The Upfronts are upon us! The annual advertising ritual of buying and selling national ad time for the October-September broadcast year is taking a cue from the current media
landscape and succumbing (ever-so-slightly) to the changes led by the growing tide of streaming.
And allkey leading indicators (KLI) point to
a healthy video upfront market:
- Healthy scatter market, diminishing supply, strong demand, and ROC (rate of change) +20%
- Publishers reaching sell-out levels across video
- Streaming impressions are not increasing as quickly as linear
impressions are decreasing
- But, they’re still increasing, hence a migration to streaming
- Average time spent per day on
video remains relatively flat, balanced by a fall in linear viewing and a rise on connected device usage.
What changes in the
21/22 Upfront? The Upfront will become a video upfront. Linear-first publishers will bundle linear and digital video for a combined video guarantee, while
some publishers will forgo traditional demo guarantees for broader Persons 2+ or Persons 18+ guarantees and the marketplace will expand to OTT (Over-the-Top) video
What stays the same? Always a constant, consumer demand for premium video content and the power
of sight, sound, and motion to achieve brand objectives—whether they be awareness, consideration or conversion—will be the hottest commodities. As
video consumption evolves--placing the viewer in control of where, when and how they consume video content--marketers must evolve to adopt and
deploy a holistic video approach. Hence, the transformation to an upfront video marketplace.
What can you expect
from linear-first video publishers?
- To be bullish by commanding significant price increases.
- Requiring an investment in both linear
and digital video and providing a singular video guarantee.
- Flexibility to make good on under-delivery across their portfolio of
networks, which may include networks that are not purchased.
- Resistance to transparency and accountability to access content aligned.
with advertiser’s optimal video allocation strategies.
- Lack of Transparency in sharing their data as they create their own
How advertisers should approach the Upfront?
- Conduct a risk assessment to identify if or to what degree your business is
comfortable investing in the Video Upfront and map out a holistic video strategy.
- Reassess the role of video within your marketing mix.
- Evaluate key publishers and
the value each brings to your plan relative to their cost.
- Finally, and most importantly, buy TV like you watch TV. It’s all video regardless of when, where and on what device
it’s being watched.