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John Osborn

Member since October 2011Contact John

John Osborn is an ad industry veteran who has transformed his traditional media background into digital advertising leadership roles. He headed up media planning and buying for numerous BBDO and OMD blue chip clients from Visa and FedEx to DuPont and Eli Lilly. He subsequently was first North American Business Development Director for Teads, the ad tech start-up that invented outstream video advertising. Teads was acquired in 2017 by Dutch telco Altice for $307MM. As a Prohaska Consulting team member, he co-authored industry white papers on Programmatic for the Local TV, Radio and Digital OOH industries. Currently he is Co-Founder and CMO for Turnstīl, the breakthrough rewarded advertising format that gives consumers a choice when accessing normally-paid content: sign up for a subscription offer – or – click to engage with a sequentially interactive ad where in 45 seconds or less they can gain immediate limited access. John has written and continues to write for several industry publications, and served for many years as a Media Post Video Insider.

Articles by John All articles by John

  • To Disable Fast-Forwarding Or Not? That Is The Question! in Digital News Daily on 09/27/2017

    The rapid expansion of single provider and skinny bundle SVOD (streaming video-on-demand) services has unearthed an important question: Does disabling fast-forwarding hurt or help the ad-supported revenue model?

  • In On-Demand World, It's Time For On-Demand Video Advertising in Video Insider on 08/31/2016

    It's time to move video advertising out of the middle of the content stream, and right to the front of the interactive content activation experience. It's time to put the viewing of advertising in the hands of the user, just as we've done for content. It's time for a gateway unit that commands high CPMs from brand advertisers, is fully viewed and listened to through consumer activation, and allows users to opt out of in-stream interruptions by opting in to an advertiser message.

  • What Has Technology Wrought? Trust Issues, For One  in Video Insider on 03/22/2016

    I'm enthused about the potential for programmatic TV and video, and all digital ad forms, to change for the better in the ways advertising is bought and sold. But there are some things that I want to feel better about before I would advise any buyer or seller to put all their eggs in the programmatic basket.

  • Vast Difference In Program & Ad Viewing Highlighted By Millennials Stats in Video Insider on 01/20/2016

    There was a time when television program viewing was a perfect surrogate for ad viewership. Since the remote control - the first ad-avoidance technology - that surrogacy relationship has devolved to next to nothing. The good news for producers of television and video programming is that the content form is alive and well, and much in demand by young and old alike.The bad news is that this newfangled World Wide Web distribution channel has not only stripped power from legacy distributors and given power to new technologies, but has provided the most effective ad-avoidance tools ever. Content viewing and ad viewing are officially divorced. Viewing and ad consumption by young adults and teens today suggest it won't be coming back soon, unless a very different business model emerges.

  • Should There Be A New Category Of Video Buying: Silent Video? in Video Insider on 09/23/2015

    The power of traditional television has always been conveyed in three little convincing words used for ages by CMOs, agency media strategists and creatives alike: "sight, sound and motion." Now with new and fragmenting distribution channels for television/video (T/V) including online, mobile and OOH, these qualities have been fragmented, causing advertisers to face at least five different types of viewer experience.

  • Are Legacy, Analog Media Ad Sellers 'Milking' The Business Model? in Video Insider on 08/10/2015

    I was surprised when I recently tripped over a Verizon SuperPages book on my Brooklyn stoop. Are there still advertisers that pay to be listed - even some that buy display ads - in these ever-shrinking, yet still mass-distributed, printed business phone directories? Is this a case of "milking" the business model by Verizon, whose core business as a leading mobile service provider and recent purchaser of AOL is clearly digital? Does anyone under 75 actually page through such a directory to find telephone numbers?

  • Time For Television/Video To Adopt 'Host & Guest' Model in Video Insider on 07/16/2015

    It's time for T/V to get over its longtime love affair with the "cat and mouse" approach to advertising. Can you imagine the hospitality business constantly hounding their guests to do something they don't want to -- that has nothing to do with the reason they have come to the venue? We need a bold media company to step up and make explicit a new contract with and for consumers, becoming a gracious host that respects a valued guest, as in other businesses.

  • Unbundling Needn't Be End of Profitable Revenue For MVPDs  in Video Insider on 06/05/2015

    One of the great emotional tug-of-war battles going on in television and video today is around the issue of unbundled vs. bundled content. I believe it is about to hit the pocketbooks of traditional television providers. Holding one end of the "rope" are MVPDs (multichannel video programming distributors like cable, satellite and telco companies) who package thousands of programming options in bundled offerings at significant cost to subscribers.The other end of the "rope" is held by the media consumer - and as is the case in a real tug-of-war, the youngest demographic groups are anchoring the effort to have more choice and more control over final costs than the older demographics, who grew up with bundled television.

  • My 'Mad Men' VOD Experience: What It Means For TV Business Model in Video Insider on 05/04/2015

    Video-on-demand (VOD) is a benefit of a viewer cable subscriptions, but still not front and center in the television ad model discussion. So where does it stand as an ad medium today? I had a chance to find out in a snapshot experience when my family forgot to DVR the first three programs of of the final half-season of "Mad Men" on AMC.

  • Is 'Programmatic' The Right Word For Automated T/V Advertising? in Video Insider on 03/12/2015

    Language certainly matters. In recent industry conversations, I perceive a hesitancy to use the word "programmatic" in the emerging T/V supply-side space. Instead, I am hearing more and more companies use the phrase "automated ad sales" rather than "programmatic." Is this euphemism necessary?

