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Today’s TV Top 10

TV biz in a basket for you. If you care about the TV business like we do and want to stay up on the latest but don’t have time to digest everything from everywhere– take advantage of our work: save this link and sign up for our weekly newsletter. Every day we’ll post the top ten (or more) articles on the business of TV disruption. And each day we’ll push what you missed to the bottom. So, you can stay on top of the news or at the end of the week have a sick batch of news to skim through. You’re welcome, we love you.

The Trump Bump expands beyond Fox: Late night shows sipping on Trump haterade (like The Late Show with Stephen Colbert) are seeing major increases in ad revenue and viewership. Video viewership goes hand in hand with artificial intelligence– IRIS.TV finds that by using personalized content recommendations, brands can keep viewers hooked to the screen.

Marketers would be so happy if digital and TV could work together– Nielsen and Facebook release a study to prove “the cross-media sales effect” that occurs when TV and social advertising are combined. Adobe launches its Advertising Cloud to manage ads across search, social and TV.

The upfronts are in full swing, with the major networks touting their own TV ratings and rethinking how they approach niche networks.

For the record, smart TVs do use audio recognition tools– they’re not listening to your conversations. The NFL updates its ad breaks, making them less often but longer. And yes, TV ad measurement is complicated.

YouTube’s Bid to Grab TV Dollars Imperiled by Advertiser Revolt
Reuters — Julia Love, Jessica Toonkel and Tim Baysinger

The decision by a handful of high-profile consumer brands to pull advertising from Google’s YouTube over offensive content could threaten the site’s long-term strategy of stealing ad dollars from television, analysts and ad industry professionals said Thursday.

As YouTube Faces Criticism Over Ad Placement, TV Networks Vow Not to Repeat Its Mistakes
Adweek — Marty Swant

Following the news about global brands pulling ads from YouTube, some advertisers believe that this could help redirect trust and ad dollars to television. Google has spent the past year comparing itself to TV both in terms of scale and effectiveness, and this is a reminder of the double edged sword that is digital advertising.

iQ Media Launches Metrics Solution For Events Sponsorships
MediaPost — Philip Rosenstein

iQ Media just announced a new sponsorship measurement solution, offering partners real-time data about how TV sponsorships affect overall fan engagement. This correlates real-time engagement data with purchases, mobile activation and social media actions.

PlayStation Vue and MLB Network Play Ball
Broadcasting & Cable — Jeff Baumgartner

PlayStation Vue, Sony’s OTT TV service, said it launched MLB Network this week in time for last night’s World Baseball Classic semifinal game between the U.S. and Japan.

Reality Check: Marketers Can Hear Your TV — But Not How You Might Think
Advertising Age — Kate Kaye

For years, automated content recognition technology has been recognizing audio that appears during particular time slots and programs, and has generated data used by TV advertisers. But while TV ad measurement firms can track the acoustic path, they cannot actually listen to conversations around the TV.

In a Bid to Pick Up the Pace, the NFL Will Kill Off Everyone’s Least-Favorite Ad Break
Advertising Age — Anthony Crupi

The NFL is going to get rid of when a post-scoring kickoff is sandwiched between two ad breaks. The NFL is also thinking about reducing the number of commercial breaks from the standard five per quarter to four, while retaining the usual spot load. An actual reduction in ad inventory was never really in the cards, given the huge sums the networks pay for the privilege of carrying NFL games. Under the current rights package, the league’s three broadcast partners (CBS, NBC and Fox) and ESPN will fork over a combined $39.6 billion in exchange for access to TV’s last sure-fire reach vehicle.

10 Takeaways on Entertainment Marketing From Variety’s Massive Summit
Variety — Dave McNary + Will Thorne

Measuring TV viewership accurately remains enormously complicated. “People underestimate the difficulty of measurement; there are maybe 10 companies that do something seriously,” said Sean Muller, CEO of iSpot.tv.

