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The Right Analytics: The Dynamics Behind Nielsen’s Acquisition of Visual IQ

January 18, 2018 - By Anne Curtin, Sr. Director of Marketing, Visual IQ

The Right Analytics: The Dynamics Behind Nielsen’s Acquisition of Visual IQ

Ever wonder about the brains behind Visual IQ?

Last month, Visual IQ co-founders Manu Mathew and Anto Chittilappilly were featured in a cover story for the inaugural edition of Technopolis, the official campus magazine of IT Parks Kerala, India.

The article turns back the pages of time, to when Mathew and Chittilappilly were just two engineering graduates who set out to solve a data reporting efficiency problem. They soon came to realize that they were tackling one of the biggest challenges in martech – how to use data and technology to shine a spotlight on consumer behavior and marketing effectiveness.

“Visual IQ was born from my work while at an advertising agency,” says Mathew. “I was frustrated by the inability to use data efficiently to demonstrate how our campaigns impacted the agency’s overall business goals.”

Mathew knew that influences existed between different marketing channels and tactics, and set out to develop technology that would help quantify those synergies. With this insight, marketers could make better decisions about how to allocate their budget within and across channels, and ultimately maximize their return.

The duo's data analysis process, dubbed TrueAttribution, started to produce results. So, they packaged up the models and findings into TrueMetrics that answered the questions marketers had about the efficiency and effectiveness of their marketing spend. In the years that followed, the technology took root and the business continued to grow, generating year-over-year double digit growth in terms of customers, employees, revenue and profit.

When asked about the success of the business, Chittilappilly attributes it to “complementary skill sets, business knowledge and technical expertise.” But the turning point for the business, he said, “was when marketing attribution became a ‘must have’ solution for most marketing organizations across the globe.

In September 2017, after ten plus years building the Visual IQ business, the company was acquired by Nielsen, the global measurement and data analytics company. As for the entrepreneurial duo, they couldn’t be more excited. “When Anto and I founded the company ten years ago, we began a journey to help marketers win by giving them tools to discover the tactics and audiences behind their best performing marketing. Now, as part of the Nielsen family, we remain focused on that north star,” Manu added.

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