NewFront Speakers See Advertisers Changing Channels From Traditional TV

Digital video advertising sellers are pretty full of themselves as the annual NewFronts start today and run through Thursday. After a pandemic that accelerated streaming in general and connected TV usage in particular, digital video sellers are no longer pitching their products as just targeting vehicles or reach extenders. No, they’ve gone mainstream, insisting that digital video is now the primary way to reach viewers.

Magnite Closes $1.1B SpotX Acquisition

The deal creates the largest independent CTV and video ad platform. Clients include A+E Networks, AMC Networks, Crackle, Discovery, Fox, fuboTV, LG, Roku, Samsung, Sling TV and Vizio.

QUARTERLY REPORT

Google’s First Quarter Ad Sales Surge 32%, Alphabet Profit Doubles

The robust first quarter advertising growth announced Tuesday provides the latest sign that advertisers are expecting the economy to roar back to life as more people get vaccinated against COVID-19 and burst out of their pandemic cocoons.

Comcast Advertising Appoints Growth Strategy VP

In the newly created role, Rick Mandler will be responsible for formulating growth marketing strategies across the Comcast Advertising portfolio.

Facebook Begins Testing Ads In Instagram Reels

Media Buyers Upbeat As Upfronts Near, But See Shift To Programmatic

Media buyers are more optimistic in 2021, but they said they’re looking to spend less upfront and more programmatically, according to a study by the IAB. The group said that optimism among buyers has increased in just the past five month when its last survey was taken. In the new survey 21% were very confident and 40% were confident. Just 11% of buyers said they were not confident.

In The Roaring Twenties, Ads Make A Comeback

Subscriptions may be the rage, but businesses of all sorts are pouring money into advertising — digital most of all.

Internet Ad Spending Surged 12.2% In ’20

Despite — or maybe because of — the COVID-19 pandemic, internet ad spending soared 12.2% during 2020 to $139.8 billion, according to a just-released annual report from the Interactive Advertising Bureau and PwC.

Facebook Unveils New Ad Units Tailored For Streamers

To tap into the burgeoning online video streaming marketplace, Facebook today introduced a new advertising unit formatted specifically to promote subscription video-on-demand (SVOD) services via Facebook’s feeds. The new units, dubbed “Dynamic Ads for Streaming,” or DAS, are aimed at film and/or TV streaming advertisers, enabling them to automatically generate unique ads for each of their titles without the need to configure individual ads.

Google: Advanced Ad Impressions Bounced Back After COVID

After a dip in the second quarter as spending paused in the early days of the pandemic, advanced TV ad impressions rebounded as 2020 went on, according to a report from Google. Advanced ad impressions fell 18% in the second quarter, despite a 14% increase in viewing. By the third quarter, advanced TV ad impressions were up 40% from the second quarter lows and continued to increase in the fourth quarter.

Google Begins Testing Browser-Based Ad Targeting In U.S.

Google this week began testing its controversial cookie-less tracking and targeting system, which relies on placing Chrome users into audience segments based on their web-browsing history, and then transmitting data about those segments directly to publishers. The company has enrolled “a small percentage” of users in the United States and other countries in tests of its new, so-called “Federated Learning of Cohorts.”

Extreme Reach Recognized With TAG Certified Against Fraud Seal

Extreme Reach (ER), the asset management solution for TV and video ads, has been awarded the TAG Certified Against Fraud Seal by the Trustworthy Accountability Group (TAG). The certification recognizes ER for adopting industry best practices to combat fraudulent traffic across the digital advertising supply chain. As a global initiative fighting criminal activity and protecting […]

With NFL Deal, Amazon Accelerates Its Streaming TV Advertising Ambitions

NewFronts Draw New Participants Including A+E, Amazon, Entrecom, Estrella, Vizio

Several new companies will be presenting to media buyers at this year’s NewFronts, including A+E Networks, Amazon, Entrecom, Estrella Media, Penske Media and Vizio. This year’s event showcasing digital video uses the slogan “living the stream” to capture changes in media behavior that were accelerated by the COVID-19 pandemic. The event will be conducted virtually, like last year, and take place May 3 through May 6, the week before the major TV companies are scheduled to  make their upfront presentations.