Politics Might Be Everywhere, but Probably Not in the TV Upfronts
Advertising Age — Jeanine Poggi

The election cycle has been credited with rescuing a cable news business. And while cable news programming, along with late-night comedy, attracts advertisers’ attention, overall politics aren’t changing where brands advertise. This adds some much needed gross ratings points to a marketplace that in recent years has been starved for commercial inventory. But not all advertisers want to be in news programming.

Analyst: Digital Ad Woes Could Could Help TV Marginally
Broadcasting & Cable — Jon Lafayette

Looking at the next four years, Michael Nathanson of MoffettNathanson Research sees TV earning only 16% of incremental ad spending and its share of overall spending declining to about 35% from 38% in 2016.

Upfronts 2017: Cable Nets Remind Advertisers TV Is About More Than Data
Advertising Age — Jeanine Poggi

Despite the talk about data’s role in the TV upfronts becoming more pronounced, Scripps Networks and A+E Networks focus more on storytelling than TV data. While both A&E Networks and Scripps Networks have been utilizing data as part of their deals with advertisers, neither have made as big of a priority as some of their counterparts.

Sling TV Is Partnering With Adobe for Programmatic Advertising
Adweek — Marty Swant

Sling TV is getting into programmatic advertising, partnering with Adobe’s newly unveiled Advertising Cloud to let brands bid in real time on livestreaming and video on demand via a private marketplace. The programmatic advertising capability could put Sling in competition not just with major networks, but also with tech companies like Twitter, which has been betting on live video for the platform. Advertisers will also be able to target audiences on a cross-channel basis using first- and third-party data such as demographics, network and genre. Sling is in talks with Nielsen and comScore for third-party measurement.

comScore Says Growth of Mobile Video Maturing
Broadcasting & Cable — Jon Lafayette

According to comScore’s Cross-Platform Future in Focus 2017, live TV still accounts for 84% of all viewing, with 14.9% of viewing occurring on DVRs and 1.1% with video on demand. In primetime, live viewing represents 74.7% percent of the total, with 24.6% being delayed viewing on DVRs and 0.8% VOD.

TV Viewing is Soaring on Internet Connected Devices
Media Life Magazine — Toni Fitzgerald

According to Nielsen usage in February, English-language broadcast and ad-supported cable viewing dropped 10.3% and commercial impressions dropped 7.2% among adults 18-49. The trend of declining TV viewership is prevalent, especially among younger viewers. But there is one area of TV that’s rising: viewing via connected devices like Roku and Apple TV rose by 56% year over year.

TV Viewers React to March Madness + Dancing With The Stars
The Wrap

The most emotionally-reacted to program on TV this week was one of the NCAA Basketball Tournament games: the matchup in which South Carolina upset Duke generated 152,837 Emotional Reactions (ERs), according to Canvs. Excluding sports, the most emotionally-reacted to show (with 80,231 ERs) was the season 24 premiere of “Dancing with the Stars” on ABC.

A+E Networks Returns to the Upfronts
Adweek — Jason Lynch

A+E will return to the Upfronts this year, but will save advertising discussions for individual meetings, touting the capabilities of A+E Precision, the company’s audience targeting tool. A+E did a “handful” of linear and digital deals on the platform last upfront, and is looking to do a dozen more this upfront. Regarding the new OpenAP audience targeting platform that Turner, Viacom and Fox are launching as an industry standard, A+E says they’re open to whatever works for the business.

Facebook’s New Ad Formats Inch Closer to TV Commercials
Recode — Kurt Wagner

Facebook’s new ad format, called Collections, will let marketers attach multiple product images to a video ad in News Feed. Facebook is giving marketers a TV-commercial-style ad that also lets them highlight specific products and — hopefully for Facebook and its advertisers — get people to buy right then and there.

