As the market capabilities for addressable advertising continues to grow, it might best be considered a tactical balancing act whose ultimate utility resides in a perceived value exchange for individual brands. In the right situations, addressable can be “a fantastic tool,” says Adam Gerber of GroupM’s Essence agency.

Whether to employ addressable depends on a given marketer and its business objectives “and the degree to which they’re willing to connect their business strategy, their creative strategy and their targeting strategy and a measurement solution together,” Gerber explains in this interview with Beet.TV. “Just implementing addressable or targeting without thinking about those other pieces is probably not a good use of addressable media.”

Sounds pretty straightforward, but the fact remains that addressable isn’t for all brands,  “For mass advertisers who are trying to reach large, large slots of the population, there’s probably a lot less value to addressable media.”

The value exchange arises given the premium cost that accompanies addressable buys. In addition to the extra cost to reach particular audiences there is the loss of media in traditional buys “that you’re not going to receive”—media that is alternately considered “waste or bonus.”

This where the age-old question of reaching lots of people in the name of branding arises. “We know that brands are always needing to built their equity, not just among consumers who are in market for their product at that given time but for consumers who may enter the category over time or who might become a customer down the road,” says Gerber. “Addressability is a double-edged sword. The more you refine your targeting, the less you reach in terms of prospects or future customers and the less that you achieve in terms of branding against those segments.”

Gerber’s background includes sell-side positions at Brightcove and ABC and at the agencies MediaEdge and Mediavest. Last month, Gerber was promoted to his current position at Essence from VP of Investment for North America, as MediaPost reports.

Gerber advises upper-funnel marketers to look at addressable less from a targeting standpoint and more from an opportunity to manage frequency, deliver a more distributed campaign and to optimize reach.

“For brands that are lower-funnel, who are very conversion focused, who are trying to retarget existing customers or who have incredibly robust data sets around in market shoppers, addressability is a fantastic tool because it allows you to really thread the needle and reach groups of people who have the highest propensity to be purchasers of your product at that given time.

“It also delivers the opportunity for much more defined measurement and outcome-based analysis and analytics relative to the media you run.”

This video is part of the Beet.TV series titled Targeting Today’s TV Viewer sponsored by DISH Media Sales. It is published along with this DISH Media Sales Straightforward Guide in ADWEEK. For more videos from the series, please visit this page.