Traditional media folk often look enviously at the likes of Google, Facebook and Amazon – massive tech companies they see as disrupting and cannibalizing their advertising income.

Even when it comes to marketing their own products and services, it  can seem like the giants have their own platforms through which to reach consumers.

In fact, what is transpiring is a massive influx of ad spending from digital majors in traditional media.

That is according to Laura Baehr, marketing VP from Think TV, Canada’s industry body advocating the advertising effectiveness of TV channels.

In this video interview with Beet.TV, Baehr has a message that may turn the frown upside-down on the face of traditional media.

“The digital players are our best case studies,” she says. “If Google thought they could launch their new phone on YouTube alone, that’s exactly what they would they do.

“But they don’t. They launch it on television. Facebook is on television. In Canada, online businesses have doubled their spend on TV over the past five years. So we’re seeing tremendous growth in areas from the Googles and the Amazons of the world to direct-to-consumer, Expedia, Wayfair. We’re seeing all of those companies come into television.”

That analysis tallies with a report recently produced by the Video Advertising Bureau. It examined a group of 80 “digital disruptors” – amongst them, Airbnb, Uber and Wayfair –  which it says have massively increased their US TV ad spend, now totalling $2.6 billion, in a bid to build their consumer brands.

Analyst estimates – like these from eMarketer (growth) and WARC (decline) – for the Canadian TV market disagree on the outlook for advertising spend, but net out to show no big swing.

For Baehr, TV still has a big advantage over online ad formats.

“Digital is it can be very targeted and it can be very great when you’re searching things when you’re already in a category,” she says. “But then you hit a point where you just can’t grow enough. You just can’t get that reach you need and that’s when companies just come and they explode when they get on television.”

This interview was conducted at the EGTA New York meetings hosted by Viacom.   EGTA, the Brussels-based trade association of international television companies, is the sponsor of this Beet.TV series. For more videos, please visit this page

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