Programmatic Helping Advertisers To Create, Buy Longer, Interactive TV Ad Segments

Centro’s ad platform, Basis, recently became certified on Hulu’s private marketplace, which means the company’s customers have the ability to gain cross-channel video advertising capabilities through programmatic ad buys that reach 72 million viewers watching on connected TVs and other devices.

Basis consolidates digital operations across programmatic, direct, search, and social campaigns, making access to Hulu’s PMP complements the connected TV advertising features and allows advertisers to automate upfront Hulu deals and direct ad buys on every major OTT and digital video platform.

Media buys on Hulu’s PMP allow Centro users to activate campaigns in real-time to reach millions of authenticated subscribers viewing premium content video-on-demand or live with brand safety.

Through a quality check, the ads deliver targeted messages to customers in ad units and leverage Hulu’s data-driven audience segments based on user demographics, interests, behaviors, location, and a variety of other factors.



Data & Programmatic Insider caught up with Centro’s CEO Shawn Riegsecker to talk about the benefits to advertisers and the future of connected TV. He said segments need to include one ad and need to run longer, rather than shorter as programming tries to stuff 10 or more ads in one segment break.

D&PI:  Why is this partnership important to advertisers?

Riegsecker:  We as an industry are moving in the wrong direction for television and targeting advertising. The lack of consumer attention and technology in traditional advertising has made us move from 60-second to 30-second -- and now some experiments with six-second -- ads.

It’s making it a worse experience for consumers, and it’s impossible for a brand to create a beautiful, emotional and impactful ad. The cost of traditional advertising, when including the waste, means I don’t have the money to run a longer 20-second or a 180-second spot.

With platforms like Hulu we can move the pendulum in the other direction. The ads can become more heartfelt and thought provoking.

D&PI:  Can you elaborate?

Riegsecker:  Rather than running a six-second ad, imagine running a three-minute segment. I think consumers will get back to enjoying the short break. It will become more of a story like a short film and bring a much higher return.

D&PI:  So you’re saying that one two-minute spot is better than four 30-second spots?

Riegsecker:   Absolutely. Brands are struggling to tell their story in shorter spots. I love to go onto YouTube and watch three-minute spots. In three minutes you can move someone to tears.

D&PI:  Does it interrupt their viewing experience with a two-minute spot?

Riegsecker:  Now all programs have two- or three-minute openings inside of the content. Rather than see six 30-minute spots you will see one longer spot. (As the industry moves toward addressability, being able to target a specific topic, it allows the advertiser to reach a specific person with a specific interest.)

This partnership opens new opportunities for the way we buy traditional media because of all the waste, generalized targeting, rather than one-to-one targeting. When I remove half of the audience waste into programmatic, I can afford to create a higher impact. 

D&PI:  In your opinion, what is the future of connected TV?

Riegsecker:  Consumers cutting the cord will only increase in the next few years and it will have a significant effect on traditional cable companies and traditional linear network TV providers. Secondly, for the first time, marketers can reach people with specific messages with a longer message.

This will help to improve interactivity. The commercials will become interactive. For example, I like the JCrew sweater I just saw, which means I can now stop and look around.

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