Comcast Technology Solutions and FreeWheel bring programmatic ads to STB VOD

Tuesday, June 9th, 2020
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Comcast Technology Solutions and FreeWheel Partner to Bring Programmatic Advertising to the On-Demand Living Room

  • New Solution Enables Content Owners and Distributors to Sell Set-Top-Box (STB) Video-On-Demand (VOD) Inventory Programmatically
  • Opens New Demand Channels for STB VOD, Allows More Unified Buying Across All Premium Video

DENVER & NEW YORK — Today, Comcast Technology Solutions, a division of Comcast Cable that provides media and entertainment technology to advertisers, agencies and content providers, and FreeWheel, a Comcast Company providing global technology solutions for the future of television advertising, announced a new industry solution that will bring programmatic capabilities to premium STB VOD video inventory.

The solution allows both content owners and distributors to offer advertisers access to STB VOD content, unifying it with other inventory sold programmatically across connected TV and digital video channels. The new innovation combines the ad targeting capabilities of FreeWheel’s ad decision engine with the ad creative distribution capabilities of Comcast Technology Solutions’ Ad Store, providing real-time, broadcast quality creative conditioning and distribution to all STB VOD MVPD end points.

Creative conditioning of advertisers’ video creative requires special considerations in the STB VOD advertising environment, requirements which to date have hindered the ability to offer this premium inventory programmatically. This new solution solves for these complexities with the speed required for automated bidding within FreeWheel’s unified auction structure.

“Video-on-demand content has skyrocketed in importance in terms of video viewership, as consumers flock to the engaged, big-screen viewing environment in their own living rooms. However, until today, it has not been possible to effectively monetize this content in the same programmatic fashion as other video inventory,” said Richard Nunn, Vice President and General Manager of Advertiser Solutions at Comcast Technology Solutions. “By enabling unified programmatic auctions and seamless distribution of ad assets across all inventories including STB VOD, we are helping programmers and distributors open up new opportunities for advertisers.”

Through this solution, FreeWheel is one of the first technology providers to offer targeted, STB VOD inventory to agencies and advertisers via programmatic demand-side platforms.

“Programmatic advertising is becoming a more important part of our premium video buying strategies,” said Jason Kanefsky, Chief Investment Officer, Havas Media. “Advancements that allow us to get greater scale, more consistent targeting and a unified view of the total viewing audience are needed. As viewers continue to shift their consumption across platforms, in particular younger demographics, extending reach in new ways is critical. The addition of STB VOD inventory to our programmatic arsenal will be an important step in this direction.”

“Our key goal is to ensure buyers and sellers can seamlessly transact across all content types and allow for our robust data and decisioning capabilities to work wherever viewers are watching premium video. Working with Comcast Technology Solutions to bring Set-Top Box VOD into the mix is an enormous step forward,” said Dave Clark, General Manager, FreeWheel. “Allowing programmatic, marketplace access to this growing viewership segment will open new sources of growth to our supply-side clients, and just as importantly, will allow advertisers to tap into this premium, living room quality content as part of their unified video strategy.”