Partnerships Drive Data-Enabled Buying at Scale, says FreeWheel Video Marketplace Report

By Comcast Advertising InSites Archives
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In FreeWheel's Video Marketplace Report: Q2 2019, we examined how partnerships and interoperability are driving the growth of premium video. These are key catalysts for driving remarkable growth in audience-targeted campaigns, which increased 82 percent over the prior year.

"Advertisers want to use television as a full-funnel solution that marries the best of traditional television with increased data-driven capabilities for targeting and measurement," David Kline, executive vice president of Charter Communications, said during Cannes Lions 2019, as part of Comcast Advertising's On Addressability kick-off. This articulates the value proposition of premium video as its full range of capabilities become available to advertisers. However, for premium video to realize its full-funnel potential, industry players must work to deliver against three pillars in a world of convergence:

  1. Scale: Content that reaches a broad set of viewers wherever and whenever they watch
  2. Sophistication: Technology to match viewers with data, dynamic ad insertion, and delivery measurement
  3. Simplicity: Easy-to-access-and-execute transaction channels that reduce friction for media buyers and sellers

Let's take a closer look at each.

Scale – Building Interoperability

In the first half of 2019, players across the premium video ecosystem partnered to help advance television's data-enabled future. These industry initiatives seek to promote interoperability and limit walled gardens and silos. As an example, the U.S.-based smart TV company VIZIO spearheaded "Project OAR" (Open Addressable Ready), a consortium dedicated to the development of new standards for addressable advertising on connected TVs (CTVs). At launch, participants included AMC Networks, CBS, Discovery, Disney Media Networks, FreeWheel, Hearst Television, Inscape, NBCUniversal (NBCU), WarnerMedia, and Xandr. The consortium is designed to benefit audiences and marketers alike.

"Through Project OAR, [we] will combine relevance with reach to deliver a better experience to our viewers and better ROI for our advertisers," said Mike Dean, senior vice president, advanced advertising and automation at CBS.

Sophistication – Laying the Technical Foundation

At this year's Cannes Lions festival, Comcast Advertising, with the support of Charter and Cox, announced On Addressability, an industry-wide initiative to bring greater addressability to the TV sector, delivering a sound, scalable, and effective solution for marketers. While achieving full addressability will involve a variety of players, the first step for On Addressability is to help content distributors with the technical how-to of enabling addressability.

Simplicity – Unifying Audiences

Ampersand and OpenAP entered into an agreement to allow national TV advertisers to tap into the advanced audience segment definitions of OpenAP across the 85 million households available through Ampersand. In a joint statement, Ampersand and OpenAP noted, "This initiative is the first of several new data and measurement programs the two companies are developing to support a more open ecosystem for comprehensive TV buying."

The initiatives highlighted here demonstrate the need for interoperability to build scale, sophistication, and simplicity in the premium video ecosystem. Moving forward, we expect to see more examples of this partnering approach, as the TV industry seeks to rapidly deliver value.

For a deeper understanding of the varied factors influencing the evolution of premium video, both in the U.S. and in Europe, download the FreeWheel Video Marketplace Report: Q2 2019.

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