Dish runs a scaled addressable advertising business. But its process to decide whether to run a linear or addressable ad was highly manual.
Staff used spreadsheets and spent two to three weeks just to schedule a single week of advertising. And managing yield – like figuring out whether an addressable or demo-based linear ad should run in a given spot – was imprecise.
Since mid-May, Dish has piloted a product from Comcast’s FreeWheel designed to automate elements of that scheduling process. Both companies see it as a prelude to further automation and sophisticated yield management in TV advertising.
“We ingest all their data and make a recommendation on whether a spot would be best served by being an addressable ad or a demo-based linear ad,” said Geoff Wolinetz, head of revenue at FreeWheel.
FreeWheel looks at data including inventory availability, viewership forecasts and sales order to automate scheduling suggestions.
A given spot may not be eligible for an addressable ad, for example, because it doesn’t have the right audience. In other cases, the system might predict an addressable ad can bring in more money.
FreeWheel’s pilot inventory allocation product also looks at price to decide whether to run an addressable ad or linear, demo-based ads. If the campaign was sold on an impression basis, it will look at CPMs. If the campaign was sold on a unit basis, it will look at factors like number of units or total spend.
Dish improved yield, which increased revenue, though the companies declined to share specifics.
FreeWheel’s workflow enhancement tool also reduces schedule making from two- to three-weeks to two- to three-days.
And Dish can ensure its inventory is in its optimal place to drive performance for clients. That means placements that can meet rating and impression goals as well as control reach and frequency, said Kevin Arrix, senior vice president of Dish Media Sales.
This article has been updated to clarify how the inventory allocation tool optimizes.