End-to-end automated buying within the Strata platform removes common barriers to buying premium OTT video. It opens up access to OTT marketplace for all Strata clients, from agency holding companies to independent media buying shops.
Today, Comcast’s FreeWheel Advertisers division has launched new OTT buying capabilities for agencies and advertisers. FreeWheel Advertisers’ network of 1,200-plus agencies using the Strata platform can now programmatically access the full OTT marketplace through exchanges and direct premium publisher integrations.
The company said that while these capabilities are available to all Strata users, the offering is particularly important for mid-size and independent media buying agencies. These shops are often faced with barriers to efficiently buy OTT inventory, including minimum spend levels enforced by demand-side platforms (DSPs), the complexity of managing multiple campaigns for local clients across different vendors and geographies, and lack of transparency in ad placements.
“Our clients are very interested in tapping into new opportunities to connect with audiences on OTT, but the solutions available to them don’t meet the needs of every agency,” said FreeWheel Advertisers General Manager Joy Baer. “We developed this new industry offering for our clients based on their collective input, which included the expressed need for geo-targeting, greater transparency and pricing efficiency. By solving for these challenges, we’ve opened up OTT for a new base of buyers.”
“The expectation for our media team is to be metric-obsessed and ambidextrous in all forms. FreeWheel empowers buyers by allowing them to be more agile and to make smarter, more integrated decisions faster,” said Adam Herman, chief integrated media officer, Zimmerman Advertising. “Their latest solutions around OTT are an example of this type of empowerment.”
FreeWheel Advertisers executes the buys through an integration with Simpli.fi, a DSP purpose-built to meet the complexities of localized campaigns. This integration makes it easy for Strata users to buy OTT programmatically, similar to the way they buy digital media. Moreover, there is no minimum spend generally charged by DSPs, and no need to leave the existing workflow that buyers use every day for media buying and management.
“Our partnership with FreeWheel Advertisers is a natural fit, as we have focused on building a programmatic platform that executes and optimizes high volumes of campaigns with precise targeting and efficient pricing,” said Frost Prioleau, CEO, Simpli.fi. “We look forward to working together on seamlessly bringing OTT solutions to Strata users, at the local level and beyond.”
FreeWheel Advertisers plans to extend its local OTT programmatic offering to all forms of TV, beginning in the second half of 2019.