Friday Fireside chat with iTV Dr. Rick Howe

Posted by Shelley Stansfield on May 18, 2020

Televisionation: May 15, 2020 Friday Fireside featuring Rick Howe, The iTV Doctor, sharing weekly conversations with prominent figures from the TV and video industry, discussing current developments throughout the media landscape. 


Rick gathers leaders in media, marketing and technology to filter the reality from the vaporware. Appearing on May 15th with Centriply's CEO, Scott Stansfield about how our data-enabled platform can transform linear TV into advanced advertising solutions for broadcast groups. (approx. 15 min.)

Continue here with some off-screen bonus questions about the future of Advanced Linear TV for media owners: 


Rick: I have recently seen an articles on broadcast sales teams that pointed out how transactional they are and how some are lacking resources that they need to be able to evolve to reach out and inform advertisers about how TV can help them keep their businesses going. Your team builds platforms for advanced TV advertising, what do you see coming out on the other side of the spring/summer of COVID 19? Can we restart together?

Scott:Whether its summer or fall—the key in the end is that we’re here to help win advertising budgets. Since we are an independent adtech developer --our platform specializes in advanced linear TV advertising We see tons of different types of TV inventory, and our conclusion is—that spot TV is a valuable component—not a supplement-- not  compliment-- a viable legitimate core component of advanced advertising. And our platforms don’t ask the station groups or cable systems to adopt any new ways of running ads.

It’s been working for years with an existing sales process that applies data to programming, audiences and location that gives it metrics that are compatible with other parts of ad campaigns. and by using our technology it opens the door to some new places that sales teams can’t currently get budgets from. That way sales people can pursue new revenue streams that are developing now and into the future.


RICK: That’s very different way of thinking for broadcast sales teams.

SCOTT: Right. We are very accustomed to working with the advanced TV groups at the larger agencies, so we can provide a shift in viewpoint for the TV ad sellers and give them insights into how they can fit into next generation campaigns.They want a no risk way for sales teams to present the inventory that the sales team is already presenting—so we are just applying metrics that make it fit into a new set of expectations for a different group of buyers and budgets. We see an important key to heading into the fall is “where can media owners find another spigot for RFPs? “ The most promising area we see is that national campaigns open up as something that can be filled with local inventory.


RICK: Wait, what? This may blow some heads off! How do you sell local into national campaigns? The scale is mind boggling.

SCOTT: Good question--ad sales is focused on revenue for their inventory—got it --Rightly so.  But the key to the current way of thinking for marketers/advertisers starts with what audience can I reach? And that answer is going to have to come back very very quickly—in the fall it’s going to be all about speed. TV has to provide answers as quickly as digital and programmatic.

To respond to client requests sales people need to do 4 things really well when they present to a client-- and this is where we come in. Our platform creates these capabilities so that TV fits with other media types.

Those four things are…

1. The stations can have the ability to inform clients of potential audience segment or group way beyond a standard demo, you can think of us as the “search engine for TV audiences”

2. They need a platform that’s flexible and matches media footprints + counts universes, This way everything is not DMA centric--no matter the area-zip code or trade radius or county—you can relate area back to the way the advertiser needs to see it—that way a national view is assembled and presented easily.

3.Then data is applied to inventory and pricing so that impression based buys fit into the overall campaigns instead of sitting on the side. That gives flexibility to the stations to find the combinations of daypart and cost without the make good process

4. And last thing that usually drives the deal when they get an RFP is—to quickly create large media proposals, you can’t have any issues with sorting 10-20 or 30,000 lines of inventory in ten minutes to fill the spec. I’ll repeat--- because our clients have seen it time and again that speed-speed-speed is crucial to getting the order


RICK: This sounds like a lot of tech build. Why would a station group that’s not a tech developer want to tackle this? 

SCOTT: Now to be clear --we’re not a CRM/sales process. That’s where a company like Matrix comes in-and we love those guys, our dashboard gets used once you get yourself in the door/well I guess on a zoom call these days. Once you are there, you can offer some insights into the locations and types of viewers or prospects that your programming reaches in a very granular fashion.

We’ve done the heavy lifting already by applying the data. So that they can respond with answers quickly. And more importantly ---the sales teams and the sales managers can be confident that their station can fulfill and perform by their proposals meeting the criteria of the buyers.


RICK: Are there other companies out there doing this?

SCOTT: At the moment there are groups starting to do this. But it’s still early-- so stations can have a competitive advantage by thinking this way. There’s tremendous effort going into the backend with ATSC3.0,  There seems to be a need still to support media sales teams in transition.


RICK: What are the most surprising things for media owners about this?

SCOTT: The biggest concept that may be difficult for the station group to understand is how flexible an impression-based RFP is.That flexibility gives them the option to swap inventory around, which means very limited makegoods. There is a much more limited reconciliation. It takes a while for this to sink in--- that this new generation of buyers expect impressions, it’s a very different expectation from the traditional spot buyers

The data can point to stronger Dayparts but still the station guarantees are on delivery of those impression numbers not a specific program line. If the viewers numbers are strong then they can use all different parts of your inventory to deliver the impression package you promised.


RICK: I would think that would be appealing to broadcasters

SCOTT: We’re seeing a significant paradigm shift that in some ways can be daunting. The mountain of data that’s required, the speed with which automation needs to happen and RFPs need to be responded to is very different. There’s a new language and creating different relationships. But, there are some remarkably attractive elements that are coming to the forefront. The advantage we see is the predictability of audiences and the scale of premium inventory.


RICK: That’s a bit of a head scratcher—can they do it now?

SCOTT: Centriply has always been unique—we’ve never been a low cost broker—we believe in the value of the media. Our process just adds information and support so that the publisher-here the TV stations can get money for it. Allowing the owner to control the inventory and give them new avenues to fulfill requests by a new generation of advanced TV buyers. They can focus on the right now, what’s next and beyond.

And most importantly it accelerates the media owners time to market because it’s already in the market and being used right now. Loading forward inventory, data and onboarding can be effective in 30 days. In just one month a station group can be creating advanced TV proposals without a significant capital expense.



Topics: Targeted TV, Technology, Media Planning, GEO Targeting, CRM Data can drive TV planning, Retail, driving sales, data insights, media, advertising, Audience Buying, Biz Dev, advanced TV advertising

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