COLOGNE – There are cultural and regulatory differences, but the television industry in Europe and the United States realizes it needs more unity to meet advertisers’ expectations. And the buy-side is ready to go, even though more tools are needed to fully realize advanced TV, according to FreeWheel’s Dave Clark.

From his position as GM, EVP, Advanced Advertising, FreeWheel, Comcast Clark sees broad recognition that “there’s an opportunity to coalesce a platform, bring audiences together, share data and offer marketers a more unified look into inventory, unified planning,” he explains in this interview with Beet.TV at the annual DMEXCO conference. “Make it all easier. That’s a huge sea change.”

FreeWheel has been preparing for this change for about a decade, something that now fills the time of some 1,500 people. “We’re all focused on one thing: solving the very complex software and data issues around television, making it interoperable and driving economics for the programmers and for marketers.”

Media buyers understand the power of platforms because of the billions of dollars they routinely allocate to the likes of Facebook and Google in return for reach, targeting, unified pools of inventory and ease of use, according to Clark. They’ve been asking television to do the same.

“I think when television gets all of this together, the buy-side is ready to go. It’s a very big shift. You’re seeing the buy-side also invest in technology, which we’re excited about as well and we’re providing a number of solutions there to connect up to the supply,” Clark says.

Noting that the consumer “is the one piece of the puzzle that we don’t control,” he cites the continuing shift toward on-demand TV environments and lower ad loads. On the latter subject, there are limitations.

“We’ve also seen examples where the right ad loads and the right sort of targeting offsetting subscription fees or even with subscription fees can be very appealing to consumers. So there’s a long march in that direction.”

To properly manage inventory yield and the viewer experience is a balancing act that will require more time to achieve because “you need tools that the industry doesn’t have scaled yet, like addressable technology, better yield management tools, those kinds of things. All of which is coming on line very quickly and we at FreeWheel are powering most of that.”

This interview is part of a series titled Advertising Reimagined: The View from DMEXCO 2018, presented by Criteo. Please find more videos from the series here.