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Vox Media unveils updates to its first-party data platform, Forte following acquisition of Group Nine

With Group Nine audiences and data now integrated into Forte, brands get single view of audience insights and behavior across the expanded portfolio

Thursday, June 9 – Today, at Vox Media’s Vox Media Now event, the company announced new updates to its first-party data platform, Forte following the recent merger with Group Nine, allowing brands to now activate across its expanded portfolio of brands, which reach more than 500 million people every month, across its websites and social platforms. Forte’s data models now include highly engaged social audiences from former Group Nine’s brands, giving additional scale to the audience behavior and insights that brands can utilize to reach and connect with audiences in contextually relevant environments.

The update also includes the roll out of purchase intent segments, giving advertisers more direct ways of targeting audiences when they are in a purchasing mindset, across Vox Media’s editorial networks. The newly available purchase intent segments will deliver unique insights to advertisers, gathered from Vox Media’s growing affiliate marketing business via New York Magazine’s the Strategist and the Cut, The Verge, and more. From the merger with Group Nine, Vox Media also now has access to conversion data across categories, drawn from the performance marketing solution, now known as VM Connect, formerly G9 Direct.

The updates to Forte come only months after Vox Media officially merged with Group Nine, in February 2022. The addition of Group Nine’s properties give Vox Media additional scale, in a broader range of categories. Brands can now tap into an even more informed set of data points across the expanded portfolio, across brands that span news, politics, entertainment, tech, sports, food, gaming, women’s lifestyle, fashion, travel, and more. Forte can also be activated across publishers within Vox Media’s programmatic marketplace, Concert, following a 2021 update to the platform, which now includes the Group Nine portfolio.

“Our biggest goal in building Forte, a single, scaled first-party solution, is to ensure we are always driving outcomes,” said Megan Walton, VP, Revenue Product & Commerce. “By including Group Nine data points in our platform, we’re now able to provide clients a direct connection to what they’re looking for: people who are interested in purchasing their products, as opposed to making inferences based on outdated notions of age and gender.”

Forte synthesizes thousands of first-party data signals collected via Vox Media’s direct relationships with its millions of users, without requiring sharing personally identifiable information, or logging in. Since launching its latest update to its suite of first-party data solutions, including Forte Optimization, Vox Media’s advertising partners who use Forte, have seen up to a 2.5x performance lift in metrics, including CTR & VCR.