you could take those insights and apply them to other media channels, though? What if you could target customers based on their purchases even when they’re browsing outside of a retailer’s ecosystem? That’s where the concept of “offsite” – i.e. away from the retailer’s website – media comes in, combining first-party data with third-party media in order to create a truly cohesive opportunity for brand advertisers.

As detailed in the last post in this series, onsite media relates specifically to advertising opportunities within a retailer’s own environment (i.e. their website or store). Offsite, on the other hand, speaks to the opportunity to engage customers on websites, apps, and social media channels outside of the retail environment. Within the Tesco Media & Insight Platform, that’s a capability that comes under the banner of “Partners”.

At present, Partners brings together five data-driven advertising opportunities covering everything from key social networks through to major broadcast media.

  • 1. Offsite Targeted Display

    Tesco Clubcard data makes it possible to create a single view of customers, combining their online and offline purchases into a complete picture of their shopping behaviours. That makes it easy and efficient for brands to engage with more of the “right” shoppers – those most likely to buy their products.

    By partnering with media owners, the Tesco Media & Insight Platform enables the anonymous matching of a customer’s Tesco Clubcard ID with their online profile. From there, advertisers have the opportunity to engage customers as they browse their favourite websites and social media sites, with placements linking through to either or the brand’s own website.

  • 2. Broadcaster Video on Demand (BVOD) in partnership with ITV

    ITVX is ITV’s new streaming hub, blending live TV with an assortment of films and programmes available on-demand. Our BVOD partnership embraces the same audience-centric principles as Offsite Targeted Display, giving brands the ability to engage with specific Tesco audiences as they catch up on their favourite content.

    Our partnership with ITVX is underpinned by programmatic advertising platform PlanetV, which provides a wide range of customisable buying options.

  • 3. Meta Audiences

    Covering both Facebook and Instagram, Meta Audiences gives brand advertisers the ability to share their Tesco audiences directly with their Meta Ads Manager account. Available as a self-service tool, Meta Audiences also provides comprehensive forecasting capabilities, allowing users to understand the predicted performance of a campaign before setting it live.

  • 4. Pinterest

    Pinterest users are 66% more likely than others to try new brands[1], making it an incredibly valuable channel for advertisers. By activating their Tesco audiences within Pinterest, brand marketers can deliver highly targeted campaigns across static, video, carousel ads, and more.

  • 5. The Trade Desk

    The Trade Desk is an industry-leading programmatic media buying platform, and our partnership enables brands to activate their Tesco audiences on premium media inventory across more than 225 websites and brand-safe partner channels. Ad formats include rich media, video content, animations, and static banners, catering to a wide range of marketing goals.

Across all of these channels, closed-loop reporting matches up online and in-store sales with ad exposure by user, providing clear proof of performance.

In addition to the opportunities outlined above, Partners also includes two offsite-focused measurement services. Sales Lift, created in partnership with Live Ramp, gives brands an effective way to gauge the performance of campaigns delivered outside of the Tesco retail media ecosystem. Similarly, Sky Media Measurement helps them understand the impact of their TV-focused activities.

One of the most enticing aspects of retail media is that it provides brands with the ability to be laser targeted with their spending, focusing in on the key audiences most likely to deliver returns. With offsite (and Partners), CPGs can extend that capability further still, ensuring that they apply the same level of data-driven diligence to an even broader set of channels and placements.

While it already offers a broad ecosystem of advertising opportunities, Partners isn’t done growing yet, either. With plans to expand our partner network over the year ahead, we’re looking forward to giving brands all-new opportunities to speak to their customers across the sofa-to-store journey. We’ll look forward to sharing more on that soon.

Next time, we’ll explore the subject of experiential marketing – and how inspiration plays a vital role in customer engagement.

[1] Hootsuite – Pinterest Ads: A simple guide for 2023