Comments by John All comments by John

  • Will Streaming Video Air Ads After Pause Button Is Hit? by Wayne Friedman (TV Watch on 12/07/2018)

    I appreciate this Doug: "I keep waiting for the ethically-challenged advertising industry to hijack all of the proliferating screens in my life: My refrigerator door, my thermostat, my computer screensaver, my car navigation, my cell phone ... no place will be safe.."

  • How Will TV Networks Handle Legacy Buyers? by Wayne Friedman (TV Watch on 05/25/2018)

    Great piece, Wayne and good question Eric.The upfronts have thrived and commanded significant annual increases because in a supply and demand marketplace, reduced supply leads to higher annual CPMs. The networks are right to care about consumer experience, but may well be too late since they've already been trained to avoid commercials, regardless of pod length. It's time to make the further adjustment to second-by-second ratings, so the advertiser can know whether ads have actually been seen - live or in full time replay, and not via fast-forwarding. That would offset any increases demanded by the networks for fewer ads, by finally tying cost/value to actual viewing of an ad (not program, not average half hour of commercials, not just recorded and replayed). Automatic Content Recognition (ACR) technology in the soon to be 75% of TVs that are Smart TVs can provide this.

  • Skinny TV Bundles Could Impact Ad-Free DVR Watching by Wayne Friedman (TV Watch on 04/17/2017)

    Thanks Wayne - great piece. As a former agency planner and buyer, I always knew some commercials were being avoided. We all (content providers and agencies) got too greedy in the 1990s when TV networks could make more money with more ads, and buyers could keep prices down with more supply. DVRs and now ad-blockers have put technology for ad-avoidence in the hands of the consumer. No one, especially younger viewers who have no intention of buying bundled cable, will willingly be "forced" to watch commercials. Such options, I believe, are a strategy by the networks for up-selling to higher cost commercial-free streaming services. See recent CBS All Access/The Good Fight marketing that supports this theory. Where does that leave advertisers? It's time to rethink the entire approach to T/V (TV & Video) buying and using technology to track viewability on a census level data. It's time for paying a higher CPM for ads that are actually seen, and end the cat and mouse game.

  • Doesn't Matter What I Watched, If I Didn't See Your Ad by George Simpson (MediaDailyNews on 03/30/2017)

    Thought provoking piece George! In the past, we needed to use TV program viewership ratings as a surrogate for audience. We still don't have pure ad unit ratings for TV. Thanks to VOD, mobile and online video we now can get close to understanding whether a viewer is watching or not based on whether the ad was on screen while the viewer is interacting with that screen. Linear TV is still far behind mobile and online video and the future I beleive is in VOD or PPV for tradtional TV providers. As interactivity becomes more a part of T/V (TV/Video) advertising, it will provide a better way of asking - "are you still there?"

  • In On-Demand World, It's Time For On-Demand Video Advertising by John R. Osborn (Video Insider on 08/31/2016)

    Good question. What if the ad was interactive, and agreed to by the media consumer as a fair exchange for content? That way the cost to the consumer is engaged advertising, with access to content and no more interruptions thereafter. As a former buyer, I would pay a significant premium for proven engagement that the consumer agrees to.

  • In On-Demand World, It's Time For On-Demand Video Advertising by John R. Osborn (Video Insider on 08/31/2016)

    Thanks Ed Papazian for your comments. The idea is to employ this "gateway" approach like newpapers employ soft or hard paywalls, except that to access video content, there would be an on-demand advertising "viewing key" to open the paywall for each piece of content. A YouTube clip might have a :15 second ad, a 15 minute video perhaps 30 seconds. A half hour might ask for a :30 or :45, while an hour of TV content might be a :60. Full length feature film length content could command 1:30 (all examples).I totally agree that this is a testable proposition, and deserves a market test on some video content provider that currently runs video ads in pre-roll and mid-roll positions.

  • Are Video Ads The Next Digital Bubble? by Paolo Gaudiano (Video Insider on 06/09/2015)

    It will be interesting to see if your prediction comes true Paolo. Brand advertisers and agencies for years have paid high premiums to TV networks and local TV for the opportunity to view an ad, with no guarantees of engagement or viewability. And lengthy TV ad pods have been high on the list of most intrusive, interruptive methods to deliver a marketing message. Yet television still commands high premiums because that's the way it's always been done. As that money shifts from TV (television) to T/V (Television/Video), will advertisers finally demand guaranteed viewability, and be willing to pay for it? There's a shortage of premium pre-roll inventory right now. So your questions of when, how and why are fascinating to ponder and to watch as the marketplace responds.

  • Will Programmatic TV Go Mainstream This Year? by Ben Plomion (Programmatic Insider on 03/10/2015)

    Excellent overview and conclusions Ben. I love when writing clearly explains and supports ideas that all sides and levels of expertise can benefit from.

  • Brand Safety Tips For 'Wild West' Of Multiplatform, Internet-Distributed T/V by John R. Osborn (Video Insider on 07/23/2014)

    Thanks James. What I meant was there is no sense of whether a viewer is even in the room when passive linear television is running an advertisement at a certain time, or that if VCR'd that the ad was seen for the minimum or maximum time within the pod that many or even most viewers are zipping through. With instream or outstream video online or on mobile, at least there is a record that a user-initiated click or scrolling action initiated a video start that can me measured against minimum or completed viewing.

  • New Viewability Guidelines Bring Much-Needed Third Dimension To Ad Buying by John R. Osborn (Video Insider on 04/04/2014)

    Thanks Ken. No doubt, things are going to get very interesting in the next year as the industry really absorbs this. Perhaps the basis of a reality T/V program: "Real buyers of T/V"?

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