"That's the outcome that matters," Disney Advertising President Rita Ferro said, while hosting its upfront ad presentation at New York City's Javits Center last week.
She was talking about measuring the impact Disney's massive audience graph has for advertisers, something other big TV-legacy rivals like NBCUniversal, Paramount Global and Warner Bros. Discovery have also been trumpeting during the upfronts. But Ferro's pitch was different in one big way, because of her all-in commitment to the concept.
Unlike her rivals, Ferro did not tout audience-measurement currencies -- either Nielsen's legacy one or the multitude of new alternative ones being pushed by others -- but focused exclusively on Disney's scalable audience graph and the unique relationship the audience has with Disney's content. And by proxy, its advertisers.
She called it "the foundation of our business today," noting: "We own our own tech and we own our audience graph."
In other words, she didn't hedge.
And while Disney likely will do business on the basis of whatever currency its customers want to use -- just like its rivals -- her message was consistent and pure: It's all about the identity of devout Disney content consumers, and demonstrating how they can move a brand's advertising and marketing goals.
"With 250 million identifiers that represent 112 million households across hundreds of thousands of audience attributes," she noted, explaining how Disney's massive owned audience graph can "paint the picture of your consumer" and "enables targeting with precision."
So to reiterate Ferro's assertion that "the next best action" is the only one that should matter to marketers and their agencies, it also apparently matters to Disney's shareholders.
"You heard it last week in our earnings call: Over one-third of our advertising transactions today happen programmatically, and close to half of these are using real-time ad decisioning.
"it's about choice and control. We put the power in your hands to place dollars in the way that works for you and your business, whether you want to do that direct, on-demand, programmatically or with guarantees."
She closed by making a stunning prediction: "That's why we know every single upfront deal this year will have programmatic at its core."
I wonder what percent of the ABC broadcast TV network's ad dollars will be bought programmatically---with the computers making the selling and buying decsisions---not people---this year. Same question for ESPN? Anyone care to hazzard a guess?