Feature Commentary

A column where industry thought leaders share their POVs on issues that affect the broadcast media industry. (Feature commentaries do not necessarily reflect the opinions of TVB.) We welcome your feedback to: commentary@tvb.org.

Local Is Key Ad Drive In Presidential Election

Amid this season of firsts, constants have also emerged. Perhaps most significant is the role of local media and the level of engagement it continues to provide between candidates and constituents.…More >>

Check the Facts: Local TV Gets Voters

As pundits analyze Donald Trump’s keys to success and Marco Rubio’s demise, what many of these stories have in common is a dissection of the role television and TV advertising are playing in the 2016 contests. — Steve Lanzano, President & CEO, TVB, Campaigns & ElectionsMore >>

How To Make Stations The Must-See Medium

When TV stations can serve audiences anytime and anywhere, on the screen that is most convenient, they cement the role they play in informing and influencing viewers, especially millennials. This relevance also increases stations’ attractiveness to advertisers because they can deliver an audience throughout more of the day rather than in just a few time slots.…More >>

The Importance of Local Market Perspective

“As growth and competitive share challenges all businesses, a renewed understanding of the economic and social influences within local markets will enable marketing and advertising professionals to improve message relevance and investment opportunities.  Media strategies and advertising allocations as well as the complexity around measurement must also improve to enable more consistent transparency and comparable metrics at the local and national level.” — Maribeth Papuga, Executive-in-Residence to BIA/Kelsey BIA/Kelsey Executive in Residence Series Data - Driven Audience Planning & the Local Market AdvantageMore >>

Magid Perspectives: Key Ad-Tech Trends For 2016

Strategic priorities are shifting, technological capabilities are growing stronger, and high-level competition among large tech players is heating up. All of these will squeeze companies across all media verticals. Magid looks forward to leveraging its digital and ad-tech expertise to guide its partners through the emerging challenges of digital advertising in the year ahead.…More >>

See It, Say It: TV Still Drives Political Conversations

“Local broadcast TV is not only the best conversation starter tool to help campaigns with name and issue recognition, it also beats out other mediums in being seen as the most trusted source of information. 79 percent say that they are most likely to trust news they get from their local TV stations, compared to cable with 62 percent. Regardless of their political affiliation, Americans trust their local television stations the most for news.” — Steve Lanzano, President & CEO, TVB …More >>

May I Define Your Attention, Please?

Attention should be the currency we use as an industry, and recognizing it as such is hugely important for anyone in the advertising, media, or content business.More >>

Sony’s Amy Carney on the New Challenges in Sales, Research and Data

In this fascinating interview, Carney talks about her career path, her work at SPT, the impact of research, data and programmatic on the business, how her mentor shaped her career and how she achieves work-life balance.More >>

Leveraging Local TV Broadcast Scale and Relevance to Ignite Foundational Change

“TV stations serve as the patriarchs of local media mainly because of their core advantage to deliver localism, reach, impact and trust.”  More >>

The Half-Hour Drama of Picking a Show to Watch

Emily Steel with the New York Times and Tim Stenovec with Business Insider review how television as we know it is being upended, who will be the winners and losers, and what it means for consumers.More >>

TV is dead! Long live TV!

“Banners, search ads and YouTube don’t sell burgers by the billions, but TV does, and it does it day in and day out.” —Dave Morgan, CEO, SimulmediaMore >>

In Defense Of Swapping: TV Programmatic Inventory

“Concern over sufficient quality inventory has been a challenge to the acceptance of TV programmatic platforms. But there’s a precedent: broadcasters swapping their most valued video inventory with outside sales entities for cash or the promise thereof.” — Mitch Oscar, President HocusFocusMore >>

How Television Won the Internet

“Television shows can be sold again and again, with streaming now a third leg to broadcast and cable, offering a vast new market for licensing and syndication. Television is colonizing the Internet.” —Michael Wolff, media columnist, author of  “Television Is the New Television: The Unexpected Triumph of Old Media in the Digital Age.”More >>

MBPT Spotlight: Liberty, Equality and Fraternity for All TV Advertising

Consumers no longer discriminate between individual time slots or networks or even major mediums, instead mixing and matching to fit their demands at any given place or time. It’s an incredibly liberating proposition that promise to take television – the “new” television – into places it’s never broached before. — Brendan Condon, CEO, AdMore   …More >>

