FORT LAUDERDALE — They say you can’t teach an old dog new tricks – but that’s exactly what is going to happen in media, as old-fashioned linear TV begins learning some of the ad targeting tactics digital advertisers have long enjoyed.

That change is happening because, as TVs or TV boxes get connected to the internet and enabled with software services, the way content is consumed and ads traded is, many think, about to look a lot more like digital video.

“I think there are elements of linear that could be applied to digital – maybe finding ways to put a specific advertiser in a specific spot as opposed to the dynamic, continual dynamic allocation of those ads,” according to James Rothwell, the agency and brand relations VP for FreeWheel, a video ad tech vendor, in this Beet.TV video interview.

“But I think it’s more likely to be the other way around … I think linear is more likely to look like digital … where we’re taking the best of digital in terms of data, in terms of automation, in terms of dynamic insertion and applying those to the linear world.”

The industry is now replete with ad tech vendors trying to enable TV, a decades-old, one-way medium, with some of the qualities of online ad buying, like refined targeting and solid campaign measurement.

Whilst the change has started, many also concede they are in it for the long haul.

“We’ve got a long way to go,” Rothwell acknowledges. “There’s still decades of practices and infrastructure. That means that we’re just not gong be applying the same digital practices across the board.”

This video was produced at the Beet.TV executive retreat presented by Videology with Adobe, AT&T AdWorks and Nielsen.

You can find more videos from the Beet Retreat on this page