What do these towering media dynasties mean for brands? Rita Ferro, Disney president of ad sales and partnerships, tells Cynopsis the crossover between brands already advertising on the company’s newly acquired Fox networks and existing nets is 85 percent-90 percent—a scenario that enables a core message to be threaded through multiple touch points.
“Each one of these brands owns an audience and adds incremental reach, incremental audience opportunity,” she says. “Especially when you think about broad brands that want to reach a multitude of audiences—think of CPG, think of telecom, think of tech companies—the ability to say, ‘Here are our key goals and metrics,’ and then that comes to life in an organic process within each brand. The same team is managing the experiences and understands what the deliverables are.”
Similarly, “You see the holistic view of the entirety of WarnerMedia in the presentation,” says Donna Speciale, WarnerMedia president of ad sales, of the company’s Upfront.
At NBCU, “From a network standpoint, where we typically talked in silos—entertainment, sports, Olympics—this year we’re talking about it all together as one and widening the aperture of what prime time is,” says Mark Marshall, president of ad sales & partnership. “We want to be able to offer a consumer or a marketer the ability to watch live or within their own schedule.”
Steve Mandala, Univision president of ad sales and marketing, notes the market is experiencing “continued, but heightened, dedication to find ways to create greater reach at efficient economics that yields real business results. Because our audience is inherently targeted and exclusive, we are a great choice in a media world that is increasingly fragmented.”
Adding to the fragmented market will be the upcoming Disney+, and WarnerMedia and NBCU direct-to-consumer services.
WarnerMedia’s service, due next year, is “right in our sweet spot of what we’ve been talking about,” Speciale says. “The industry has definitely added way too many commercials and the experience is just not ideal. With this, we now have a fresh start with a blank slate where we can say, ‘What does this new consumer—Gen X, Gen Z—what do they want? And it gives us a little leeway also on our linear outlets as well. As we try to reduce our commercials in the linear platform, we’ll be able to bring it all together.”
Although measurement is still playing catch-up, the science of targeting those and other demos continues to evolve with advances in precision targeting.
As part of the WarnerMedia fam, Turner left the OpenAP consortium it helped launch and is now using AT&T’s Xander platform. “The key is relevancy. Having now access to AT&T data, we now can really hone in on the targeting and the audience conversations we’ve had. The messaging now, in this new landscape, is clients are going to know who they are trying to target and have their messaging exactly to that audience. It’s going to be a much more one-to-one conversation, and advertising is going to be more acceptance because it wont look like an intrusion.”
For its part, OpenAP—which counts Fox, NBCU and Viacom as members—recently expanded its advanced advertising efforts and launched a centralized premium video marketplace called OpenAP 2.0 through which advertisers can submit orders to activate ad segments across national linear and long-form digital video.
Univision, also a member of OpenAP, recently partnered with Amobee to provide an optimization platform for its linear content, enabling advertisers to plan and transact against custom strategic target audiences with a data-optimized television offering.
“Precision targeting is table stakes in today’s media environment,” Mandala says. “Through this partnership, we have the capability to utilize over 2 million enriched, first-party Univision consumer records to provide behaviorally targeted plans totally unique to Univision.”