By Sahil Patel
Is measurement the key to unlocking TV-sized ad dollars for online video programming? Why? If not, what is?
Dan Goodman, Co-Founder, Believe Entertainment Group:
“It’s not really the measurement as much as the underlying shift in what metrics are becoming most valued. Digital video finds itself between two worlds in digital and TV. And increasingly, digital video’s ability to deliver, or compete, in a TV metrics landscape has become the bigger story than engagements, clicks, conversions, and all of the digital direct response metrics that had governed much of the conversation to date. The major video dollars flow from TV and the object has always been to shift those dollars toward digital video. Now that the audience watching premium video in digital channels is proving far more stable and credible, there’s a real case to be made going forward. It only stands to reason that if you want to shift those dollars you better learn to talk TV.”
Jordan Levin, Defy Media:
“While measurement that offers an apples-to-apples comparison to online video and TV programming would certainly facilitate a more level playing field for ad dollars, ultimately, online video is disadvantaged in its competition for TV-sized ad dollars because of the difficulty in creating scarcity to drive those dollars. Every time a video is uploaded online that is aligned with an ad unit, the overall volume of online video ad inventory is increased. Unless an online video distributor limits available inventory around content that’s attractive to advertisers, or the producer and distributor of online programming creates unique, customized, and discrete opportunities for brand sponsorship and integration, or the integration of social media and online programming provides an opportunity for engagement beyond what television can offer, I think it will be difficult for online video programming to drive pricing given the overabundance of advertising available.”
Larry Tanz, CEO, Vuguru:
“Within the advertising-supported model, to sustain half-hour or hour-long content, a comparable revenue target for TV is needed, as the production costs have not changed, only the distribution mechanism has shifted (to a VOD environment).
Creating apples-to-apples comparisons of viewers between TV and online is critical to even begin the conversation about unlocking TV dollars. We still have a long way to go there.
The big dollars in online comes from creating engagement and ROI metrics that TV cannot match. For example, if General Motors can market their new electric vehicle directly to people who are considering buying a Chevy Volt, that’s hugely valuable. It’s more than just targeting an ad spend. Also, in an on-demand world of online video, you don’t get the simultaneous aggregation of audience that you get in a live sporting event on TV, or the premiere of a new season of ‘Modern Family’ — those dollars will be tough to get.”
Erin McPherson, Chief Content Officer, Maker Studios:
“The lack of standardized measurement for advertisers is a critical issue, but it’s also a complex one. There are myriad ways an advertiser receives value online, and thus it may not be as simple as plugging into a single measurement system. There are also myriad issues around privacy and proprietary technology that come into play. The good news is we are working on all of these issues as an industry and we all want to create the best ecosystem for both consumers and advertisers.”
Check back as we continue adding thoughts about this topic, and others, throughout the week as part of our “NATPE Voices” series. If you haven’t registered to attend NATPE (which is next week!), you can do so here. Or you can subscribe to VideoInk’s newsletter (via the homepage), through which we are offering a special discount!