Advertisers aren't all that upset with Dish Network, the maker of a more efficient system to skip commercials called AutoHop.
While TV networks are legally trying to get Dish to back off from AutoHop, the networks’ advertising clients are still doing addressable advertising trials with the satellite programming company.
So Dish executives would seem to be telling advertisers: "If consumers really, really want a particular TV commercial, they can get it -- but it better be good. Not only that, but if your TV commercial sucks or isn't targeted to the right viewer, you'll lose out big time. Your consumers will just AutoHop it -- or worse.
To marketers, in other words: “Work harder. (And we might be here to help.)”
The initial reaction to AutoHop from media agency Starcom MediaVest Group Exchange was angry enough for Starcom to consider curtailing its future advertising activity with Dish.
Now, it seems that for all the headlines Dish made with AutoHop, there’s actually a mixed picture concerning marketers and their media agencies. A new addressable technology test was announced Wednesday by Dish and media agency Group M, on behalf of its marketing clients.
Many executives would tell you these are two separate things, that addressable advertising could cure commercial avoidance of all types by targeting commercials to those consumers who want them. But Dish would tell you it’s also right to give consumers better ways to time-shift without seeing commercials.
All this is not necessarily the end of the story. The legal issues the major networks have with Dish won't go away soon, because the networks believe AutoHop violates program carriage deals.
One interesting ongoing wrinkle could come in future addressable efforts, where TV networks would need to make inventory available.
Back in the late ‘90s, there was strong reaction to initial time-shifting DVR machines and technology. Yet today, TiVo, for example, is doing business with major TV advertisers -- mostly as a TV research company.
What do we end up with here -- strange bedfellows or just evolving TV business relations?