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Cancer Treatment Centers of America® Used Addressable TV to Deliver Critical Messaging to Patients

Quick Take:

During COVID-19, Cancer Treatment Centers of America® needed to reach potential patients in new ways.
Learn how Merkle, used first-party data and top-notch analytics to help CTCA:

  • Transition national and local cable spend to addressable TV (ATV) campaigns, leveraging audience targeting to have more control over impression delivery at a household level.
  • Expand its performance media strategy to include ATV, enabling better campaign optimizations to increase efficiency and funnel volumes.
  • Accurately attribute ATV ads to understand campaign effectiveness and optimization opportunities.


Cancer Treatment Centers of America® (CTCA) is a national, comprehensive cancer care network with three hospitals around the country. It’s founded on the idea of personalized cancer care, where every patient gets a unique treatment plan tailored to them. CTCA seeks to continuously integrate new scientific advances to ensure patients have more options for a personal treatment plan. Their oncologists, nurses, and other clinicians offer a level of expertise that comes from working with cancer patients every day. CTCA is a part of City of Hope, a comprehensive cancer center designated by the National Cancer Institute and a founding member of the National Comprehensive Cancer Network.

The COVID-19 pandemic created immense concern with travel safety. For cancer patients, this meant looking more regionally than nationally for treatment options. Historically, CTCA invested heavily in national TV because the channel’s broad reach effectively drove patients to hospitals. However, with the new realities of the pandemic, they needed to adapt to reach patients with lifesaving messaging. By combining previous learnings around audience, impression frequency, and geo targeting, CTCA successfully pivoted into addressable TV in an effective, HIPAA-compliant way.


CTCA activated a regional addressable TV (ATV) campaign to reach cable households in a way that could be personalized at scale, using learnings from other channels to drive success across three main campaign areas:

  1. Audience
  2. Impression Frequency
  3. Geography/Locations

CTCA targeted a proven third-party audience that outperformed demographic audiences to increase the likelihood for engagement with the brand. They also used frequency cap insights from tests on connected TV, which translated well to ATV given the similar consumer experience and ad length options. These approaches helped CTCA minimize campaign inefficiency while optimizing performance during the move from national cable buys to addressable TV. The team also activated across different providers to identify the best reach in the most important DMAs, while managing the different CPMs across each platform.

CTCA used its own first-party data to analyze how COVID-19 impacted their business metrics and patient travel patterns. The data suggested that a regional approach would be more efficient than targeting all 210 designated market areas (DMAs). Therefore, marketing focused on approximately 160 DMAs where patients could potentially travel to a hospital, within reason.

By combining these components, CTCA launched an ATV campaign across 160 DMAs with proven audience and impression delivery strategies, measuring the campaign using Merkle’s advanced TV closed-loop reporting and attribution solution as well as Merkury’s identity solution via a clean room.



Households reached in CTCA’s target audience, representing 90% of the total possible universe. We efficiently achieved these results without the cost and barriers of local or national cable campaigns.


Improvement in cost per patient acquisition numbers while also increasing patient acquisition volume. Incremental conversions were achieved as just 7% of conversions attributed to ATV were also exposed to CTCA’s BAU campaigns.


Marketing expenses by eliminating national and local cable TV spend from CTCA’s media mix, resulting in millions of dollars in savings and significantly greater spend efficiencies.


Optimized linear TV strategies by DMA with data-driven insights

Discover how we did it. Contact us today.

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