Blog: Addressable TV @dmexco 2018


dmexco, the event, meeting place & a community for key players in digital business, marketing and advertising. We went to see how addressable TV market is doing.

Shortly: TV is still seen as THE media to build brand awareness and reach. Addressable TV must happen.

Connected TV, or CTV, were a platform on which many were involved in projects monetising applications and content within CTV portals. However, none worked with linear broadcast content, it was all streaming and in-app advertising. Whether this is addressable TV or not, ..? The challenge pointed out by many is the number of platforms and versions to manage and support.

Analysing advertising performance is crucial for advertisers and media agencies in their campaign planning. It is just as important to broadcasters to optimise their inventory. As companies become more and more familiar of real-time reporting and KPIs the TV audience panels and “two week reporting delay” is seen as “outdated”, especially when talking with the digital only businesses like Zalando and others, who have big TV marketing campaigns. TV spot reporting has been addressed mostly with audio finger-printing in order to know when the spot runs. It is missing the real-time audience data, which can be added once the panel data is available. Check our Audience Measurement -solution for data gathering.

Data, data is king say some, is another interesting topic at DMEXCO and many considered TV as the anchor for a household that can be used to link other devices to be used for cross-device re-targeting, especially with the spot run-times. None of the current data providers was however able to offer the data input in order to achieve this in large-scale. Solutions based on HW are on offer, but are usually limited to a single CE manufacturer, limiting the reach considerably. It is a deal the providers need to make directly with the CE vendors and not all of the even offer that, e.g. Samsung.

Not to forget Addressable TV, it was clearly a hot topic for digital savvy advertisers.
Back to Addressable TV in linear, which is a daily business in Germany and Czech. From both markets we got input from media agencies that the demand is there. Broadcasters are unfortunately quite slow in deploying these new ad-formats, but as advertisers demand is there, the situation is forecasted to change soon.

Many seemed to fear on the technical risk, that something unwanted will happen on the TV, black-screen being the worst case scenario. However user surveys by a broadcasters have shown that frame-accuracy is not a requirement on video replacement. Viewers have gotten used to some “black” in their video experience, thanks to online video I would guess. Another commonly approach to start with Addressable TV was to begin with broadcasters own program promotion, but using addressable TV formats. This way they can gather experience and peace-of-mind before introducing these new ad formats to advertisers.

There is clearly a lot of happening under the radar. What we need to do to convince the broadcasters to open their inventory is to offer un-parallel risk free technical platform. TV works, period, and the user experience must be paramount.  This is something we have been working hard to achieve and I believe we are there. More on our solution can be found here.

All in all DMEXCO was a very fruitful trip and recommended to anyone working with addressable TV. I believe it will be a topic on almost every booth in 2019.

all tv is digital, all digital is addressable

Blog: Making Addressable TV happen

Data driven advertising is making it’s way to broadcasters’ linear offering and offering clear benefits to all parties: viewers, advertisers and broadcasters. Addressable TV is changing TV Advertising and the time to jump the bandwagon is now.

As we all know TV advertising has been stagnant or experienced only minor growth during the last years, while digital ad spend have been growing rapidly and have finally in 2017 overtaken globally TV advertising in terms of spending. Magna’s ( the research arm of media buying firm IPG Mediabrands) research shows us that in 2017 digital ad spending reached $209 billion (41%) worldwide , while TV brought in $178 billion (35%). Addressable TV is just a fraction of that now with huge growth potential.

Youtube just copied broadcasters way of doing advertising

Thanks to their simplicity and reach Facebook and Google take lions share of the digital ad spend. Surprisingly In-stream Video is the only Desktop digital ad form that is growing, and look what YouTube did to it, they copied the advertising business model from broadcasters. Brands can now pay per impression not per completed in-stream ad. They call it TrueView for Reach. I think it is a big change on the way digital video advertising has been marketed until now, as an accountable, addressable ad-form. It is clearly targeted to lure major brands from TV, a way for them more easily compare the TV ad spend agains in-stream video ad spend.

