In Upfront 2019, look for the canary in the coal mine -- the early signs of a power shift from network sales groups to agency/brand buying organizations. A new study among 750 advertiser and agency executives by The Myers Report has uncovered an unexpected undercurrent among leading brand marketers that could be a canary in the coal mine for all those involved in the Upfront ecosystem. For the past several strong Upfront seasons, there's been an increased focus on data and analytics as the primary Upfront story, replacing the historic emphasis on programming schedules and buyer/seller relationships. While content remains a staple of most Upfront presentations, the movement toward targeted impressions vs. content environment will be more present this year. Leading TV networks have successfully been encouraging buyers to adopt a content-agnostic model that spreads budgets across multiple screens and content sources. Media agencies are equally invested in this shift as they introduce their own data resources, often integrated with their clients' first-party data. And many of the largest advertisers are moving programmatic and automated buying in-house and opening their arms to new vendors who promise greater targeting capabilities and increased cost efficiencies. Ironically, just as the TV industry is delivering on two-plus decades of addressable technology and data promises, marketers are joining together and, with their agencies, shifting their attention back to content and trust. MyersBizNet members can scroll down to read more or access The Myers Report online.
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