Dailymotion Seeks To Diversify Video Demand After LiveRail Shutters

MobilizingVivendi-owned Dailymotion is expanding its network of video demand sources and its programmatic presence in New York, despite reports of restructures and the closing of the French video platform’s Palo Alto, Calif., office.

Dailymotion is partnering with the mobile DSP StrikeAd, owned by recently acquired Sizmek, to serve more rich media units and enable geo-based targeting across mobile web and apps.

While Dailymotion already has deals with other mobile DSPs like Adelphic in place for factors like frequency capping, Sizmek was stronger at creative, said Bishoi Bastha, director of global programmatic for Dailymotion, who is relocating from the Palo Alto office to New York this week.

Despite Dailymotion’s efforts to ramp up on programmatic, it faces competitive pressures from large video platforms like YouTube, Hulu and Facebook.

Dailymotion hopes to differentiate through its proprietary video player, which lets it serve so-called “customized” ad formats like 360 video while adding transparency for buyers as to where their ad actually played.

It also hopes to cut down on the number of layers between demand partners and end SSPs by forging its own connections through the Dailymotion Exchange (DMX), the private exchange it built using Facebook’s now-defunct LiveRail. 

That shuttering, however, introduced some expected setbacks.

“I don’t want to say we anticipated at the time that this would happen, but we went straight to DSPs and built strong relationships with buyers when we launched DMX where we could really control what we were selling,” said Bastha. “With LiveRail dropping [service] we do have to change a lot of things.”

With LiveRail’s demise, Dailymotion is eyeing other SSPs for its private exchange including Comcast’s StickyAds, AppNexus and SpotX.

There are two areas of focus for Dailymotion: The first is mobile video, as evidenced by the Sizmek deal and the video platform’s push to support more vertical pre-roll and 360-degree video ads on mobile.

The second is over-the-top (OTT) TV, where buyer demand has increased.

But lack of comprehensive audience measurement makes it hard for programmatic OTT buying to scale. Today, there’s no way to figure out if targeting was accurate, Bastha claims.

“If you want to grow this business, you need comScore and Nielsen to validate it, and when you have acquisitions like Comcast with StickyAds and Verizon and AOL, I’m not sure you’ll have access to that data directly,” he added. “There are a lot of areas you’ll have to circumvent with your own player and data.”

Dailymotion has a programmatic team of 20 between New York and Paris, and expects to double its team focused specifically on ad products and partnerships to 40.

Total monthly uniques on Dailymotion’s ad-supported sites reached 2.5 million video viewers this June; that’s down substantially from the 10 million monthly uniques recorded a year ago, according to comScore. Those figures do not count mobile video viewers, however, which likely contributed to the stark drop.

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