NBCU To Seek Primetime TV Rates For Streaming Peacock Ads

In what will likely be one of the fiercest haggles in the recent history of TV, NBCU will seek primetime TV rates for ads that run on its Peacock streaming-video service, says Laura Molen, president of advertising sales and partnerships, in an interview.  NBCU has invested heavily in Peacock, believes it gives advertisers the broad reach they need and has worked to make sure commercials on the service stand out, says Molen, noting Peacock runs only five minutes of ads per hour and features a host of special commercial formats.

Advertisers Slam Connecticut’s Proposed Digital Ad Tax

Connecticut is the latest state to take aim at the big pockets of Big Tech with a proposed digital ad tax, and it is not sitting well with advertisers. The Association of National Advertisers has come out strongly against SB 821, a bill that would levy a 10% tax on digital ad services in the state on any business with annual gross revenues (worldwide) of more than $10 billion.

T-Mobile To Target Ads Based On Subscribers’ Web Browsing, App Use

IAB Releases New Guidelines For AI’s Use In Digital Advertising

As ad-tech companies consider AI alternatives to cookies and other third-party trackers, the Interactive Advertising Bureau is releasing new guidelines and best practices for the use of machine learning at every level of digital advertising production.

Roku’s Nielsen Deal Means It Can Make Money Off Traditional TV Viewers. Here’s How

Roku’s deal for Nielsen’s advertising video business boosts the size of its potential market and makes it more valuable to programmers going directly after consumers, an analyst at KeyBanc Capital Markets said Wednesday. Earlier this week, streaming platform Roku said it was buying Nielsen’s Advanced Video Advertising unit, which includes technology that makes it easier for advertisers to target specific audiences.

Facebook To Lift Ban On Political Ads

Facebook will resume allowing political advertising on its platform starting Thursday, ending a freeze that was put in place around the general election. “We put this temporary ban in place after the November 2020 election to avoid confusion or abuse following Election Day,” the company wrote in a blog post Wednesday.

Google To Stop Ad Sales Based On Users’ Browsing History

Google on Wednesday said it will stop selling ads based on tracking specific users from website to website — a major decision from the world’s biggest digital advertiser that will surely affect the entire industry moving forward.

EXECUTIVE SESSION WITH SHAWN MAKHIJANI

TVN Executive Session | NBC’s Spot On Sees $1.2B Local OTT Business In ’21

Shawn Makhijani, SVP of NBC’s advanced advertising service for local and regional buyers, says TV buys are becoming more holistic to embrace OTT, driven by a dramatic uptick in streaming viewing. “The rule of thumb is you want to get 20% of your local TV campaign to be OTT,” he says. Note: This story is available to TVNewsCheck Premium members only. If you would like to upgrade your free TVNewsCheck membership to Premium now, you can visit your Member Home Page, available when you log in at the very top right corner of the site or in the Stay Connected Box that appears in the right column of virtually every page on the site. If you don’t see Member Home, you will need to click Log In or Subscribe.

Vizio Launches Product That Controls Ad Frequency

Vizio Ads introduced Universal Frequency Control, a product that limited the number of time a viewer sees the same spot when an advertiser buys commercial inventory through the smart-TV set maker’s platform.

Tech Groups Sue Maryland Over Online Ad Tax

A coalition of trade organizations filed a lawsuit Thursday against the Maryland state government over passage of a bill that imposes a tax on digital ad revenue. The Computer & Communications Industry Association, along with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the Internet Association, sued Maryland Comptroller Peter Franchot (D). CCIA’s members include Amazon, eBay, Facebook, Google and Uber.

Gannett, McClatchy Team To Sell National Ads

Gannett’s USA Today national sales team will lead the go-to-market strategy on behalf of both companies. It will take the lead on pitching clients and agencies about the new partnership, which is being dubbed the “combined power of local.” Several new ad products will help national brands reach local audiences across the local news sites from the combined Gannett and McClatchy portfolios.

