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Deciding Factors: How Analytics Can Help With Talent Decision Making

3 minute read | June 2016

Finding the right fit for on-air talent—whether it be for a new television ad creative or as a replacement host of a hot morning talk show—is a tough job for talent decision makers these days. However, pinpointing the best personality to attract the right audience can drive big results.

After all, virtually every public personality—from film star to three-point draining basketball players—has a personal brand whose sphere of influence often carries well beyond the playing field or the silver screen. In short, there are many options for these content creators and talent decision makers to choose from, but even more to gain by knowing what fans of these celebrities watch, buy and do in order to have both ad and content messages stand out from the crowd.

Nielsen’s recent enhancement to N-Score—a syndicated solution that assesses the casting and endorsement potential of over a thousand celebrities (including actors, personalities, musicians and athletes)—will help industry players do that very thing. For the first time, N-Score will offer a “Fan Affinity” score that will quantify a celebrity’s fan base to fit particular content or brands, complementing intuition in order to help inform talent decisions with actionable metrics.

“Finding the right talent fit is crucial for brands, content creators and casting decision makers in order to stay competitive. Nielsen’s new Talent Analytics insights are now able to help provide the industry data-driven insights that will help with these often-tough casting and endorsement decisions,” says Michele Orlick, SVP Client Consulting, Nielsen.

In fact, a recent analysis from June 2016 that leveraged this new capability in Nielsen’s Talent Analytics suite of products looked at who some of the best celebrity talent might be for certain programming types.

A Morning Talk Show Host

Morning talk shows have been helping Americans wake up by featuring sunny television dispositions and a wide-array of content for decades. However, host changes are not uncommon, and talent decision makers continually seek personalities that can resonate with fans, drive audiences and cultivate the type of programming the appeals to advertisers as well. The Nielsen Talent Analytics analysis from June 2016 looked at potential talk show candidates and found two that might be a good fit.

A Creative Campaign for a Credit Card Travel Rewards Program

In this day and age, credit card rewards programs are virtually ubiquitous, with nearly every major financial institution touting one of their own—be it through everyday purchases or through travel. In fact, about a third of U.S. consumers say they use their smartphones to sign up for a rewards program after making purchases on their smartphone. Cutting through competitive clutter by finding the right spokesperson, who may have fans whose messages resonate with the most is what the Fan Affinity Score provides.

An Advertisement for a Hybrid Vehicle

A Nielsen Talent Analytics analysis evaluated celebrities who have a high N-Score, whose fan are likely to have a high Fan Affinity score for any “eco-friendly activity” and also scored high in “looking to buy a hybrid vehicle.” The study found that two TV actors, known for the dramatic and genre-defying programs they were associated with, could be best suited to tout the benefits of going green when choosing a new vehicle.

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