AT&T officially unveiled its “WatchTV” skinny bundle today, following its preliminary tease of it in late April. Though WatchTV only has 31 networks at launch, it’s a very respectable entertainment-focused group, including the newly acquired Time Warner networks, AMC, A&E, Food and HGTV, with select Viacom networks (BET, Comedy Central, etc) coming soon.
But the specifics of what’s included are a tangential; what’s most important to understand with WatchTV is that it is the latest, and most aggressive, salvo by AT&T to use “video as bait” to support its wireless business. This strategy has significant long-term implications for the TV industry.
I’m pleased to present the 424th edition of the VideoNuze podcast, with my weekly partner Colin Dixon of nScreenMedia.
At this past Tuesday’s VideoNuze Online Video Advertising Summit, Colin moderated a session, “Connected TVs’ Ad-Supported Future,” with Rich Calacci (Pluto TV), Jim Keller (Hulu), Frank Sinton (Beachfront Media) and Seth Walters (Roku) participating. In the first segment of this week’s podcast, we discuss the reasons panelists cited for why ads on connected TVs are so appealing to advertisers, among other topics.
We then transition to some of the highlights of the keynote interview with David Lawenda (EVP, Digital Sales and Strategy, CBS), with particular focus on his comments about advertisers’ reluctance to pay more just because ad loads are lighter. A range of TV networks are lightening their ad loads to provide a better experience compared to ad-free SVOD, but the benefits are uncertain according to David.
Finally, we touch on interesting data that Group Nine Media’s SVP of Ad Solutions and Innovation Hayden Lynch made in my interview with him around the difficulties of monetizing video distributed on platforms. Group Nine’s properties generate around 6 billion views/month, but only 10-20% of them are being monetized, which is pretty eye-opening.
Listen in to learn more!
Click here to listen to the podcast (24 minutes, 45 seconds)
Late yesterday, Comcast made its $65 billion all-cash offer for key Twenty-First Century Fox assets official. The offer sets up a bidding war with Disney, which had already struck a cash and stock deal with Fox. My guess is that Comcast is going to end up prevailing and the bidding will actually be less heated than many expect. There are many dimensions to this drama, but here are 5 quick reactions I have.
Tomorrow is the 8th annual VideoNuze Online Video Advertising Summit in NYC. So if you've been on the fence about whether to attend, this is your last chance!
The Video Ad Summit program includes over 40 speakers from Bloomberg Media, Bonnier, Dentsu Aegis, Disney ABC Digital, Ellation, ESPN, Essence, FOX, Group Nine Media, Havas, Hulu, IAB, Initiative, Meredith, Microsoft, NBCUniversal, Newsy, Pluto TV, Publicis, Roku, Vevo and many others to network with and learn from.
Our keynote guest is CBS’s EVP, Digital Sales and Sales Strategy David Lawenda, who will be interviewed by Mike Shields, Advertising Editor at Business Insider on how CBS is creating new brand value and revenue streams through its numerous digital initiatives.
Reminder that as a bonus, all paid registrants are included in the drawing to win a 55-inch 4K Roku TV.
Many thanks to our 11 sponsors, including Premier partners Extreme Reach and Verizon Digital Media Services; Headline partners 4C, AppNexus, Beachfront Media, Operative and Taboola; and Branding partners Brightcove, Cedato, Gamut Media and Roku.
Join us by registering now!