LAS VEGAS — Its pay-TV rival Sky may have been first to market to offer highly-targeted, addressable TV advertising capability – but, for UK cable company Virgin Media, moves including a partnership on the technology with Sky itself are paying dividends.

Now Virgin Media’s owner wants to replicate the impact across its global footprint.

In this video interview with Beet.TV, John Paul, Liberty Global’s MD, advanced ads and data, described the power of targeted TV advertising.

“(The relationship with) Sky has been very successful and the partnership there really just grows that scale in the United Kingdom,” he says. “We’re doing the same thing in other markets, like in Belgium. So, it’s really about accelerating that business.

“It opens television advertising up to the world. While the CPMs are higher, the total campaign costs can be lower, and because of the targeting ability, which opens up local opportunities, there is an entirely new set of advertisers, which is very exciting.

“I think that it’s not going to replace national brand-building advertising, but it’s this amazing new tool that allows broadcasters and sales houses to go into a brand with a much broader capability in being able to engage customers.”

Liberty Global’s footprint numbers 14 countries, many of which are rolling out addressable advertising opportunities for buyers. They are 12 in Europe and two in Latin America, including Belgian’s Telenet, Germany’s Unitymedia, eastern Europe’s UPC, Netherland’s Ziggo and, since 2014, UK cable operator Virgin Media.

Paul has previously told Beet.TV how the UK’s Virgin Media, one of the largest in Liberty Global’s portfolio, is now going to market with an addressable offering. But, like most of the stars in Liberty’s constellation, the company lets networks sell their own ads in to the inventory – Liberty Global rarely sells on their behalf.

Paul describes it as a “meta-aggregator” strategy, enabling broadcasters on Liberty Global-owned operators to sell their own ads.

“We’ve been able to move the needle with that in Belgium, United Kingdom, Ireland,” he adds. “Now it’s shifted from us trying to convince the broadcasters to them now knocking on our door saying, ‘We really want this. We want it for linear and we want you to help us monetize non-linear as well’.”

This video is part of Beet.TV coverage of CES 2019.   The series is sponsored by NBCUniversal.  For more coverage, please visit this page

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