Frequent representation at Interactive Advertising Bureau events is getting to be a habit with Samsung. At IAB's PlayFronts on March 8, the smart TV set vendor displayed its game hub on stage and in a separate viewing area. Two months later, and for the second consecutive year, Samsung opened day two of the IAB's annual NewFronts with a morning showcase of its latest smart TV applications looking for advance advertiser commitments. The company's high-tech public demonstration venue, located on W. 13th St. in Manhattan, served as home base for this event.
The Big Message: Expect Samsung to expand interactive, shoppable and content-driven ad opportunities in the coming year, powered by new features and additions to Samsung TV Plus, the bundle with more than 250 channels running round the clock. "Our goal is to deliver the content, scale and innovations you need for results," said Michael Scott, Brand Sales Vice President with Samsung Ads. "Outcomes and efficiencies are more important than ever. There's no room for wasted spending."
Hosts: A mix of Samsung Ads and parent Samsung Electronics USA executives shared hosting duties.
What Worked: Boiling the presentation down to a compact, to-the-point affair lasting less than 40 minutes. Each speaker mixed brief comments on the new initiatives under their guidance with slides and videos fleshing out the details.
What Also Worked: A roundtable discussion on the state of TV content and the consequences of distributing that content among smart TV households. IAB Chief Executive Officer David Cohen exchanged views on both subjects with A+E Networks Executive Vice President, Content Licensing and Business Development Mark Garner and Vevo Sales and Marketing President Kevin McGurn.
What Didn't Work: Not having room for an advertiser testimonial dealing with how a Samsung smart TV app or Samsung TV Plus-distributed channel was beneficial to a brand, or participation in the roundtable from an advertiser/ad agency executive, providing counterpoint to the programmers on hand.
Data Points: Samsung has had the top-selling smart TV brand worldwide for the last 17 years; in fact, three out of every four U.S. households have at least one company-made device or appliance. Viewing time for Samsung TV Plus-carried channels jumped 65 percent in recent months. Vevo, according to McGurn, now has more than 800,000 music videos in its catalogue.
News: KERV Interactive, the artificial intelligence-powered technology outlet working with megacontent service Peacock on its MustShop TV project, will partner with Samsung Ads on a set of automated shoppable/commerce ad formats. On the audience measurement front, the company will create and operate a viewership database for Samsung TV Plus and other smart TV-delivered services. Another ongoing research project about to get underway is "TV & Your Community," where a panel of TV viewers across the U.S. will have their TV habits monitored. "This will allow advertisers to put linear TV and (smart) TV on the same platform," explained Justin Evans, Samsung Ads Head of Analytics and Insights. Four advertisers will work with Samsung on a "TV & Your Community" pilot study. If all works well, 5,000 people will be panel members by the end of March 2024. Upcoming Samsung TV Plus new channels include Conan O'Brien TV, featuring highlights of O'Brien's NBC and TBS late-night series, and at least one multicultural news network.
Parting Words: "Artificial intelligence and machine learning are only as powerful as the data platforms they are part of." -- Michael Scott, Samsung Ads Vice President of Brand Sales
"You have to pay for water these days. My shows are free. Free. Check them out!" -- Conan O'Brien, appearing on tape to showcase his new Samsung TV Plus-distributed network
"The (multichannel bundles) are the new MVPDs and the most economical way to present your content." -- Vevo Sales and Distribution President Kevin McGurn
"Smart TVs are a great way to extend the life cycles of our brands. What's ahead? More platforms and diversity. More unique formats and original content." -- Mark Garner, A+E Networks Executive Vice President, Content Licensing and Business Development
"We're just starting to scratch the surface of what AI can do for content development, for both large audiences and niche audiences. It's a paradox to figure out." -- IAB Chief Executive Officer David Cohen
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