Software tools that transformed the way brands buy digital advertising are coming to television as marketers and agencies seek to reach the growing audience for video streaming. FreeWheel, Comcast’s advertising technology platform, this year is bringing these programmatic tools to the upfronts as billions of dollars are transacted.

“We have a lot of growth happening in the industry, where the eyeballs are shifting,” Michelle Zyglis, vice president of product management, TV platform at Comcast’s FreeWheel, said in this interview with Lisa Granatstein, editorial director of Beet.TV. “The ad spending is following. It gives us a great opportunity to monetize those eyeballs in a much better way using the power of programmatic.”

Amid this shift in spending toward connected television, advertisers, media companies and ad-tech platforms are grappling with the challenges that come with new workflows. Television advertising deals are transitioning from insertion-order contracts to automated transactions that offer greater efficiency and data-driven audience targeting.

US TV and CTV Ad Spending

“There’s a lot of ad-tech teams trying to figure out: how do we expand? How do we turn on those programmatic pipes? It seems complex,” Zyglis said. “We, the ad industry, need to help facilitate that.”

FreeWheel’s Allocation Module gives advertisers a holistic view of their spending against upfront commitments. It also offers demand side platforms a better way to tell if they’re bidding enough, in real time, to meet the ad-spend commitments of their clientele.

The company also is working to bring more advertising inventories for live programming, such as sporting events that draw mass audiences.

“We are focused at FreeWheel on bringing that live premium supply to the market, working on: how do we stand up live sports so that we stand it up in a way that we can scale properly?” Zyglis said. “We can make it available in biddable market. We can monetize it. We can get rid of that waste that exists today.”

You’re watching Beet.TV’s coverage of Programmatic Activation Summit 2024, presented by FreeWheel. For more videos from this series, please visit this page.