FreeWheel addressable technology unifies linear TV and digital video advertising

Wednesday, April 14th, 2021
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FreeWheel Releases Next Generation, Cross-Platform Addressable Technology to Unify Linear TV and Digital Video Advertising

  • New technology allows sellers to dynamically “split” impressions from a single linear TV spot in real time across multiple advertisers, improving efficiency and opening up scale for advertisers
  • Comcast and Charter Communications currently piloting tech to deliver addressable, cross-platform, deduplicated reach to advertisers across linear TV and digital

NEW YORK — Today, FreeWheel, a Comcast Company, announced a significant milestone in digital and linear TV convergence: the rollout of a new technology that allows sellers to deliver video advertising, using aggregated and de-identified data, on an addressable basis across platforms from a central decisioning platform. Through this solution, a single linear TV advertising avail can be utilized by different advertisers, a form of advertising known as audience addressable. The technology is currently being piloted by Comcast and Charter Communications to enable cross-platform, deduplicated addressable advertising.

FreeWheel’s audience addressable technology is an important innovation for both FreeWheel and the industry as a whole. This release marks the first time a company has been able to offer true, multiplatform, addressable audience targeting across all screens, including linear TV, using FreeWheel technology.

“At FreeWheel, we’re dedicated to making the TV buying process simpler, and in many cases, that means making it more like buying digital,” said Dave Clark, General Manager, FreeWheel. “This is a true addressable linear solution that makes TV advertising more targetable and more measurable, while simultaneously opening up the scale of available addressable impressions. This capability will change the way both sellers and buyers approach integrated TV and video advertising.”

FreeWheel’s new technology allows advertisers to execute audience-level addressable targeting on a traditional linear (QAM) set-top box using real-time ad decisioning and consistent with privacy obligations, opening up a broader range of available impressions. Previously, addressable TV campaigns would only use a portion of targeted impressions from a given ad avail; the remainder would generally be used for promotional spots, PSAs, or direct response advertising. Or, in some cases, if the unused impressions fit the desired criteria, they could be scheduled for another advertiser. With this new audience addressable solution, the addressable campaign is executed from one platform with a single unified decisioning engine—FreeWheel’s MRM platform—that can make the most informed ad decision for an advertiser’s business, taking into account yield and business rules.

“This new solution delivers addressable, cross-platform campaigns on both digital and linear screens, fulfilling true video unification,” said David Kline, Executive Vice President at Charter Communications, and President of Spectrum Reach. “It’s what TV buyers and sellers alike have been striving for over the past several years, and now it’s here.”

For inventory owners like Comcast and Charter, FreeWheel’s addressable technology provides the ability to deliver deduplicated reach to advertisers and opens up additional impressions for possible use in other addressable campaigns, a benefit when targeting specific audience segments. For advertisers, this improves their ability to reach more customized audiences and measure overall performance results for their cross-platform TV and video campaigns.

“This solution will enhance our ability to deliver target audiences in a more unified fashion across linear and streaming TV,” said James Rooke, General Manager, Effectv. “We know that addressability is an important tactic in terms of being able to deliver more efficient incremental reach and improved overall campaign performance. We look forward to now scaling this capability as part of our broader focus on deploying audience-based, multi-screen marketing solutions for our clients.”

While Comcast and Charter are the first inventory owners to offer this technology to their buyers, it will be available to other MVPDs later this year.