CANNES – Two highlights at the 2018 Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity for true[X] President Pooja Midha are some “very promising conversations” about the company’s engagement ad formats and positive response to measuring brand lift. “People really appreciate that the engagement ad format, which is the core of our business, has the power and flexibility to really answer a broad range of marketer KPI’s,” Midha says in this interview with Beet.TV.

“Chances are, we’ve probably done some work for someone with a similar objective or we’re actually working with an ad studio that has the creativity, the flexibility and the prowess to help them think through how we can do that in our ad format.”

Just after the Cannes Festival concluded, true[X] said that it has reached a one-year deal with GroupM digital agency Essence to develop and test new approaches for connected TV advertising. As Advertising Age reports, the aim is to develop consumer-friendly and compelling brand experiences that can scale to connected-TV offerings like Roku and Apple TV. In addition, Essence will be the first agency to access engagement ads programmatically.

At Cannes, true[X]’s focus on brand lift as a measure of success “is really resonating here,” says Midha. “There’s no better personal primetime than the OTT viewing we see happening across our publisher partners.”

Asked to comment on developments in OTT measurement, Midha says, “It’s unfortunate that it’s a little bit nascent because it’s such an incredible viewing environment. There’s a lack of standardization in those platforms. Each one is a little bit different, which makes rolling measurement across very difficult. It’s not something that’s happened quickly.”

True[X] has already built a measurement tool that can live in all OTT environments called Uplift, which measures brand lift.

“Because if you want to create a brand, you need emotion. That’s the difference between a brand and a product. The first thing you need to do that is you need to have attention, which is what our format is about, and once you have attention you want to make sure you’re lifting your brand and you’re having impact. We’re trying to follow the whole thread.”

This video is from a series of videos and sessions produced in partnership with FreeWheel at Cannes 2018 as part of the FreeWheel Forum on the Future of Television. You can find more videos from this series here.