IMDb TV A Golden Goose For Amazon; Criteo Finds Google FLoC Lacks Scale

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When people think of Amazon video assets, it’s Amazon Prime, Twitch and Fire TV. But IMDb TV, formerly Freedive, has quietly become an important piece of Amazon’s video strategy, and may even be a golden goose of its own someday, VideoWeek reports. As a free, ad-supported content library, IMDb TV can grow CTV supply without signing new users in the hyper-competitive subscription streaming market (where Amazon’s champion is Prime). IMDb TV also connects directly to Amazon shopping, with purchase or ad-to-cart features through Fire TV sticks or Alexa-enabled devices, and with closed-loop sales attribution. That makes IMDb TV a natural extension for Amazon-based sellers, many of whom create product demos and other videos for their Amazon store pages but aren’t TV or CTV advertisers. Ecommerce media agencies are enthusiastic about IMDb TV for just that reason. They work with shopper marketers, not national brand marketers that buy TV ads. But extending product videos to an Amazon CTV app is within their wheelhouse. AdExchanger has more.

What’s In A Cohort? Seriously.

Criteo published the third post in a four-part series examining Google’s FLoC Original Trials. The consistent thread is that FLoC lacks the scale necessary to draw significant conclusions. Since there are relatively few publishers testing FLoC, a site like sees users from about 4,000 cohorts per week, while the median site only picks up two cohorts per week. FLoCs are also unintuitive, because they don’t target people; they target “a cluster of browsing activity,” in Google’s words. A cohort of “cooking enthusiasts” will include people who visited recipe and kitchen supply sites. But the overall browsing patterns of that group fluctuate week to week, because the tech is making random connections across thousands of users’ browsing histories. A Google academic paper showed how FLoC-based campaigns could achieve 95% of the performance advertising effectiveness of third-party cookies. And Criteo reproduced the methodology, which it could do because it works with Expedia as a site owner and many travel-booking marketers, so it could algorithmically track the similarity of users in a travel cohort. But the opacity and low volume of FLoC IDs on programmatic exchanges is a blocker to in-depth examination of Google’s claims.

CTV Goes Local

Hearst Television launched its CTV Audience Marketplace, giving buyers more precise targeting to reach demographics or ZIP codes. There has been a huge demand for targeting solutions among advertisers who are following the eyeballs migrating to streaming platforms, particularly during the pandemic. Hearst’s marketplace sits within its Anyscreen private marketplace platform, rolled out in 2018, which claims to target nearly 80% of US households. Days ago, Hearst TV rolled out a “Very Local” streaming channel in 26 markets. The new Audience Marketplace aggregates data and segments across its network of programmers. Related: AdExchanger’s The Big Story podcast covered the Shopify-Roku partnership announced this week, which was likewise framed as a way to onboard the local TV and SMB markets to CTV.

But Wait, There’s More!   

Umbrella Network acquired Lucidity for “tens of millions.” [CoinDesk]

Bounteous acquired Lister Digital. [release]

IRIS.TV taps SpringServe to enable contextual targeting for CTV. [release]

A new poll shows that voters are very concerned about the power of Big Tech companies. [WSJ]

IPG Mediabrands adds inclusion analytics data from Nielsen-owned Gracenote. [Ad Age]

Vevo launches an ad solution to reach Hispanic audiences in CTV. [Campaign]

You’re Hired

Tmwi hires Steve Hadfield as managing director. [Martech Series]

WorkReduce names new executive appointments. [MediaPost]

Connatix named Mel Bessaha SVP, Demand. [release]

Don Moore hired as CEO, US of Hybrid Theory. [MediaPost]

Ayo Davis tapped as president of Disney Branded Television. [THR]

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