What has advanced TV’s journey been to this point and where is it headed? A panel of industry leaders moderated by Forrester principal analyst Jim Nail explored both of these questions. Despite industry predictions that advanced TV would have long ago hit its inflection point, it has still yet to truly peak.

“There’s a lot of brands that are still getting their feet under them in terms of audiences and digital,” says Christine Grammier, managing director of LiveRamp, during the panel at the Beet Retreat in New York City hosted by Publicis Media.

Much of the challenge comes from gathering the proper data sets to be able to communicate trends to clients that reflect similar successes in traditional TV models.

“Trying to use the same data on the planning side and the measurement side is hard still,” says Brian Wallach, senior vice president and CRO of advanced TV at FreeWheel. “So even though we want to do this advanced targeting and we want to find the right people that are in the market for products and services, it’s still complicated, but we’re definitely making progress.”

While we may still be awaiting a full buy-in on advanced TV models across the industry, the reach of television continues to serve a crucial purpose for advertisers, which cannot be overlooked.

“We talk a lot about television and video and its ability now to be more targeted and more personalized,” says Neil Vendetti, president of investment at Zenith. “But I think if you take a step back, the vast majority of our clients still buy TV for largely the same reason they always have, which is maximizing reach. It’s still unparalleled in the marketplace in terms of its ability to do that.”

The reach itself, however, is a metric that needs to be reimagined in order to be fully maximized.

“If we’re going to transact on reach, it needs to be across any number of video touchpoints that a consumer would reasonably consider as television-esque,” says Vendetti. “It needs to be the same kind of an experience from an advertising and content standpoint so that we can reasonably expect the same level of effectiveness.”

All panelists are in agreement that now, more than ever, capitalizing on reach means first gaining a very specific and polished idea of what your target audience looks like.

“We really try to start the conversation with audience,” says Grammier. “And then your view on what does reaching them with a premium video impression really mean kind of pivots a little bit.”

This video was produced at the Beet Retreat leadership event hosted Publicis Media in New York. The event and video series is sponsored by FreeWheel and LiveRamp. For more videos from the event, please visit this page