KE Hub Triage Workshop: Sopra Steria

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KE Hub Triage Workshop: Sopra Steria

 17 May 2024
1000 BST


KE Hub online Triage Workshops are organised with support from the ICMS


The next KE Hub online Triage Workshop will be presented by Sopra Steria.

Optimising TV audience engagement and media strategies

The challenge of optimising advertising and promotions for television programming is as old as the medium itself. This is done using complex, but industry standard, data sets. To gather data, statistics on the viewing habits of the nation are recorded using the tried and tested method of viewing panels made up of sample households throughout the country. This approach generates granular records that capture who was watching a particular broadcast at a particular time. The demographic profile of viewers is recorded along with weights that are extrapolated to enable estimates for the whole population. The recent proliferation of channels and the increased broadcast options of streaming, on demand and time-shifted viewing options have made this challenge even more complex for the industry.

Problem statement:

Content broadcasters are continuously acquiring new content to air and, as with any new content, their goal is to maximise viewing by their intended (target) audiences. To increase the viewing figures, broadcasters allocate promotional videos of upcoming programmes to planned breaks (spots) in programme schedules. The promos have the objective of “enticing” potential viewers to view the full programme. The correct (optimal) scheduling to achieve this outcome is a complex, and still largely manual, process. It requires identification of potential viewers and then exposing them to the required promos, at the right frequency, to get them to watch a new show. All of this work is reliant on historical viewing data.

Research objective:

The main objective of this research problem is to maximise viewership of new programmes through optimal scheduling of promotional spots. We aim to explore scientific methods and best practices to

1. Identify potential programme viewers

2. Determine the best time to promote TV productions to them

3. Forward projecting the final number of viewers

The expectation is that a combination of historical viewing data, demographic data, and future programming timetables will be the inputs for an optimisation model. The outputs from the model will then allocate time slots for promos in the broadcast schedule. This is likely to require a combination of operational research/optimisation techniques, statistics and predictive analytics. Sensitivity analysis and comparison of alternative strategies can be used to design an intelligent framework for optimising audience engagement.

Academic mathematical scientists from KE Hub partner university departments are invited to take part in these workshops. If you would like to attend, please contact your local KE Champion to receive the meeting link or get in touch with the organisers, Lauren Hyndman and Diwei Zhou.



KE Hub Triage Workshops are informal discussion sessions where one B.I.G. Partner presents a challenge they are currently facing, with the aim of determining:

  1. What, if any, mathematical sciences approaches can be used to address the challenge?
  2. Who from the mathematical sciences community would like to take on the challenge?
  3. What mechanisms are most appropriate for driving the challenge forward?

The purpose of these workshops is to allow the B.I.G. Partner to engage directly with academic mathematical scientists to probe the scientific content of their proposed challenge. The environment is relaxed and interactive, and we encourage questions, clarifications and discussions throughout. You can find information on all upcoming and past workshops here.