Fresh off the show floor at NAB Show in Las Vegas, I was struck by three very clear trends:
- Broadcasters are keen to understand what they need to do to adopt ATSC 3.0, the IP-based over-the-air (OTA) TV broadcast standard that combines broadcasting and broadband internet,
- Many are working to reorient workflows to support 'Advanced Advertising' and cross-screen measurement, and
- Cross-screen multi-touch attribution is now a 'must-have' for the sell-side to merchandise their unique value to buyers.
Meanwhile back in New York, the annual TV Upfronts and Digital Video Newfronts are in full swing. My only hope is that we're not going another year planning our Marketing efforts in separate linear vs. digital siloes.
Video is fundamentally different from all other digital advertising formats, and it must be planned, executed, and measured as such. What’s more, video has converged with OTT, VOD and essentially all programs accessible via Connected TV, which brings both opportunity and complexity. Finally - based on the availability of cross-screen audience and ratings data - video is on a collision course with linear broadcast, cable, and satellite TV, which has its own arcane processes, systems, and economics.
New research from video ad tech provider VideoAmp reveals that advertisers and agencies are bullish on planning and buying ads across linear TV, VOD and online video, but that challenges remain. Fully 85% of buyers believe that TV and online video ads are either somewhat or extremely complementary, something I’ve long-believed.
66% of buyers said they are already leveraging digital data in their linear TV buys, while 57% said that they are targeting TV viewers across digital screens and devices. Meanwhile 74% cited accuracy in planning and execution across TV and video as benefiting from holistic buying.
I’m pleased to present the 399th edition of the VideoNuze podcast with my weekly partner Colin Dixon of nScreenMedia.
This week we’re joined by Ross McCray, co-founder and CEO of VideoAmp, a leading video ad tech platform. VideoAmp positions itself as the “TV operating system for advertising,” working primarily with the buy side to unify linear TV and online video advertising.
Ross shares his thoughts on a range of key industry issues including how the TV networks are increasing their competitiveness relative to Google and Facebook, how friction in the buy side is being reduced as agencies revamp their organizational structures, the role of 6-second ads in driving new value, how data from tens of millions of TV viewers is now helping create targeted segments, big trends for 2018 and much more.
Listen in to learn more!
Click here to listen to the podcast (26 minutes, 50 seconds)
There’s plenty of M&A and financing activity in the video adtech space, with the latest news coming this morning with RhythmOne acquiring YuMe for $185 million. The deal had been rumored for a while and unites YuMe’s demand-side capabilities with RhythmOne’s supply-side and programmatic platform. YuMe was one of the earliest video adtech players to go public, back in 2013, but has had a bumpy ride as the industry rapidly evolved.
Content quality is widely viewed as one of the most important variables for driving performance in advertising. Many brands and agencies divide their efforts between premium media advertising and cost effective media advertising. Buying premium content and video is often utilized to build brand awareness and generate exposure, while cost effective media advertising focuses on conversion points and total reach. Bridging the two practices through software for value and decisioning gives advertisers unreached efficiencies. This will be extremely important as the move to cross screen advertising begins to scale.
But what is the formula for automating the process to determine what is to be considered premium content?
VideoAmp, a startup focused on optimizing cross-screen video ad campaigns, has raised a $15 million Series A round led by RTL Group, with participation from existing investors. The new funds will be used for product and business development. VideoAmp has raised $17.2 million to date. RTL is already active in the video space, having invested in both SpotX and clypd.
A video ad tech financing like this would have happened on a near-weekly basis just a few years ago, but with investor confusion about the space due to fragmentation (see the LumaScape), as well as uncertain market conditions, VideoAmp’s raise is quite unusual. Yesterday I spoke to VideoAmp’s CEO Ross McCray and its chief business officer, Jay Prasad, to learn more about company differentiators and how it succeeded with the financing.