Video advertising is really changing and fortunately broadcasters still have the best tool in their arsenal: quality content (that meets brands’ safety requirements). It is still the main driver for people to spend hours watching their screen, TV, Mobile or Desktop. It just lures the big audiences.

TV is unbeatable for delivering brand value

Besides, linear TV still has it supporters as it is unbeatable, as found by  Neustar research studyvehicle to convey corporate brand value and an effective means to reach big audiences, and it is the last ad platform not dominated by the duo-poly Facebook/Google. TV is not going anywhere, regardless of what the “digital gurus” are saying.

Data is the crown-prince

Pre-rolls and other in-stream formats have long been daily business in broadcasters’ online services but linear TV has been missing what other platform offer, addressability and “tracking” to put it bluntly. Data is becoming the crown-prince and it is a must to move linear advertising to the digital personalised era. Using Data in linear TV specifically helps marketers to optimise their TV spend between different TV type, networks and times.

Data would also surely enable broadcasters to justify an increase on ad prices, even while audiences are declining. Broadcasters should not look no further that Addressable TV to re-launch their linear ad offering, the era after the 30s spot.

Addressable TV should help broadcasters to protect them from the giant Internet companies for the un-seen future as it can offer various benefits for them :

  • detailed analytics of linear ad-views as viewers behaviour can be monitored per second
  • growing revenues by adding big data to linear TV inventory
  • bringing new advertisers to the TV ad market by offering affordable personalised niche segments
  • generate increased revenues by applying rich consumer data to TV inventory
  • enable new ad-inventory and ad-formats to increase total revenues

If the benefits are overwhelming and clear, the implementation may be a struggle to many, especially as advertising is based on reach. And honestly speaking, it hasn’t been there due to the lack of common distribution platform that support client side ad-insertion and would enable us to combine reach, real-time consumer viewing data and TV inventory. The variety of platforms have made it very difficult to deploy Addressable TV economically and to offer advertisers big enough audience.

Technical obstacles are meant to be beaten

Sun is shining upon us, HbbTV as a CE manufacturer supported platform is steadily growing and building a fan base around world to offer a common framework for broadcasters to build addressable TV offering. It holds all the key requirements usually only seen on vertical operator owned platform:

  1. broadcasters control of their ad-invetory, both linear and addressable tv -formats
  2. client side ad-insertion support
  3. hybrid environment enabling collection of real-time consumer viewing data
  4. standardised technical platform available on all receivers, HbbTV
  5. reach, 90% of new SmartTVs that are sold have HbbTV built-in

Addressable offers various formats that be either synchronised or non-synchronised with linear TV, such as

  1. SwitchIn 
  2. ActiveAd 
  3. VideoSwap
  4. ScheduledAd
  5. Retargeting campaigns

You may have never heard about the above formats, but the addressable TV best practices and industry ad-formats are still in making, the market is just starting with the most innovative broadcasters. A lot of first-in-the-world is taking place. My recommendation is to jump the bandwagon now to be part of the defining moment of TV advertising. It is also a good time to learn before the market is mature and it may become very expensive to make mistakes.

Addressable TV benefits everyone involved

The real take away from this blog is that Addressable TV benefits everyone involved:

  1. For advertisers it gives reach, but also enable them to target niche groups within linear TV
  2. Based on our research viewers value the fact that they get more relevant and informative advertising
  3. Broadcasters benefit as they can offer new advertising formats and show their advertisers exactly how their ad investment works. And Addressable TV opens new revenue streams for broadcasters.

I believe strongly that Addressable TV should have extremely high strategic importance to any broadcaster who wants to stay alive the tsunami of digital advertising; follow the lead that ProSiebenSat.1 is a setting by stating the importance also in their 2017 annual report.

We are at a turning point, there is no return to the linear TV advertising as we know it today.


Icareus Addressable TV Technical Specification


This document provides detailed technical details on Icareus Addressable TV Formats, +Activations and Creatives

Formats are: SwitchIn, ActiveAd, VideoSwap and Promote
+Activations are: Long-form video, Coupon, 1Pager and Microsite
Creatives: Leaderboard, Medium Rectangle, L-Banner, Video

For additional information please do not hesitate to contact us!

updated: 08.11.2018