Turner is First to Apply Watson Technology to Broadcast Advertising Sales

Turner is continuing to invest in resources that allow agencies and marketers to have access to powerful insights resulting in stronger business outcomes. As part of that effort, today it was announced that Turner Incite, the company’s core intelligence platform for advertising sales, is now fueled by the specific advertising sales technologies of the IBM Watson platform and advanced predictive analytics from MarketShare, a Neustar solution.  The addition of the cognitive solution tool –marks a first for broadcast advertising sales, while the partnership with MarketShare builds on the breakthrough planning and forecasting offerings the companies launched in early 2015.

“Turner is investing in innovation that allows our partners to have access to real time intelligence leading to faster and smarter business decisions,” said Michael Strober, executive vice president, Client Strategy and Ad Innovation, Turner. “By fueling Turner Incite with Watson Technology and MarketShare, and continuing to enhance our content and data solutions, we are further enabling clients to achieve their goals across an array of next generation portfolio capabilities.” 

Turner Incite is an advanced intelligence platform built by Turner and now powered by IBM Watson and MarketShare to provide a next generation approach to client insights and industry intelligence. The tool fuels a recommendation of best advertising solutions that will lead to the highest impact for a marketer’s key business objectives.

Turner has aligned with IBM to develop a cognitive business tool and solution recommendation engine. IBM’s state-of-the-art cognitive technology enables greater collaboration between humans and systems, providing the ability to communicate in natural language and analyze massive amounts of data to deliver insights more quickly.

This solution will:

  • Obtain actionable insights about advertisers and trends in their respective industries from news feeds, analyst reports and social media
  • Analyze advertiser’s historical advertising spend to uncover alternative ad spending strategies that project forward looking business requirements and competition
  • Learn from user feedback to provide relevant information for brand profiling and offering solutions to advertisers
  • Assist Turner account teams to become trusted advisors to their advertisers

“This solution addresses one of the timeless objectives of marketing leaders—infusing new levels of data and science into advertising decisions,” said Adam Steinberg, vice president, IBM Cognitive Business Solutions. “Armed with deep, fact-based recommendations, Turner will hone the precision of every advertising recommendation, and in turn, lift the impact of the customers who place advertising on Turner’s award-winning programming.”

Turner will also continue to utilize Turner Investment Advisor (TIA), by MarketShare, a planning and allocation investment tool that optimizes budgets and quantifies the P&L impact for marketers, leveraging billions of market observations and measurements. TIA recommends the most efficient allocation based on business target goals to drive the highest impact on sales. Building on last year’s partnership, Turner will now expand intelligence to double the amount of categories in 2016.

“Turner is at the forefront of the analytics-driven revolution within media companies,” said Wes Nichols, co-founder of MarketShare and now, Senior Vice President, Chief Strategy Officer at Neustar. “Turner is working hand-in-hand with advertisers to provide radical transparency, and to lead a shift a way from proxy metrics like ‘eyeballs’ in favor of hard insights on how media buys determine business outcomes. MarketShare is proud to deliver the analytics and software technology that makes these trailblazing efforts possible.”

To help bring Turner Incite to life for clients, Turner has appointed James Russo to the newly-developed role of senior vice president, Client Strategy & Development. Reporting to Strober, Russo will closely align with Turner’s Client Insights group, a division within Turner Research, to make recommendations to clients based on an insight-driven selling approach. This highly-critical leadership position will focus on account planning and strategy for clients, aligning with the sales teams to build out client specific strategies utilizing insights and analytics. Russo makes up the second half of the Client Strategy and Ad Innovation team, under Strober. Dan Aversano continues as senior vice president of Ad Innovation and Programmatic Solutions, as announced in last year’s sales division restructure.

“With James’ vast experience across marketing, sales, client development and thought leadership, he will play a vital role enabling clients to build out their strategies utilizing these tools,” added Strober.

Russo is one of today’s leading experts on consumer attitudes and behavior, prominently and frequently featured in the media. He comes to Turner from Nielsen where he spent the last thirteen years of his career. In his most recent role as senior vice president of global consumer insights, he was charged with integrating the company’s efforts to leverage and customize its broad array of Watch and Buy insights, as well as analytics to enhance growth strategies for the company’s global clients. One of Russo’s main areas of expertise is developing industry-leading thought leadership from an in-depth understanding of the dynamics of the changing consumer and marketplace, thus enabling clients to maximize opportunities and minimize risk. During his time with Nielsen, he also led global analytic teams which delivered insights into the “Women of Tomorrow,” “Maximizing Advertising Effectiveness,” “The Millennial Movement: Reaching the We Generation” and “Connected Commerce: The Convergence of Physical and Digital Retailing.”

About IBM Watson: Pioneering a New Era of Computing
IBM Watson represents a new era in computing called cognitive computing. Watson continuously learns, gaining in value and knowledge over time, from previous interactions. With the help of Watson, organizations are leveraging cognitive computing to transform industries, help professionals do their jobs better, and solve important challenges. To advance Watson, IBM has two dedicated business units: IBM Watson, established for the development of cloud-based cognitive computing technologies that commercialize "artificial intelligence," and IBM Watson Health, dedicated to providing crisp data to doctors, researchers, insurers and others to surface new data insights and deliver personalized healthcare. For more information on IBM Watson, visit: and

About MarketShare
MarketShare, a Neustar Solution, combines advanced analytics technology, scientific leadership and deep domain expertise to enable large companies to measure, predict and dramatically improve Marketing’s impact on revenue. MarketShare’s clients use its analytics and tools to direct tens of billions of marketing investment dollars globally. Learn more at

About Neustar
Neustar, Inc. (NYSE:NSR) is the first real-time provider of cloud-based information services, enabling marketing and IT security professionals to promote and protect their businesses. With a commitment to privacy and neutrality, Neustar operates complex data registries and uses its expertise to deliver actionable, data-driven insights that help clients make high-value business decisions in real time, one customer interaction at a time. More information is available at

About Turner Ad Sales
Turner Ad Sales monetizes the company's portfolio of leading news, sports, kids and entertainment properties through advertising and brand activations. Attracting a wide-scale audience of diverse consumers, the collection includes leading media brands CNN, HLN, TBS, TNT, truTV, Cartoon Network, Boomerang, Adult Swim, Bleacher Report and Turner Sports' high-profile coverage of the NBA, MLB, NCAA and PGA. In addition, the company has digital sales partnerships with the NBA, NASCAR, NCAA and PGA.

Turner, a Time Warner company creates and programs branded news; entertainment; kids and young adult; and sports media environments on television and other platforms for consumers around the world.

Publicity Contacts:

Jenn Toner
VP of Business Communications, Turner

Karen Davis
Media Relations, IBM

Donna Estrin
Direct of PR, Neustar