Md. Approves Country’s First Tax On Big Tech Ad Revenue

Analysts estimate that the tax will generate up to $250 million for schools in the state in the first year. It will also probably face fierce legal challenges.

Lori Tavoularis Named Nexstar Digital CRO

She will lead an expanded revenue team that includes Jennifer Scialbro, SVP of local digital sales and Wil Danielson, SVP of national digital sales.

WideOrbit Selects Tru Optik Data Marketplace To Power Streaming Audio And Podcast Audience Targeting

Tru Optik is partnering with WideOrbit, a provider of premium broadcast technology and the largest sell-side processor of premium digital and linear advertising. Tru Optik’s Data Marketplace will be integrated into WideOrbit’s Digital Suite to bring enhanced audience targeting to streaming radio and podcast advertising. With 37% of Americans (104 million) listening to podcasts monthly […]

AdAmp Kicks Offers TV Advertising Portal For Small Businesses

Massive CTV Advertising Fraud Scheme Detected

Another even larger advertising fraud scheme has been detected in the fast-growing but apparently vulnerable connected TV space. Dubbed ParrotTerra, the scam has managed to divert ad dollars by spoofing 3.7 million devices and 2.7 million IP addresses per day. DoubleVerify, a fraud monitoring service, estimates that ParrotTerra was on track to steal $30 million to $50 million.

Univision Signs On To Project OAR Consortium

The Spanish-language media company joins as a member of the primary steering committee dedicated to creating a standard by which all parties in the TV ecosystem can collaborate and unite on addressable advertising.

Paper Sues Google, Facebook Over Online Ads

“There is no longer a competitive market in which newspapers can fairly compete for online advertising revenue,” the owner of The Charleston Gazette-Mail and other West Virginia news publications said in a lawsuit in federal court on Friday. It accuses the companies of profiting from “anticompetitive and monopolistic practices” that have damaged the newspaper business.

Taboola, Purveyor Of Clickbait Ads, To Go Public

The content recommendation company is set to announce it will go public via Wall Street’s hottest trend — a publicly traded deal vehicle known as a SPAC. The deal values it at $2.6 billion.

IAB Goes Virtual, Features Fauci Keynote

The Interactive Advertising Bureau this morning unveiled highlights of the agenda for its annual conference, which will be held virtually March 8-12, and which will feature speakers such as Dr. Anthony Fauci, Sen. Ron Wyden and WPP CEO Mark Read.

Google To Pause Political Ads Through Inauguration

Google will suspend political ads along with any reference to “impeachment, inauguration or protests at the U.S. Capitol” beginning Thursday. The ban will run through the day after President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration on several platforms.

Google Must Face Claims It Overcharged For Pay-Per-Click Ads

 

A federal appellate court has revived a class-action complaint alleging that Google overcharged pay-per-click advertisers by reneging on a promise to discount some ads, and failing to limit ads by location.

How Google Is Hurting Local News

An audit reveals that Google News sends readers — and advertising dollars — away from local news outlets.

New Ad Fraud Scheme Highlights Growing Problem For Streaming TV

Oracle Corp.’s data cloud and measurement business said it detected a new instance of fraud in streaming television that likely impacted millions of dollars in advertising spending, signaling a growing problem for advertisers as they move more dollars into the medium.

Largest CTV Ad Scam Faked 29M Addresses

Scammers are following viewers as they go over the top, and what is described as the largest CTV ad fraud operations so far has been uncovered. Dubbed StreamScam, the operation exploited flaws in CTV ad service technology and spoofed more than 28.8 million U.S. household IP address, including 3,600 apps and 3,400 CTV device models. As much as $15 million worth of ad spending might have been diverted by the scam.

10 States Sue Google Over Ad Sales

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton announced the suit, which was filed in a federal court in Texas, saying Google is using its “monopolistic power” to control pricing of online advertisements, fixing the market in its favor and eliminating competition.