In the blur of the recent NABShow, I missed that Comcast Technology Solutions introduced Linear Rights Metadata Management (“LRM”), which ensures that the appropriate linear video is distributed through both existing pay-TV operators and new OTT distributors.
Steve Lacoff, VP of Product Management at CTS, who oversaw the development of LRM, briefed me on why it’s important, particularly in the context of proliferating subscription options and mobile/connected TV consumption.
Topics: Comcast Technology Solutions
I’m pleased to present the 368th edition of the VideoNuze podcast with my weekly partner Colin Dixon of nScreenMedia.
Colin and I were both at the NABShow in Las Vegas earlier this week and on this week’s podcast we share some of our observations. Colin sees the industry moving from blocking and tackling to a focus on making digital business models work and he provides a number of examples.
I observed a similar theme, especially in recent research data that I highlight which shows the new normal of video consumption. I also share points from a keynote interview I did at NAB with Jim Lanzone, Chief Digital Officer of CBS, in which Jim explained how the company has transitioned from its broadcast roots to being a digital media powerhouse with its All Access and CBSN services leading the way.
Listen in to learn more!
Click here to listen to the podcast (23 minutes, 34 seconds)
Beachfront Media has launched a “two-way transparency suite” of tools and analytics for programmatic mobile video advertising. The suite provides enhanced brand safety for both video content publishers and advertisers.
Frank Sinton, Beachfront’s founder and CEO told me that typically there isn’t much transparency for publishers to understand which advertisers are buying video on their sites and apps programmatically. Beachfront will now give its 300+ publisher partners the ability to write business rules around which advertisers are allowed to access inventory down to which actual ads are run, in real time.
Topics: Beachfront Media
iSpot.tv has introduced a new analytics solution that allows advertisers to measure in real time the effectiveness of their ads across metrics including web site visits, registrations and purchases. The solution is the latest in an ongoing series of technology initiatives bringing enhanced attribution, targeting and ROI potential to traditional TV ads.
iSpot.tv’s CEO Sean Muller told me in a briefing that the conversion analytics solution directly addresses TV advertisers’ pain point of not being able to accurately or quickly measure and attribute how TV ads translate into specific actions. The challenge has been exacerbated by consumers’ shift to on-demand viewing across devices on services that are sometimes ad-free as well.
Video personalization engine IRIS.TV has helped The Hollywood Reporter- Billboard Media Group more than double its video views from 80 million in October ’16 to 210 million in February ’17. Most of the viewership is on owned and operated properties. In a briefing, John Amato, President, Entertainment Group and Michael Palmer, GM, Video, told me that the key has been using IRIS.TV’s technology to drive longer session lengths with viewers watching two to four videos instead of just one.
Online video platform Brightcove has announced Brightcove Live, a live streaming solution that includes server-side ad insertion, cloud DVR, content encryption, on-the-fly clipping and VOD asset creation. Brightcove Live can be deployed as a standalone service and also as part of Brightcove’s broader Video Cloud platform, which means it taps into all of Video Cloud’s technology tools and partnerships.
Verizon Digital Media Services (VDMS) has unveiled Verizon Media Xperience Studio, a new content intelligence system which allows content providers to further automate online video workflows and gain greater insights into the performance and profitability of individual video assets.
In a briefing, VDMS’s CMO Mary Kay Evans and product director Jason Friedlander explained that while analytics have always been a part of the VDMS offering, Xperience Studio is the first initiative that spans all aspects of its product suite, allowing much greater insights than ever before.
Topics: Verizon Digital Media Services
TV data company Alphonso has debuted Alphonso Insights, which provides advertisers and agencies with real-time analysis of TV ads along with closed loop attribution. The benefit for buyers is to better understand the performance of their ads and how well they stand up to those of competitors. Over 2,500 end users from 200 different advertisers and agencies have been using Alphonso Insights during its beta period.
I’m pleased to present the 364th edition of the VideoNuze podcast with my weekly partner Colin Dixon of nScreenMedia.
First, Colin and I are proud to announce our very first podcast sponsor, Akamai Technologies, which will show its Media Acceleration capabilities and range of cloud-based solutions at the NABShow in Las Vegas, in booth SL3324. Click here to schedule a meeting.
Colin was in London for the TV Connect show earlier this week and on today’s podcast, he shares his 3 top takeaways. Meanwhile earlier this week I was in NYC for the Advanced Advertising conference and I then share my 3 top takeaways.
As you’ll hear, data was on both of our lists. Interestingly though, our conversation reveals a very different approach to how users’ data is being treated. Colin elaborates on the General Data Protection Regulation (“GDPR”), which will enforce minimum collection standards on Internet companies in Europe, whereas just this week, the U.S. House voted to repeal the broadband privacy rules.
Listen in to learn more!
Click here to listen to the podcast (24 minutes, 3 seconds)
Online video, music and sports experiences are poised to become even richer and more personalized as metadata provider Gracenote announced today a suite of new data products for each market. The data are meant to support entertainment providers’ and device makers’ voice and text search, user experiences and personalized recommendations.