TV Touts New Measures for 2017 Upfront While Madison Ave. Suffers Sticker Shock
Variety — Brian Steinberg

CBS recently unveiled “total content ratings” that measure not only linear TV watching but also time-shifted viewing by DVR playback and via video-on-demand. Viacom, 21st Century Fox’s Fox Networks Group, and Time Warner’s Turner are standing behind a new system crafted with tech consultant Accenture that allows for ad purchases based on “big data” measurements of narrower consumer groups. NBCUniversal says it hopes to sell $1 billion of its upfront inventory for similar big-data-based ads that can be aimed at specific audiences.

Fox Television Stations and Nielsen Sign Long-Term Agreement
Adweek — Chris Ariens

Fox Television Stations has signed a new long-term agreement with Nielsen for audience measurement services for all of the group’s 28 stations. “The investments that Nielsen is making to Local TV are part of its overall strategy to deliver all-electronic measurement,” the two said in a joint press release.

Nielsen Debuts Overnight Screening For New Product Ideas
MediaPost — Karlene Lukovitz

Nielsen is launching its latest new product concept testing iteration today. Called Quick Screen, the tool promises to provide fast-moving consumer goods manufacturers (FMCG) with a reliable, overnight consumer read on which ideas have greater probabilities of in-market success.

Snapchat Is Proving Its Street Cred With TV Advertisers
Business Insider — Alex Heath

Snapchat is touting its ability to put people in front of their TVs. Snapchat has stepped up efforts to measure whether users intend to watch a TV show that’s been advertised on the app, as well as whether those users actually ended up watching the show. NBC saw a 122% increase in self-reported viewing of its “Hairspray” TV musical a few months ago because of its campaign on Snapchat.

TV’s Dead Zone: How the Cable Sector Is Killing Off Struggling Networks
Variety — Cynthia Littleton + Daniel Holloway

“I think, over time, you’re going to have more and more linear networks go by the wayside,” says Coleman Breland, distribution president for Turner Broadcasting. “I think that’s actually necessary. So many of these networks do less than 100,000 viewers in total-day average; there just aren’t enough eyeballs to support them. But they’re taking money out of the ecosystem.” At stake for the largest cable programmers is an estimated 10%-20% of the roughly $40 billion in domestic affiliate fees collected from distributors, known as MVPDs. With pay-TV bundles going on a diet, programmers are facing a dilemma: Let marginal channels die a slow death from steady subscriber losses, or pull the plug sooner rather than later. Either way, earnings from affiliate fees will take a hit.

Hulu’s TV Ad Impressions: Not About Individual Shows, But Total Audiences
MediaPost — Wayne Friedman

Hulu is now selling advertising based on audience segments, not on shows. 75% of Hulu viewing now comes from the big living-room TV screens — up from around 40% a couple of years ago.

Can Hulu Reprogram The Way We Watch TV?
Fast Company — Nicole Laporte

The goal is to deliver, for less than half the price of cable, the best of live television with the on-demand functionality of a streaming platform—along with features that neither offering has ever seen before.

Why A&E Networks Wants to Operate More Like a Publisher
Advertising Age — Jeanine Poggi

During this year’s upfront, A&E Networks wants advertisers to view the company less as a collection of TV businesses and more as storytellers. There has been an internal refocus on a clear target audience so the networks become voices in the broader conversation. Their thematic content approach imitates digital publishing channels.

How Hulu Is Using Original Content to Gain Subscribers
Fast Company — Nicole Laporte

Hulu hopes its original content push will help it appeal in different ways to different audiences. Hulu is competing against other skinny bundles like Dish Networks’ Sling TV (the cheapest bundle), DirecTV Now (more expensive but offers the most complete lineup of channels), Sony PlayStation Vue (allows for simultaneous streams).

American Mirror: A Crash Course in Trash TV
The Outline — Jeff Ihaza

Advertisers are well aware of daytime TV viewers’ financial states. Commercial breaks are filled with ads for car insurance, personal injury attorneys, title loan companies, and for-profit universities, all appealing to viewers’ financial insecurity. Many ads falsely promise the opportunity to completely turn one’s life around. Herbalife famously targets Latinos during popular telenovelas. DeVry University, a for-profit university that was sued by the FTC in 2014 for false advertising, often runs commercials during daytime shows with exaggerated claims of career success for graduates.

