CANNES – At the start of every episode of The Minimalists, one of the most popular podcasts in the world, listeners hear the hosts declare: “Advertisements suck.”
That is the kind of battle facing marketers, as a generation of mindful media consumers grows tired with interruption and commercialization.
But many in advertising recognize the concern. In this Cannes Lions video interview with Beet.TV, Matt Van Houten, SVP, Product, Operations & Business Development, DIRECTV, explains how he thinks it can be solved.
Seeking less disruption
“We know from the market research and data that viewers don’t dislike advertising,” Van Houten says.
“In fact, when you think about not only the streaming models that have picked up and the FAST models, you look at adjacent businesses like Spotify and others have made a very good business with engagement with advertising connected to it.
“When I think about innovation, I really think about ‘how do you provide a less disruptive experience?’ There’s been a model that’s existed for 60 years here, which is you watch an hour of content, you get 16 minutes of commercials.
“But now there’s an opportunity to monetize through advertising, through other means outside of that video feed, how do you provide experiences in the guide or within your platform?”
DIRECTV’s answers include formats like a “pause ad”, which, rather than interrupt viewing, show an ad while viewing is paused.
But, for Van Houten, it’s not just about format, it’s about frequency.
He is thankful addressable TV systems, which allow for targeting individual households and counting the number of ad exposures, can limit excess exposure.
“If you see an ad too many times, it has a negative effect,” he says. “If you see an ad too few times, you don’t recall it. So addressable allows you to have the right frequency.
“Addressable continues to provide a lot of value across the board … You’re continuing to see that magic number, 50, 60, 70 million homes. When you bring in the device manufacturers, that number is going to continue to grow.”