MIAMI — The ability to target individual households with a medium that is traditionally more used to shouting at mass audiences is here and now. But it’s not universal – and it’s not yet living up to some of the wilder dreams of ad industry executives.

But “addressable TV” is about to go large, and it’s time to start spending to meet the opportunity, according to one man whose company is helping brands come aboard.

“Through this year, maybe a third of US households are addressable,” according to Neustar’s business development director Lock Dethero. “Next year, we could be to 60% of US households, given some new TV providers that are becoming available and some other smart TV sources.

“Now’s the time to do tests. If an advertiser has not applied their CRM data or tried addressable TV to figure out where it fits in to their overall mix, they should do a test, with at least one of these TV providers, with some reasonable spend.

“If they’ve been doing it for a while, it’s time to double down, to work with greater scale next year.

Recent estimates of the number of addressable US TV households count about 45m properties. We have heard from plenty of ad industry folk who appreciate the long, slow progress – but who now say the technology needs to gain a wider footprint.

Dethero’s Neustar is an ad-tech company offering data management platform, customer data intelligence, marketing analytics, activation, compliance solutions and fraud detection. “The point is scale,” he says.

But Dethero cautions against conflating addressable and programmatic TV. “A lot of people who are focused on digital advertising hear the word ‘programmatic’… we talk about it in television… we use it too much,” he says.

“People think, ‘I’ll start doing addressable TV when I know it’’s fully automated’. Well, it’s not going to be fully automated any time soon. But the people know what they’re doing.”

This interview was conducted at Beet Retreat 2016: The Transformation of Television Advertising, an executive retreat presented by Videology with AT&T AdWorks and the 605. Please find more videos from the event here.

This interview was conducted by Matter More Media CEO Tracey Scheppach.