In the general quest for more advanced advertising resources, the overarching conversation is about “unification and interoperability” across the industry. Underneath is the day-to-day reality of competition among a variety of players with different business models.
“I think we’ve got a lot of bets in motion right now,” says Janet Balis, Global Advisory Leader, Media & Entertainment, at professional services provider EY.
“Some bets are bringing things together and other bets are creating more walled gardens. Right now it remains to be seen how it all plays out, but I think we’re going through this open and closed ecosystem debate,” Balis adds in this interview with Beet.TV.
She lauds the efforts of the OpenAP audience-targeting consortium as “a great step in that direction” of industry unification. Meanwhile, consumers are dabbling with a preponderance of OTT and streaming television choices while “the entire industry is playing catch-up mode” in figuring out how best to reach those viewers.
Referencing this year’s TV UpFront season, Balis sees a mix of legacy mindsets and behaviors and the reality of a shifting landscape. “I would imagine that next year’s UpFront will look quite different. I think right now it’s sort of got a foot in both worlds.”
Aside from media and technology companies, brand managers face major hurdles just trying to take advantage of audience segments in advanced TV. “Once we change all of those models, they have to change the entire infrastructure within their companies,” says Balis.
She sees a future in which marketing and customer experience, which today are often separate departments, will have to come together. “We have to build a smarter experience for consumers because that’s their human expectation of brands.”
Advertisers won’t be focusing just on the ROI of individual campaigns but “total lifetime value to get loyalty, retention and value from customers. Fundamentally, what that requires is embracing first-party data, enhancing it with second- and third-party data.”
Asked about her expectations for the upcoming Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity, Balis recognizes an underlying “tension” but reminds that, “Ultimately, Cannes Lions celebrates creativity and we have to remember that. It’s about the art of the craft and really celebrating the stories that are told.”