Adobe Primetime adds TV Media Management Platform

The addition moves Primetime beyond helping TV program makers get on devices, to forecasting ad inventory across all screens and by audiences.

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Adobe Primetime took a major evolutionary step today toward the programmatic- and audience-based future of ads on multi-screen television, with the launch of its new TV Media Management (TVMM) platform.

The new platform allows major TV program suppliers, like national networks or cable providers, to plan and forecast the availability of multi-screen inventory by specific audiences. This is Adobe’s first major step to support forecasting/planning for ads in TV programming, on whatever platform.

In this first release, Director of Product Marketing Campbell Foster told me, the focus is entirely on ads in TV programs that are delivered via Internet Protocol (IP), such as Roku, Apple TV, or TV-on-Web sites like National Geographic Online.

He said that the second release, expected within the next year or so, will include addressable linear TV. Currently, addressable TV — where ads can be directed at a specific TV set, toward a specific household’s anonymized profile — constitute only a small percentage of the total TV set population.

TVMM separates “execution from intelligence,” Foster said, handling ad space availability but not placing the ad on the page. The buyer can see the availability, see the rates, and schedule the space, but then booking is handled in their regular ad server.

The users of this new platform, Foster said, are parent media companies like NBC, not media sellers, and it is focused on direct sales between inventory owner and advertiser.

When addressable TV has a significant inventory and is included, TVMM will be allow major program producers to plan and schedule their ad inventory across all platforms, by audiences.

At that time, he said, the platform will provide the first tool to “forecast availability of specific audiences that advertisers are looking for, across every screen.” Foster said this forecasting/audience targeting, utilizing data from Adobe Analytics and Adobe’s data management platform Audience Manager, is 90 percent accurate.

Traditionally, TV ads are sold by the demographics their programs reach. If you wanted to show your ad to 18 to 34-year-old males who are in the market for a truck and make enough money to afford one, for instance, you might buy ads on a program that appeals to them, like NFL football.

But that involves a lot of wasted media spend, since women, men who don’t like trucks, older males and others also watch NFL football.

Instead, web-based advertising often targets audiences to specific content on specific websites, thus reaching more of the targeted group. TVMM is designed to bring that kind of audience targeting to TV ad planning, first in IP-based TV and then in addressable TV. Here’s a screenshot from the new platform:


Previously, Foster noted, Adobe Primetime focused on helping major TV program producers with “device fragmentation.”

A typical use case, he said, might have been: “I’m Comcast and I have to get Xfinity on to a dozen devices. We’ve been solving that problem [for several years].”

Primetime has dabbled in supporting online ads, he said, but that was “dipping our toes.”

Now, with TVMM, Primetime is evolving from “implementing programming in devices to selling inventory.” Eventually that inventory could include new kinds of entertainment programming like virtual reality, he said.

Opinions expressed in this article are those of the guest author and not necessarily MarTech. Staff authors are listed here.

About the author

Barry Levine
Barry Levine covers marketing technology for Third Door Media. Previously, he covered this space as a Senior Writer for VentureBeat, and he has written about these and other tech subjects for such publications as CMSWire and NewsFactor. He founded and led the web site/unit at PBS station Thirteen/WNET; worked as an online Senior Producer/writer for Viacom; created a successful interactive game, PLAY IT BY EAR: The First CD Game; founded and led an independent film showcase, CENTER SCREEN, based at Harvard and M.I.T.; and served over five years as a consultant to the M.I.T. Media Lab. You can find him at LinkedIn, and on Twitter at xBarryLevine.

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