There are a lot of questions swirling these days about how ad spending is going to be reallocated given the virus’s interruption of live sports. I’ll be publishing a series of short interviews with industry thought-leaders sharing their current experiences and what changes they’re seeing due to the virus. The first interview is with Jeremy Steinberg, Global Head of Ecosystem, MediaMath, which is an adtech company serving brands and their partners (also known as a demand side platform).
VideoNuze: What are you seeing so far from clients in terms of shifting spending from live content (e.g. sports, etc.) that have been cancelled to AVOD?
Jeremy Steinberg: Brands and agencies are obviously rethinking their marketing strategies. Because we are seeing a significant uptick in OTT viewership as daily consumer behavior is shifting with more individuals staying at home and we have recommended to our clients that they should re-invest their media budgets into home-based channels most specifically CTV. We are seeing budgets pulled from live sports and many other channels including experiential. Quality of the content has never been more critical, as clients across all industry verticals demand the purity of the connections between brands and consumers. They are focused on reaching real people on real devices, as we see consumers purchasing more goods and services and streaming more content at home.
VideoNuze: Anything else you’d add on the shift to CTV?
JS: We are devising strategies to help marketers navigate these challenging times as their customer base moves to 100% digital and CTV is definitely a key component. Although it is not the only beneficiary of our focused strategy this channel is definitely one of the biggest beneficiaries of this shift in spend.
VideoNuze: To the extent CTV is biggest beneficiary, any more info on targeting tradeoffs being made, at least temporarily? Is new CTV spend primarily contextual-based or other attributes?
JS: In addition to reworking channel mix we are also working with our clients to expand or supplement their existing targeting strategies given the changing consumption patterns. We are focused on finding our clients desired audiences always but looking at historical interests and content to determine the most appropriate strategies. There is no one option currently bring prioritized, but we are definitely taking into consideration all viewing habits and content types to help work through the right mix that will drive the largest benefit to our clients. I think one other point to highlight is our focus on premium content across all channels as a key priority and focus. This is paramount to the value that SOURCE brings to market and we are holding true to that with CTV strategies.
VideoNuze: Is the virus/spending shift accelerating more clients to gain exposure to CTV and will this have an impact in 2nd half of ’20 and beyond? (In other words, slope of growth curve in CTV ad spend sharper through ’21 or beyond?)
JS: Going forward we believe CTV will continue to be a large priority for us and our clients and can envision the strategies deployed and learnings from these trying times being built into future strategies which should continue to drive growth in this channel.
VideoNuze: What else is MediaMath up to?
JS: We just announced our partnership with Rakuten and its Video On Demand (VOD) platform in Europe, which delivers premium content from all major film studios and distributors to about 90 million households across 42 countries on multiple devices. This partnership, made available through SSP SpotX, will enable MediaMath clients in Europe to extend customer reach from traditional digital marketing to TV and Expand OTT/CTV budgets to capture those audiences.