How Pret cut ad data wastage by 48% to reduce CO2 emissions in its latest video display campaign

The high street coffee chain was able to accurately measure and reduce CO2 emissions for its new programmatic video display campaign via an innovative new partnership from Cedara, SeenThis and Croud.

The challenge

Pret A Manger wanted to find a way to deliver its latest video display ad for its Club Pret loyalty scheme in a way that reduced data wastage and CO2 emissions, often associated with buying and selling media inventory on automated ad exchanges. 

A report published by IAB Europe earlier this year revealed that the digital advertising industry accounts for between 3.5 and 4% of global carbon emissions – almost twice that of the aviation industry

Pret also identified that reducing data waste and being more targeted is also better for campaign performance and output of digital ad campaigns.

The solution

To achieve this, Pret worked with carbon intelligence platform Cedara and reduction technology solution SeenThis alongside agency Croud. 

The industry-first collaboration combined carbon emissions measurement for campaigns via Cedara with a third-party on SeenThis to accurately and automatically determine the actual emissions reduction on campaigns.

By leveraging SeenThis’ integration into Cedara, Pret’s marketing team could estimate the impact of switching to SeenThis’ proprietary streaming technology during the planning stage. 

They could also measure the overall campaign footprint, and quantify avoided emissions after activating SeenThis’ technology. This significantly reduces the data transfer for video creatives compared to running creatives of corresponding quality using conventional technology. 

David Shaw, CEO of Cedara, said: "We are proud to partner with leading companies advancing the industry towards Ad Net Zero. This collaboration underscores the importance of data-driven decision-making in the pursuit of environmental sustainability."

Croud recognised the importance of measuring and reducing the carbon footprint associated with its clients' advertising campaigns. In pursuit of this objective, Croud worked with Cedara to measure Pret's media emissions comprehensively. 

Luke Smith, Founder and CEO of Croud, added: "We are committed to delivering exceptional results for our clients while minimising the environmental impact of our campaigns. Our collaboration with Cedara and SeenThis has allowed us to achieve both objectives. This partnership exemplifies the power of data-driven insights and innovative technology in achieving sustainable advertising practices."

The results

Overall the campaign saw a 16% reduction in emissions from ad delivery for the Pret programmatic video display campaign (see a sample below).

Key results include: 

  • Through the use of SeenThis’ video delivery technology, Pret was able to avoid 2,343 GB data wastage, or 48%, compared to running the same quality creative using conventional ad serving technology.

  • When applying Cedara’s models, the carbon footprint related to creative delivery was calculated to 749 kg CO2e, which, when assuming the above lower data transfer would result in overall avoided emissions of 121 kg, or approximately 16% related to creative delivery.

  • If also incorporating ad selection and overhead emissions across the media supply chain for campaign measurement which includes business travel, energy, offices, and non-media Scope 3 emissions, Pret’s total footprint was 8,354 kg CO2e.

This strategic collaboration represents a significant step towards more sustainable advertising and highlights the importance of leveraging technology that can minimise carbon emissions in creative ad delivery. 

Cedara’s collaboration with SeenThis has also helped support the launch of Cedara’s Reduction Marketplace. 

“We are delighted to provide access to Pret’s emissions related data to help them in their efforts in becoming more sustainable,” says Jesper Benon, CEO of SeenThis. “With the launch of Cedara’s Reduction Marketplace, which measures a company’s overall emissions, this collaboration fits perfectly into that narrative, as creative delivery is an important part of the puzzle when it comes to reaching a net zero objective."