The cable industry reaps about $5 billion of the total $70 billion TV advertising marketplace. They’d love a bigger share, but haven’t figured out how to do it.
One idea: Using the valuable information from their subscribers’ set-top boxes to create targeted, more effective TV ads. The WSJ says Comcast (CMCSA) completed 16-month trial with Publicis’ media firm Starcom that found … households targeted with relevant ads were a third less likely to change the channel. No data here on whether those ads are less-likely skipped on DVRs, but one could presume skipping rates went down, too.
In the trial, Comcast used detailed household data from Experian, then targeted ads with set-top technology from OpenTV. Homes could be targeted based on, say, whether they own a pet or are likely in the market for a car. The study was conducted in 8,000 homes in Alabama; later this year Comcast is going to to expand the trial to 100,000 homes in Baltimore.
This is the latest effort by the cable industry to turn their access to set-top data, and ability to target homes, into higher ad rates. Also on tap: “Project Canoe,” a joint bid led by Comcast and Time Warner Cable to create a national cable platform for ads.
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