SANTA BARBARA, CA – Xandr’s partnership with Altice and Frontier to aggregate and sell their national addressable television inventory are just the first steps in Xandr’s pursuit of a national marketplace for premium, video-centric advertising on both the buy-side and sell-side.
Within the next 12 months, Xandr envisions having “aggregated significant amounts of supply. We will have enabled AT&T’s first-party data to be used on the front end of a buying tool to create segments and target. And then we’ll have a marketplace up and running that monetizes not only for AT&T’s owned-and-operated premium inventory, but for that of multiple publishers throughout the industry,” says Mike Welch, Xandr’s SVP of Strategy & Business Development. “Our vision all along was to create this marketplace for premium advertising centered on video.”
In this interview with Beet.TV at the Xandr Relevance Conference, Welch says the Altice and Frontier partnerships increase Xandr’s addressable TV footprint by 20% and explains how the acquisition of AppNexus will ramp up Xandr’s cross-screen targeting capabilities.
Reflecting on the conference itself and taking the pulse of conference attendees, Welch says it’s gratifying to see such widespread and supportive response. “The interesting thing for me and I think for all of us has been the feedback has been so positive. People are pulling for us,” says Welch “They’re saying the industry really needs this, we think you guys are going to bring a much needed alternative to some of the options that are out there.”
For cross-screen addressability, “This is where AppNexus really, really helps us and becomes a key part of our portfolio,” Welch adds. While AT&T via DirecTV has been a leader in addressable TV for six years, it was limited in reach since it was limited to television homes.
“You sort of plug and play AppNexus into what Xandr already has and you can now take a custom list or AT&T first-party data, build a segment from that and reach those same target audiences not only on the inventory on the television screen but the premium inventory that AppNexus has throughout their platform. It opens up another door for us to extend the reach of our addressable targeting capabilities.”
AT&T has never been supply constrained for addressable television. “In other words, we’ve been able to fulfill our campaigns and frequency tap our campaigns across the households that DirecTV could always reach. But what addressable really needs is extended scale of household reach and that’s what Altice and Frontier bring to us.”
Those providers will increase Xandr’s household reach by about 20% so that it can now reach 20 million households with an addressable ad in a live television stream “and it’s just a first step towards that aggregation that I think will ultimately drive dollars from digital back to television,” says Welch.
“We’ll probably start with a concept we call versioning. An advertiser would still buy a full unit that runs across the entire distribution that a particular cable network or broadcast network has, all TV households.”
However, in the portion of those households that are enabled with addressable technology, Xandr can deliver a different version of the ad.
“One household gets the Millennial version of the ad the other household might get a Baby Boomer version of the ad. So it makes the ad a little more relevant to them.”
This video is part of a series leading up to, and covering the Xandr Relevance Conference in Santa Barbara. For more videos from the series, please visit this page. This Beet.TV program is sponsored by Xandr, a unit of AT&T.