VidMob, whose platform provides clients access to thousands of video post-production professionals, is expanding its scope, announcing this morning that it is launching a self-service ad platform for Snapchat. This means that small-to-medium sized businesses will be able to buy, create and manage video ad campaigns through one interface. To date only larger brands and agencies have been able to buy Snap Ads.
Synacor is a company that has flown a bit below the radar, but is playing a pivotal, behind-the-scenes role in enabling TV Everywhere and single sign-on across multiple devices, including Apple TV. Synacor’s CEO Himesh Bhise caught me up on the company’s activities and his thoughts on where the TV industry is heading. Following is an edited transcript.
Extreme Reach has released a new e-Book, “Video Ad Streaming: A Simple Change that Will Set a New Industry Standard,” highlighting the inefficiencies of current cross-screen video ad fulfillment and urging a modern approach with ad creative centrally managed and accessible.
The e-Book identifies the core problem of siloed TV and video workflows, which result in TV ads that are widely used online to be duplicated and re-formatted repeatedly. All of this causes major delays in getting the right ad to the right place at the right time.
Topics: Extreme Reach
Brightcove has published a manifesto highlighting ad-supported online video’s challenging economics and proposing improved viewing experiences, ad optimization and reduced operational complexity as critical solutions. While observing that online video usage has clearly “crossed the chasm” to become a mainstream experience, the manifesto notes that “the extreme concentration of ad dollars among a few mega companies” (citing Morgan Stanley research that 85% of incremental spending goes to Google and Facebook) will ultimately mean fewer content options.
As web browsers move rapidly to sunset their support for Flash, companies that rely on Flash for video playback are being forced to make changes. Apple has led the charge in driving the need for this change by disabling Flash by default in Safari 10, and Chrome, Firefox, and Microsoft’s Edge are quickly following suit. Some media companies migrated to HTML5 video players in early 2016 in anticipation of these industry-wide changes, but others have remained in a ‘wait-and-see’ mode to see if Flash really is going away.
Companies that haven’t moved to an HTML5 video player are now stuck between a rock and a hard-place. For them, its either risk the impact of Flash being disabled and react as needed, or remove this risk at the expense of making this migration an immediate priority. The reticence of those that remain reliant on Flash has to do with not being able to properly evaluate the risk and effort involved.
Comcast Technology Solutions, a division of Comcast Cable which was formed last Fall, has announced an expansion of its the Video Platform solution to support multiple monetization models as well as complete video processing, management, multi-CDN distribution and playout. In addition, the Video Platform includes out-of-the-box templates for front-end user experience with partners Accedo and You.i TV, which can be fully customized.
The Video Platform builds on capabilities of thePlatform, which Comcast acquired back in 2006, along with multiple other technologies now under the Comcast Technology Solutions roof.
Topics: Comcast Technology Solutions
Aiming for simplicity, popular online video platform provider JW Player has introduced JW Live, a cloud-based, live streaming service for content providers. JW Live is meant to be an out of the box service that is integrated with the JW player and platform, enabling content providers to easily power up live streams for their audiences.
JW Live is the latest effort to popularize live streaming, a category receiving a lot of attention these days, primarily because Facebook is aggressively pursuing it with Facebook Live. JW Live is another example of how technology providers are positioning themselves to assist content providers in powering their own businesses, as opposed to becoming solely reliant on platforms like Facebook, YouTube, Snapchat and others which offer large audiences, but risk undermining control over revenue generation and loyalty.
Topics: JW Player
In the media business, content is king, so content traditionally (and understandably) takes priority over user experience. But priorities are shifting as streaming evolves into a more complex, competitive space where differentiated products can make a big difference to the bottom line.
To truly personalize discovery, Comcast is investing heavily in improving how its customers search and browse content. And by valuing its personalization tech at $1 billion a year, Netflix firmly established that a truly personalized entertainment platform presents large opportunities for companies trying to hit the moving target of user expectations.
The video industry could be about to get a whole lot smarter, as IBM announced it will marry its Watson cognitive computing capabilities to its cloud video technology. IBM has been heavily promoting Watson as a way for diverse industries to exploit highly unstructured data to better understand and run their businesses (if you missed the recent “60 Minutes” on how Watson is helping researchers treat cancer, I highly recommend).
With online video increasingly becoming about long-form programming, viewers expect a flawless experience comparable to TV. But one of the complicating factors is that many content providers use application programming interfaces (APIs) from third-party vendors to enable multiple aspects of their experience whether online, mobile web or via apps. These could include APIs for analytics, ad serving, content management, video management, storage, CDN, etc.
While APIs enrich and enable the experience, when they fail or suffer degraded performance, the viewer is impacted and the content provider’s brand and business model suffer. Failures or reduced performance can happen for all kinds of reasons: new releases, insufficient testing, custom implementations, under capacity during peak load times, etc. Worse, given their lean staffs, content providers often don’t even know about failures, until viewers have surfaced them (many of us have no doubt been in this role, for example, tweeting about real-time problems).
Topics: Wicket Labs