Audience and Calculated Attribute Scheduling

Mathias Kolind -

This article aims to give you insights into how Audiences and Calculated Attributes are calculated and scheduled.  

First of all, its important to note that there are two types of calculations:

  1. Local calculation
  2. Scheduled calculation

Local Calculation

A local calculation is what you get when you click the "Refresh" button in the Audience Builder.
This calculation simply evaluates your audience and shows you a count in the UI as a one-time occurrence. It does not activate a scheduled calculation of your Audience.  

Scheduled Calculation

A Scheduled calculation does two things:

  1. Just like a local calculation, it evaluates your audience and shows you a result count in the UI.
  2. A scheduled calculation sends along the evaluation of the audience for synchronization with all activations to which the audience is attached. A scheduled activation generally takes slightly longer to calculate, than a local calculation.

When a scheduled calculation runs, it should take an estimate of 5-10 minutes, before update of persons in the audience is sent from Raptor's system to each of the activation systems.

Please note: How long each activation system takes to parse data is out depends on the receiving system.

Scheduling Intervals

Audiences and Calculated Attributes can be scheduled in different intervals. These scheduling intervals are chosen automatically by the Raptor system and are individual for each Audience / Calculated Attribute depending on the time ranges, the Audience / Calculated Attribute uses.

There are three scheduling interval options:

  1. Every hour
  2. At 05.00 and 18.00 CET (twice a day scheduling).
  3. At 23:59 CET (once a day scheduling).

When choosing which calculation schedule to use, the Raptor system does the following:

  1. looks at each statement block, as well as each calculated attribute used in the audience.
  2. Finds the statement that has the smallest time range.
    For example within last 1 hour, is the smallest time range you can choose. All Time is the biggest.
  3. if the smallest time range is less than "within last 5 hours", it uses "Every Hour" scheduling.
    If it's less than 24 hours, it uses twice a day scheduling.
    If it's none of the above, then its scheduled daily.

If there are no time ranges in the audience, for example if its an audience only using Person data, it uses the "Once a day scheduling" by default.

Only Audiences / Calculated Attributes that are attached to an activation are included in the scheduled calculation and thereby automatically updated. 

Calculation Queues

All Local Calculations share the same queue, so if many Audiences are queued at approximately the same time, the audience engine will only calculate up to three at a time. This means, the Audience that was queued last, might take more than 2 minutes to calculate, due to the Audience being in the back of the queue.

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