“Thanks to Cxense we have the flexibility we need to create outstanding campaigns that drive revenue for our advertisers and ourselves.”

Geert Desager 

Strategy Director, Mediahuis

Inside Mediahuis’ 12-month sprint to supercharged advertising ROI

An inventive data scientist with the right tools made all the difference


Leading European media company Mediahuis, which runs over 40 of the biggest news, classifieds, and career websites in Belgium and the Netherlands wanted to create an advertising experience that could match the duopoly’s level of granularity while offering a level of service and flexibility the giants never could.

They began with a few advantages. To start, in an area with 6.4 million residents, 4.4 million of them are registered Mediahuis readers, that’s almost 70 percent. This large local audience logs 320 million page views per month on the networks sites, a brand safe environment trusted by readers and advertisers alike. But Mediahuis lacked the data-literacy and platform technology it needed to integrate siloed data from each publication. They called on Cxense to help them bridge the gap.


Like most publishers, Mediahuis had reams of data culled from millions of reader interactions with its sites each month. To create a unified, segmentable audience, they would first need to integrate all data onto a single platform. They would also need artificial intelligence and machine learning organize, enrich and analyze that data in an efficient manner. Only then would they be able to achieve the results its advertising clients wanted.

Even with a large in-house team, a publisher might be able to build a unified data platform in 18 months. But Mediahuis wanted to be up and running within a year. Cxense’s out-of-the-box DMP offered Mediahuis not only the quick start it wanted but the flexibility it needed to create the outstanding campaigns that would draw advertisers and raise revenues.

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First-party data enables the niche segments advertisers want

Mediahuis’ investment in data has paid huge dividends. “Our advertisers have always appreciated the close relationship we have with our readers,” says Jessica Bulthé. “With the help of Cxense, we’ve built targeting and reporting capabilities that rival Google and Facebook. It’s so advanced advertisers are surprised we’ve been building it for only a year.”

Mediahuis now runs multiple, custom-audience campaigns simultaneously, each day, across its network of sites. “We currently have more than 30 live pixels running on our sites for various brand campaigns. It’s going pretty well, there’s a high demand.” By using Cxense to create nuanced audience segments, Mediahuis has discovered its specialty as a mid-funnel ad seller. "Cxense has helped us better understand our true value to advertisers and build ad products that meet their specific business needs,” Desager says. “Thanks to Cxense we have the flexibility we need to create outstanding campaigns that drive revenue for our advertisers and ourselves."