• Vevo’s New FAST Channels on Roku Highlight Diverse CTV Viewing Behaviors

    Vevo has launched 11 free ad-supported TV (“FAST”) channels within The Roku Channel. FAST channels are free 24/7 programmed linear experiences that can be tuned into by viewers on-demand. Vevo’s new FAST channels are another reminder that CTV viewers have a diverse range of behaviors; sometimes accessing a single “unit” of programming on-demand (e.g. a movie, a TV episode, a music video, etc.) or binge-watching multiple units, or watching on-demand a curated set of programming from a linear TV or FAST channel, or even accessing a scheduled, linear TV experience (most notably sports).

    I’ve often thought of FAST channels as analogous to playlists in the audio world and the new Vevo channels feel like they fit that mode. The new channels include  Vevo Pop, Vevo R&B, Vevo Hip Hop, Vevo Reggaeton & Trap, Vevo Country, Vevo Latino, Vevo ‘70s, Vevo ‘80s, Vevo ‘90s, Vevo 2K, and Vevo Holiday, which will be accessible through New Year’s Eve. I sampled a few of the channels and as expected they all played their particular genre seamlessly.

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  • Inside the Stream Podcast: IMDb TV Has Ad Problems But It Will Succeed Anyway

    Welcome to this week’s edition of Inside the Stream, the podcast where nScreenMedia’s Chief Analyst Colin Dixon and I take listeners inside the world of streaming video.

    IMDb TV, Amazon’s free ad-supported streaming TV service has issues with how the advertising experience is implemented. There is a lot of ad repetition and randomness of ad insertion. This creates a jarring experience for users, and is somewhat incongruous because a show on IMDb TV like “Mad Men” has built in ad breaks from its original broadcast that aren’t being used.

    Colin and I discuss why these issues exist, and further, why they’re not uncommon among other FAST services. Some of the issues are quite thorny and don’t lend themselves to quick resolution. Still, we’re both optimistic long term that they will be resolved, and we’re also optimistic about IMDb TV’s likelihood of success. Its ownership by Amazon means eventually there will be strong targeting and lower funnel, actionable ads (Colin actually saw one like this for a hair dryer).

    A programming note - join us on Zoom for a live version of Inside the Stream on Dec. 15th at 2:30pm ET / 11:30 am PT. We’ll be discussing the top stories of 2021 and doing live audience Q&A. It’s free - join us!

    Listen to the podcast (29 minutes, 44 seconds)

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  • Save the Dates for Connected TV Advertising PREVIEW: 2022 (virtual event) on January 26th and 27th

    Please save the dates for VideoNuze’s inaugural Connected TV Advertising PREVIEW: 2022 (virtual event) on the afternoons of January 26th and 27th.

    Connected TV advertising is white hot. eMarketer recently raised its forecast for 2021 to $14.5 billion in the U.S. alone, up 60% from last year. And it is projecting CTV ad spending to double, to $29.5 billion by 2024. Other forecasters are even more optimistic about CTV’s future. CTV and streaming are the top priorities for every media and technology company today.

    Core to everyone’s optimism is CTV’s ability to bring together the best of TV advertising (sight, sound and motion) with the best of digital advertising (targeting, optimization, attribution), making it an unprecedented medium for marketers to achieve their diverse goals. In particular, CTV’s digital attributes will allow CTV to evolve to more of a lower funnel / full funnel medium, unlocking ad spending from performance-oriented marketers seeking specific outcomes.

    To help set the stage for the opportunities ahead and the challenges that remain, I’m pleased to present VideoNuze’s inaugural Connected TV Advertising PREVIEW: 2022 (virtual event) on January 26th and 27th. PREVIEW: 2022 will be the first event of its kind in the industry - 100% focused on senior industry executives sharing their key CTV priorities for the coming year. These are the executives and companies who are driving and shaping the industry today, through their strategic plans, investment decisions and innovation priorities (typical VideoNuze events feature 30-40 executive speakers).

    As always, the program will be highly curated, with a mix of one-on-one interviews, panel discussions, research presentations and case studies, providing an immersive learning experience for attendees. PREVIEW: 2022’s virtual format means attendees can view any/all of the sessions from the convenience and comfort of their offices or homes without concern for Covid, Omicron or any other variant that may arise. PREVIEW: 2022 is the fourth virtual event VideoNuze has hosted since the beginning of Covid (following 12+ years of hosting in-person events) and the feedback has been uniformly positive. For anyone with a stake in CTV advertising’s future, PREVIEW: 2022 will be a must-attend event.

    The CTV Advertising PREVIEW: 2022 web site, including registration, will be activated shortly and I’ll share many more details in the coming weeks, including the first group of sponsors.

    Looking further ahead into the new year, in June, 2022 VideoNuze will once again present our flagship Connected TV Advertising Summit (session videos from the 2021 edition are here and here), and in November 2022, the second version of the Connected TV Brand Suitability Summit (session videos from the 2021 edition are here).

    I’m really excited about what’s shaping up to be a busy year for VideoNuze of industry education, thought-leadership and networking about CTV advertising - its enormous potential and key challenges still to be surmounted.

    If you’re interested in learning about sponsorship or speaking opportunities please contact me.

  • Here's Why Not Too Long From Now, Streaming Media Players Will be Free for Certain Consumers

    All of the Cyber Monday and Black Friday deals flying around are reinforcing an idea I’ve been thinking about for much of 2021: not too long from now, some streaming media players/devices will be offered for free to certain consumers under specific circumstances.

    There are three fundamental reasons why this is likely to happen 1) The gross profit margins on these players is negligible if not non-existent, 2) The gross margin on advertising revenue for player providers is significant, and likely to strengthen even further, and 3) the entire streaming player / streaming services industry is in a massive land grab that isn’t close to being over.

    Following is how I look at the three reasons, and what comes next:

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