Online Advertising Start Making Sense: What Lies Ahead

I should have known when I saw the annual resurrection of that puzzling Julia Roberts commercial for Lancomethat it’s just about that special time of the year when experts, pundits and worse begin predicting what will happen next year.

The first The Year Ahead sighting for me came from The Guardian. Andreas Schroeter, the founder and COO of Wywy, a really fascinating and workable automated content recognition technology that lets advertisers simultaneously hook on-screen advertisers with second-screen viewers, offered up three of his predictions for 2015, and since the early bird gets the word, well, let’s talk.

First of all, he is not predicting anything that hasn’t already happened. Prognosticators never do. As far as I know, no one predicted phablets or the iPad and not Vine nor Snapchat, or that Amazon would pay almost $1 billion for Twitch, a site for people to watch other people play games.

Instead Schroeter says “linear TV ad planning” while not dead, is probably dying. As more people watch online via connected TVs, more info will be available to advertisers and more programmatic buying tools will become necessary, a prediction TubeMogul helped make true just a few days ago joining Clypd and AudienceXpress that already jumped in the pool.

And maybe, just maybe, because Wywy is in the second-screeen integration business, he predicts the “new found flexibility” will increasingly move viewers away from the old TV schedule to their own on-demand inclinations.

“To help boost viewing figures, TV show ‘tasters’ will be increasingly uploaded on to channels such as YouTube by production companies, reducing time constraints even further and enabling consumers to choose when they watch,” he writes, which again was manifest in the recent Star Wars VII sequel video clip that went viral in about three seconds, give or take.  

That’s good news for Wywy: “Almost half of all viewers now use a second screen while watching TV; this multitasking is expected to increase in 2015. This will require advertisers to adapt in order to recapture the distracted second-screeners.”

He’s probably right.

And third, Schroeter opines, measurement of all these screens and devices will begin to make sense to advertisers and publishers and we’ll have a brand new, logical world, which he notes is already a work in progress with Nielsen OCR, comScore VCE and Active GRP, among others.

Back to the second-screen business at hand, he concludes, “as more TV viewers visit brand Web sites on second screens within minutes of a TV ad airing, online metrics — such as visits, clickthroughs and conversions — will begin to merge with television metrics to form a truly integrated campaign that can be measured holistically.”

And so, that’s 2015.  

What I find striking about this is not that Schroeter sees the future reflected in two or more devices at the same time but that as I read the piece, I thought, “Well, of course,” and when I read it again I realized just how different that media world will be, but also how likely it all is to happen more or less as he’s plotted it out.

Certainly a zillion other things will confuse this. Something might happen on Tuesday that will change everything. But also, this first prediction for 2015 seems to be not-shocking-at-all, which for a new business, is probably a good thing. If it’s true.
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