thePlatform has announced a larger multi-year relationship with existing customer BT under which its mpx system will provide video publishing for BT TV. Going forward, BT TV will be hosted at thePlatform's European data center. To date, BT has been using mpx to manage its IP-based TV service, which has over 1 million subscribers in the UK.
Amazon will acquire Twitch, the live-streaming video game platform, for $970 million. Until very recently Google was heavily rumored to be acquiring Twitch. Twitch is Amazon's 2nd-biggest acquisition ever, after its $1.2 billion purchase of Zappos in 2009. Twitch enables users to live-stream and record themselves playing video games, which tens of millions of monthly visitors watch.
Twitch is Amazon's biggest investment in online video to date and follows other video initiatives including Prime Instant Videos, an escalating slate of original programs, numerous high-profile licensing deals (including for various HBO programs and for the PBS drama "Downton Abbey") as well as the recent launch of the Fire TV connected TV device.
Discussion about programmatic buying is plentiful these days, with many calling it "the hottest sector of advertising right now." As brands and agencies continue testing programmatic options across different types of media, questions - and many opinions - remain about how digital and TV can play together in the programmatic space.
The reality is that both digital and TV could stand to take some cues from one another to improve efficiencies. It's critical to take a realistic perspective on how these media could best converge, easing the buying and selling processes and advancing the entire ad industry. Adopting such an approach will help marketers execute and measure cross-platform campaigns that, as Unilever's CMO Keith Weed remarked at Cannes, will allow them to "lead with brands and not channels."
How can TV buying and planning enhance digital, and vice versa?
Innovid has released results of a study that concludes placing video ads with relevant video content helps to boost ad engagement. Innovid analyzed 3 campaigns using its iRoll format with the Innovid Atom Verification solution. Innovid measured number of ad impressions, verified video content categories and engagement rates.
Specifically, the study compared a campaign's engagement rate for ads served with relevant video vs. the engagement rate for overall impressions. Engagement rates were 1.9x and 1.4x higher respectively, for 2 of the campaigns, travel and auto, when the ad vertical aligned with the content category. However for the 3rd campaign (for pharma) it was 2.3x higher than overall when running against sports video specifically.