OTT is the Next Step in the Digital Revolution for Media Buyers

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OTT is increasingly being tested by advertisers as more inventory becomes available, says Nicole Whitesel, SVP of Enterprise Strategy at Publicis Media. “In the past, OTT was seen as a nascent channel with limited reach,” said Whitesel. “I think now you’re seeing a lot more inventory there available to them to buy. I think their willingness to test things where they’re unsure of outcomes has been increased more than ever before.”

Nicole Whitesel, SVP of Enterprise Strategy at Publicis Media recently discussed the increased experimentation with OTT by agencies and their clients in an interview with BeetTV:

OTT is the Next Step in the Digital Revolution for Ad Buyers

One of the things we’re seeing is clients appetites being larger than ever before to explore. In the past, OTT was seen as a nascent channel with limited reach. I think now you’re seeing a lot more inventory there available to them to buy. I think their willingness to test things where they’re unsure of outcomes has been increased more than ever before.

We’re really talking about kind of the next step, the digital revolution maybe seven years ago and people were early movers in that space and they had an advantage.

We’re thinking about the space in a similar way. There’s an opportunity to get in early and test things, build operational muscle between teams that maybe haven’t worked together as closely before. We really see that as an opportunity this year to do a lot of that work.

Agency Teams Working Together to Buy OTT Inventory

You have teams where historically broadcast teams and national teams have bought broadcast. Then you have teams that are more precision or audience driven that buy programmatic. You’re seeing a lot of work between those teams now to think about the way we’re buying connected TV, inventory if you will, or OTT.

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You have a broadcast team that might be negotiating as part of an upfront and then you have an activation team who’s actually activating within a quarter against a specific audience, buying that inventory in-quarter.

Those are teams that historically don’t work as closely together on an ongoing basis outside of upfront. We’re seeing that that’s an opportunity to bring those teams closer together and working more closely with clients who learn these new channels and understand that. That goes as well to analytics and measurement. How are we measuring them? What’s the contribution when compared to historically traditional channels like linear TV?

Opportunity for Direct to Consumer Companies

I think there’s an opportunity for direct to consumer companies (DTC) to enter the space through these new channels that didn’t exist before from a linear broadcast perspective. A lot of inventory was sold in the upfront and there was limited inventory available on an ongoing basis. That’s changing with these new channels in inventory that’s available through connected TV or FEP inventory.

They have an opportunity to buy that in a way that benefits their business model and works with the way that their business has set up to run with retail quarters, seasonality, the things that make sense for them. They don’t have to make a commitment a year in advance. They can do it when it makes sense for their business.

Getting Smarter With Broadcast Partners

I think there’s an opportunity for us to get smarter about the way we partner with our broadcast partners. Historically we’ve gone in and we say we want this CPM and this flexibility and this is the programming or dayparts we want to buy.

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I think there’s an opportunity for us to say, hey, we want to buy this from an upfront perspective, but here’s all the other inventory that you manage that we also want to think about buying. We can collectively leverage dollars and get things that are valuable for our brands and our clients that allows them the flexibility to test these new channels.

TV Attribution – A Big Next Step for Ad Buyers

I think TV attribution is one of the big next steps for our industry. Being able to understand a contribution of a specific channel and its cost and associated with an outcome the brand’s care about is I think the next big opportunity for us. Then we’ll understand investment in media mix across those different video channels.

OTT is the Next Step in the Digital Revolution for Ad Buyers



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