AUSTIN — Media agency Horizon Media doesn’t think true programmatic ad buying is coming to television any time soon – but that isn’t stopping it from trying out some of programmatic’s techniques to understand ad targeting better nevertheless.

Horizon Media national TV SVP David Campanelli tells Beet.TV the company is using ad tech vendor Rovi’s Ad Optimizer tool together with ad spots on A+E Networks: “We’re going to take portions of our upfront spend on the books now, run that through the tool to optimizer against a higher index to reach our target customer for that particular advertiser.”

Campanelli likes the tool because “it’s built by people thinking from a TV standpoint, not from a digital standpoint and trying to translate that to TV”.

But Campanelli sees “programmatic TV” as meaning automation, data targeting and real-time optizisation of a schedule and dynamic ad insertion. But, on the latter, he says: “TV doesn’t work that way. We can’t have full programmatic until we have the ability to dynamically insert ads. That is a way off from a technology standpoint.”

Campanelli was interviewed by Beet.TV at the 4As’ (American Association of Advertising Agencies) Transformation 2015 event in Austin, Texas. Our coverage is sponsored by Videology.  Please find more coverage from the conference here.