The newest technology to get TV people excited is “addressability”, the practice through which internet-connected TV devices allow for granular targeting of individual audiences.

That would move the world beyond the old system of selling ads against shows, to one in which advertisers buy actual audience members.

But getting there globally may not be straightforward – not only do TV ad sales systems around the world already differ, so do the technology platforms for lighting up addressability.

“Addressable advertising, that’s going to really have to vary by market,” says Viacom SVP global consumer insights Christian Kurz in this video interview with Ashley Swartz for Beet.TV.

“As one of our colleagues from Sweden was saying, ‘If I invest that amount of money in addressable advertising in Sweden, it’ll be cheaper to go and knock on everybody’s door in a country that has ten million people’.”

Kurz was hosting a meeting of EGTA, a trade body representing European broadcasters’ advertising sales units, as it took its members on a study trip to meet US peers in New York.

As a board member of the group, Kurz is exploring ways in which Viacom, which operates many channels in Europe, can benefit from and rationalise its addressability opportunity.

In the UK, for instance, satellite TV and telco operator Sky’s ad sales house sells ads for Viacom channels and is now facilitating addressable ad sales for Viacom, too.

Sky is aiming to introduce its addressable platform to its other European territories – principally, Germany, Italy and Ireland – but even this heavyweight doesn’t have total European footprint.

On one thing, though, Kurz says European and US practitioners agree: “TV is much more than linear.”

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