CW: What is your definition of television?
EB: Television is produced content that is owned by the media company and monetized by advertising. Video is shorter in format and may be user-generated, but is also ad-supported. In contrast, a film, a movie, or a series can be accessed on the same devices as TV and video, but these are monetized by subscription. Finally, cinema is viewed in a dedicated venue and monetized by admission fees. It boils down to monetization models, which is why some of these definitions may converge in the near future.
CW: Where is ad tech headed?
EB: Migration to programmatic will continue. Today, marketers are embracing the basic benefits of efficiency and scale for basic media channels like online display, video. They do this through DSPs and programmatic direct deals. Moving forward, brands will continue to adopt programmatic and will progress to more optimized one-to-one approaches. We are definitely headed toward programmatically traded media in other channels like TV, print, outdoor, etc.
CW:If you were at a television network, would you start the sales shift to programmatic? If so, how could you maintain the CPMs?
EB: I would certainly start the sales shift. There are many excellent reasons to shift to programmatic, but the most immediate would be to [help] figure out the space, possibly even to contribute to shaping it while it is still malleable.
Any television network that ventures into programmatic for the first time a year or two from now will be riding the coattails of their competitors. The CPMs will do exactly what they did in online display when that business became programmatic: they will dip a little short-term, then they will recover.
Of course, every programmatic platform supports floors, and floors can be used to prop up pricing, but I don't think CPMs are the issue. If CPMs drop a bit while volumes climb, net revenue won't be impacted. Programmatic is sure to bring a whole set of new advertisers to TV, while it brings engaging TV ads to 1:1 advertising. I think everybody wins from that.
CW: Give me some predictions for how the media landscape will look five years from now.
EB: In the next five years, we will continue to see a shift in ad tech as it relates to marketing technology. Companies are expanding their capabilities to become integrated marketing platforms. Enterprise software companies like Oracle, SAP and IBM are increasingly becoming involved with helping CMOs in a way similar to that of ad tech agencies. Oracle’s acquisition of Datalogix back in January is proof positive of this trend toward all-encompassing marketing solutions.
Similarly, ad tech solutions platforms like ours are strengthening our marketing arm on both sides of the equation. While we partner with many advertising
and media agencies, we also work directly with brand marketing leadership, serving them as a programmatic marketing platform.