Small Cable Channels You Pay for—but Don’t Watch—Are Dying
Wall Street Journal — Shalini Ramachandran + Keach Hagey

The engorged cable-TV bundle is being forced to slim down. But don’t expect your bill to decrease as networks go away.

Vice Will Distribute Short-Form Scripted Content Across Digital Channels From blackpills Studio
Adweek — Sami Main

“This partnership has allowed us to create compelling content that can rival top tier episodic TV,” said Benski, “and we’re excited to finally share our digital-first vision with audiences worldwide with our new partner blackpills—via our exclusive premiere on Vice.” The partnership was brokered by Benski and will incorporate original pieces of content from both blackpills and Pulse Films, which will be distributed on Vice’s digital properties.

Nielsen Catalina And Facebook Are Out To Prove Digital And TV Work Better Together
AdExchanger — Allison Schiff

NCS tracks what Chief Research Officer Leslie Wood calls “the cross-media sales effect” using a blend of in-store purchase data collected by Nielsen Catalina from roughly 90 million households across the US, set-top box data and information from Nielsen’s 100,000-person consumer shopping panel.

Adobe Launches its Advertising Cloud to Manage Ads Across Search, Social and TV
TechCrunch — Ryan Lawler

Today Adobe is launching the Adobe Advertising Cloud, which will enable advertisers to buy Google, Facebook, Twitter, Snap video ads and linear TV all at once. Adobe manages more than $3.5 billion in ad spend a year and believes there’s a huge opportunity ahead, particularly in the addition of TV advertising.

Twitter Is Opening Up Its Live Video Platform
Business Insider — Alex Heath

Twitter just announced the ability for broadcasters to use professional cameras and editing software to stream live video directly to the platform, opening up its Professional Periscope Platform. Some of its partners, such as Brandlive, may be able to help monetizing video streams. “This move by Twitter makes live video even more attractive to the world’s best brands,” Brandlive CEO Fritz Brumder said in a statement to Business Insider.

N.C.A.A. Tournament Ads Work Around Glaring Absence: Players
New York Times — Sapna Maheshwari

Companies spend more than $1 billion on television ads tied to the N.C.A.A. tournament, plus millions more on online marketing and ads in and around the arenas where games are played. But the N.C.A.A. strictly prohibits the names or likenesses of the college athletes from being used in advertising for products or services. Instead, LG Electronics USA is airing commercials that show college mascots using its refrigerators and washing machines, while a spot from Buffalo Wild Wings includes an actor portraying a player in a Louisville uniform.

It’s Been A Wild Ride To The Sweet 16, But What Was THE Craziest March Madness Moment So Far?
TVREV — Mike Gasbara

TV[R]EV teamed up with Canvs, the emotion analytics company, to see what was the craziest March Madness game so far. And the winner is South Carolina versus Duke. In the closing moments of this game, crazy spiked, accounting for 20.7% of Emotional Reactions, with more than 740 emotionally charged comments expressing crazy pouring in per minute (during a five-minute span). Traditionally, sporting events are a solid bet for advertisers’ marketing budget. Unless the game is a total blowout, viewers are typically glued to the tube for the entirety of the program. For example, the average view rate (AVR) for March Madness ads thus far is 88.36%, according to iSpot.tv.

Spanish-Language TV Advertising ROI Outperforms English
MediaPost — Jack Loechner

Nielsen estimates that about 83% of U.S. adults in Hispanic TV households (persons 18+) speak some level of Spanish in the home, with 27% speaking only Spanish and 57% speaking both languages in the home. This is a huge opportunity for marketers: 54% of Spanish-language TV campaigns perform in line with or ahead of English-language campaigns.

Study: Viewability Matters, But Likeability Matters Even More in Online Video
Advertising Age — Jack Neff

According to a new study of Kellogg Brands, there is a  strong correlation of both longer view times and likeability to sales, suggests people who liked the ads watched longer and bought more. Viewers who watched for two to four seconds — just over the two-second minimum MRC threshold – had a sales-lift index at 82.

