Home CTV Roundup TV Programmers And Advertisers Are Inching Closer To Their Competitors

TV Programmers And Advertisers Are Inching Closer To Their Competitors

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Welcome to this week’s dispatch from connected TV land, where we’ll dissect why publishers and brands are paying extra careful attention to what their adversaries are up to.

Broadcasters and streamers compete for each other’s viewers and subscribers. At the same time, advertisers need to know how their ads are performing on rival platforms.

Advertisers also want ways to win customers from rival brands. Conquest advertising is the backbone of online advertising (think Google and Amazon), and now the strategy is making its way into TV advertising, too.

Clean rooms are one way to share information needed for both cross-platform measurement and conquest campaigns on CTV. (Check out last week’s look into the next growth phase of clean rooms.)

But another opportunity to get data about competitors comes with programmatic integrations. Let’s dive in.

The programmatic picture

Just last week, Roku plugged into Comcast-owned FreeWheel’s TV ad tech, so advertisers can plan Roku campaigns based on other streamers’ available inventory.

Programmers had to deal with Roku and other distributors separately to get a sense of impression delivery across their portfolios, which is a very manual process. And when advertisers can’t tell where they’ve over- or underdelivered, a whole lot of ad repetition happens, which denigrates the user experience and drives down return on ad spend and yield.

Roku doesn’t get ad inventory information directly from competing distributors because, duh, it’s the competition. But the FreeWheel SSP plugs into many broadcast networks and streaming channels, so it has a fuller view of programmer supply. Rather than Roku advertisers wrangling campaign reports from many networks to see how campaigns fared after they ran, Roku advertisers might plan more effectively up front with FreeWheel data.

But what I’m wondering is: Can programmatic integrations provide the much-desired interoperability that clean rooms cannot?

Many broadcast and streaming companies (Roku included) have clean rooms but still don’t have insight into other walled gardens. So advertisers themselves must plug each of their media channels for info and hope to create some patchwork overlap.


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Going head-to-head

From a targeting perspective, a programmatic integration can also help advertisers obtain useful information for conquest campaigns without going to competitor brands.

FreeWheel’s media solutions division, now grouped under the rebranded AudienceXpress, recently upgraded its targeting segments to include competing brands’ customers. A shoe brand can now plan Comcast campaigns on the same networks or dayparts as a rival shoe brand, for example.

And FreeWheel isn’t the only CTV ad tech company going for conquest campaigns. Affinity Solutions, a measurement company that connects TV ads to purchase data, launched a campaign planning platform for this year’s upfront season that links ad exposures to sales by competing brands.

TV advertisers increasingly tell me that poaching their rivals’ customers is a more important part of media plans. DiGiorno, for one, is running campaigns on competitors’ turf, including tentpole events on TV, while Hyundai considers conquest advertising to be one of its highest performing marketing strategies.

The biggest online ad sellers – Google, Meta and Amazon – aren’t just data-driven. They are powered and differentiated by how effectively they get brands to bid for each other’s customers and defend their own names and keywords.

Now that the TV industry has savvied up to data onboarding and viewer-level targeting to entice ad budgets, the next step is conquest advertising.

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