The deal will integrate the cloud-based interactive tools that ActiveVideo sells to pay TV providers with BrightLine's TV advertising software as well as its relationships with advertisers and agencies.
ActiveVideo believes cloud-based services can avert many set-top box issues of incompatibility when it comes to interactive TV and advertising efforts. With cloud-based systems, the set-top device doesn't need to do the processing -- only the simple process of video decoding.
One of the venture's initial deals is with L’Oreal USA with an effort around OnBeauty -- a beauty app for women designed specifically for connected televisions.
Overall, expectations are high, as the companies believe they can reach virtually all U.S. set-top boxes with the venture -- some 300 million set-top boxes, about 2.5 units in each of the roughly 100 million U.S. pay TV homes. It also includes some 50 million other consumer electronic devices.
“The challenge has been how to achieve scale -- how a brand can get to, say, 20 million or 30 million boxes overnight,” says Murali Nemani, chief marketing officer of ActiveVideo.
Interactive TV campaigns have performed better than comparable online efforts, the companies say. “Our clients have been seeing fantastic results, higher than click rates on digital [interactive campaigns],” says Rob Aksman, founder and chief experience officer of BrightLine.
ActiveVideo’s Nemani says the return on investment for brands from interactive TV campaigns is three times better versus online -- with 20 times better response rates versus digital; and 14
times better in engagement time. BrightLine and ActiveVideo say the new interactive efforts can work on newer technology-based TV providers -- and more importantly, with older TV providers.
“This is a way of catching up,” says Aksman. “It’s creating a sense of urgency for the older guys; [this includes any] satellite, cable, telco [ TV companies]. That's why we were interested in ActiveVideo. It can substantially increase scale, faster than consumers having to buy these devices or operators having to roll them out.”
Using HTML-based systems, BrightLine interactive ad products can provide social media connections, real-time analytics, dynamic content and commerce. Through 10 years, BrightLine has done some 500 interactive advertising campaigns in over 90 million TV homes.
the U.S. and globally through pay-TV providers including Charter Communications, Liberty Global, Cablevision Systems, Time Warner Cable and Roku-enabled devices.