Comcast Corp. is putting all those recent business acquisitions to good use by ramping up its ad offerings. Two Monday announcements were made just as TV Upfront season begins and streaming platforms continually threaten ad revenue.
European satellite broadcaster Sky was acquired by Comcast for $40 billion last fall. Now, amid of the biggest TV ad-selling season of the year, Sky has teamed up with fellow Comcast subsidiary NBCUniversal to offer marketers a new toolset called AdSmart.
Adsmart is a merging of Sky’s advertising tools and NBCUniversal’s Audience Studio targeting solution. Both Sky and NBCUniversal advertisers can optimize linear spend against consumer segments that include 50 million households across the US and UK. Once the desired audience is chosen, advertisers can target them through the delivery of long-form content, digital ads and contextual alignment such as timing an ad with a relevant scene on a TV show.
“The world is getting smaller, and the opportunity for international marketers to make an impact with consumers is getting bigger,” said Linda Yaccarino, chairman of advertising and partnerships for NBCUniversal in a prepared statement. “The industry has demanded a global premium video offering, and now, one will finally exist.”
Meanwhile, TV advertising platform NCC Media—owned by Comcast, Cox Communication and Charter Communications—launched new digital buying capabilities. The “all-screen” advertising solution enables the launch of coordinated campaigns to the same audiences watching TV and browsing online.
NCC’s new offerings apply to all TV inventory including linear, VOD and addressable, as well as all digital formats including video, display, social, audio, out-of-home and mobile.
“Digital advertising is an important component of our clients’ marketing mix,” said Nicolle Pangis, CEO of NCC Media in a press release. “Today’s launch supports our strategy of expanding the efficient platform NCC built for the TV world to handle more of our clients’ media comprehensively. The new capabilities bring increased precision to brand marketing while greatly simplifying the way advertisers manage and monitor consumer narratives across the entire consumer journey.”
Comcast’s video ad tech company FreeWheel made its first upfront pitch to advertisers on March 13, touting new attribution features and the launch of FreeWheel Media and the first DSP integration for its new product suite with Adobe.
It comes to show that even giants like Comcast aren’t immune to the growing threat of OTT ad spend. EMarketer predicted that OTT video service users in the US would reach 203 million in 2019, compared to 297 million TV viewers. The market research firm just increased its ad revenue predictions for Hulu, saying it would surpass $2 billion between 2019 and 2020.