Scripps Study: Ad Engagement Higher With Lifestyle Shows
Broadcasting & Cable — Jon Lafayette

Conducted by Nielsen, the Scripps Environment and Advertiser Impact Study, found that commercials running in lifestyle programming scored 22% higher on the traditional measure of advertising engagement, including interest in products, attention to brands, intent to seek information and purchase intent.

Trump Jokes Are Paying Off for Late-Night Shows, With Soaring Ratings and Ad Revenue
Adweek — Jason Lynch

Since Trump took office, the liberal-leaning late-night talk shows are seeing big ratings gains—including The Late Show with Stephen Colbert, Full Frontal with Samantha Bee and The Daily Show with Trevor Noah—and an accompanying increase in scatter market ad revenue. Leading the charge is Colbert, whose program has been the No. 1 show in late night for six consecutive weeks, a 23% year-over-year increase in total viewers.

AI and Video Marketing: It’s Not Just for the Major Brands
OnlineVideo.net — Bree Brouwer

IRIS.TV, a video automation and programming platform, uses AI to serve personalized, relevant videos and ads to audiences. IRIS.TV’s clients know the power of AI– they typically see a 70% increase in video views, with 10 biggest clients saw an average 400 percent increase in video views in 2016. “AI can provide a level of insight not available with general meta and share data, and removes a lot of the guesswork that goes into video targeting,” explains Fritz Brumder, CEO and co-founder of live streaming platform Brandlive. “AI technology allows marketers to create multiple variations of videos by use cases, audience, message, product, and performance.

New Study Says Sitcoms Give TV Advertisers the Best Return on Their Investment
Adweek — Jason Lynch

By 2025, millennials will represent the bulk of the 18-49 demographic, said Poltrack. “This is where the action is going to be in our economy. This is going to drive our economy for the next 10 years.” And as millennials age, buy homes and have kids, said Poltrack, they will begin to watch more television and more broadcast TV.

MediaRadar Launches TV Share of Market Report
Broadcasting & Cable — Jon Lafayette

MediaRadar, which compiles information about ad spending, is debuting its TV Share of Market Report– this new capability will let network sales and research executives to be able to track and compare total ad spend by network, as well as track and compare commercial minutes by advertiser and by program, daypart, genre, and product categories..

How ‘Empire’ Became The Most Valuable Show On Broadcast TV
Forbes — Madeline Berg

Empire’s ratings success and accolades have translated to big bucks for Fox. According to iSpot.tv, first runs and reruns of the show brought in $125.5 million in ad revenue in 2016 and $124.5 million in 2015. Other than sports programming, the show made more money for its network last year than did any other series, including advertiser favorites American Idol and The Big Bang Theory.

With YouTube TV In The Mix, We Need Faster, More Precise TV Measurement
AdExchanger — Bill Wise

With the announcement of services like YouTube TV, the volume of IP-delivered TV continues to swell, while the demand for more precise TV measurement grows. TV measurement typically isn’t delivered frequently or fast enough for the pace of a fragmented digital market.

Addressable Vs Programmatic Television
Adotas — Brian Katz

Programmatic is a more automated way of buying television. Currently, programmatic does not offer the HH level targeting and ad serving that addressable does, which is why Eyeview is more focused on what addressable offers to marketers and its synergies with our digital and social solutions.

ANA Aims to Standardize Gender Equality in Ads
Advertising Age — Jack Neff

In a bid to strengthen its #SeeHer gender-equality push, the Association of National Advertisers is making the ad-scoring system behind it available for any copy-testing service, meaning it could become a standard module in evaluating ads. The ANA’s Alliance for Family Entertainment has completed testing the 200 most-watched TV shows using its Gender Equality Measure, with an eye toward providing those ratings to advertisers that want to align their gender-conscious ads with like-minded TV buys.