Marketing

Media Buyers: Long Live Advanced Ads!

2/27/2012 12:01 AM Eastern

Despite Canoe Ventures’ decision to
leave the interactive-advertising business, advanced
advertising is far from dead, media buyers
said last week.

Advanced advertising has been moving forward
in fits and starts and there was hope that Canoe,
put together by the major cable operators, could
create a national standard-bearer for interactivity,
addressability and data gathering.

“The premise of Canoe was absolutely right on
the premise of collaborations. So what happened
was not everyone was in the boat together,” Tracey
Scheppach, executive vice president and innovations
director at media agency VivaKi and its SMGx
unit, said.

In addition to some friction among its partners,
“they forgot about the advertisers and their agencies,”
Scheppach added. “This is going to make my job a lot
harder because a collaboration is what we need.”

“I think it’s going to be discouraging at first,”
Mike Bologna, director of emerging communications
at media agency GroupM, said. He said that
Canoe’s vision was to offer a one-stop shop that
would nationalize advanced TV.

“The national TV buyer [would be] much more
comfortable buying interactive and addressable functionality
from their broadcast or cable network counterparts
than they are from a cable system, a satellite
system or some type of ad-hoc third party,” Bologna
said. “And that’s not going to happen.”

But “advanced advertising will continue to progress
and will move on with our without Canoe,” Bologna
noted. “Canoe definitely gave it their best
shot. I take my hat off to [former CEOs] David [Verklin]
and Cathy [Timko] and everybody involved, but
the game isn’t going to stop because Canoe folds.”

Scheppach said her agency and its clients believe
that addressability was more important than the
interactivity on which Canoe had focused. “Being
able to measure [advertising] and address it is so
much more important than being able to interact
with it,” she said. “There’s just so much more value
created there.”

In terms of addressability, satellite operators and
telcos, not brought in as part of Canoe, are further
along on deploying addressability at the individual
household level, Scheppach said. “They have more
than a paddle. They have a motor boat, she says.
And while they have fewer homes than the cable
industry, “I’ll take it at this point.”

“The good news from my own perspective is right
now in 2012 addressability is here. Dish Network, DirecTV,
Cablevision, Verizon, they all have an addressable
product in market today and I think advertisers
are going to focus on that for this current year. I know
mine are,” Bologna said. “With that, once we get the
right message to the right households, the interactive
overlays and the interactive components will become
that much more valuable.”

Bologna added that even though Canoe has withdrawn,
there are still 60 million cable households
with interactive capabilities. “That’s going to force
us to rethink how we utilize them on behalf of our
clients,” he said.


Jon Lafayette is business editor of Broadcasting &
Cable.
March