Madison & Wall: No Advertising? Cannes Do

“Television arguably best satisfies the goals of marketers focused on reach, frequency and brand awareness in a lean-back environment better than any alternative. Similarly, digital advertising exists because most advertisers relying on the medium do so because it satisfies certain other goals – such as engaging with narrowly-defined groups of consumers or driving them to a direct action such as buying something over the web – better than alternatives.” —Brian Wieser, CFA, Senior Research Analyst, Pivotal Research Group   …More >>

During Baltimore’s Painful Week, Local TV Reporters Shine

“I don’t want to talk to or hear from anyone who can’t recall what Baltimore was like long before this Monday. I’d rather watch local anchors such as WBAL’s Barry Simms, who reported all day on Tuesday from the block where he was raised.”— Stacia Brown, Writer & Contributor, The Washington PostMore >>

Madison & Wall: TV: Reaching To The Converted

“TV’s reach has held up over the past several years, with the vast majority of American households watching each of the largest broadcast networks, whose dominance over cable networks continues…The reality is that broadcast network programming remains as important as it has been for many years for the vast majority of the population.”—Brian Wieser, CFA, Senior Research Analyst, Pivotal Research Group    …More >>

Are You Ready for Data Science?

“Having the right architecture for your data science function is as important as having the right architecture for your physical work environment.” — Shelly Palmer, Managing Director, Digital Media Group at Landmark Ventures…More >>

Local Broadcast TV’s Integral Role in American Culture

The ability of local broadcast TV stations to serve our nation’s local communities rests on the existence of viable revenue streams that Congress has traditionally made available to promote local television service.  Compromising the ability of local TV stations to compete for such revenue streams would create a regulatory imbalance that would threaten the unique benefits of localism and ultimately jeopardize the future of local broadcast TV. …More>>

Changes, Fast and Slow: Horizon's Bill Koenigsberg on the Upfronts, Viewability and More

If you committed all your dollars then that kind of ties your hands in terms of reacting in real time, said Mr. Koenigsberg.…More>>

Mobile Marketing: Still Early Innings For Brands

Brands are beginning to put much more serious resources into mobile marketing, especially including the development and promotion of apps. We continue to see mobile advertising and app-install ads as still in the early innings of a very long game.— Brian Wieser, CFA, Pivotal Research Group…More>>

The Process of Buying TV Ads Is About to Undergo a Huge Shift

As the concept of “television” evolves into advanced TV, The Trade Desk is poised with the world’s most sophisticated agencies and tech partners to seize that opportunity just as we did when publishers brought inventory into the RTB marketplace a few years ago. The speed of this paradigm shift is accelerating, and the opportunity for advertisers—and viewers—is immense. — Jeff Green, AdweekMore>>

Dumb Stuff Said in Washington, D.C.

Inside the bubble of Washington, DC — which often challenges Hollywood as the true entertainment capital of the world — one hears astonishingly silly proclamations almost daily… —Dennis Wharton, EVP Communications, NAB…More>>

In God We Trust (Everyone Else Bring Data)

The issue of secular vs. cyclical shifts of spending in advertising remains as one of the most critical factors impacting media stocks and played out as an important issue this past week over the course of a flurry of earnings reports from owners of national TV properties. Which view (or views) are right? As the vast majority of media owners have now reported their third quarter results, we can put our own conjecture aside for the moment and focus on what the new data is telling us instead. —Brian Wieser, CFA, Pivotal Research Group…More>>

A Revisionist’s Recent History of TV and Internet Advertising

One of the most important historical “facts” underpinning why national TV ad spending has been weak this year is the idea that the industry is experiencing some kind of broadbased “shift” by marketers, collectively. While we are fully aware that the large brands who dominate TV have been incrementally shifting spending into digital media for nearly 20 years, we have disagreed that anything particularly radical is occurring at this time, at least on a broad basis. —Brian Wieser, CFA, Pivotal Research Group…More>>

MBPT Spotlight: In 2015, the Programmatic TV Tipping Point Begins

The reality is that both buyer and seller can potentially benefit from programmatic TV. Media agencies can achieve lower effective target CPMs (true advertiser target) while sellers can improve yield. And all players complete transactions in less time, with fewer mistakes.…More>>

TV Automation is Already Here -- Retire The Fax Jokes

The good news is that a sizable portion of the TV industry has already successfully adopted the sidecar approach for programmatic TV.  They are already delivering on the vision of programmatic TV execution with the same automation and optimization that digital ad tech provides. —Walt Horstman, President, AudienceXpress…More>>

TV: Simple Medium, Complicated Analysis

The economy continues to produce new brands who seek to distinguish themselves from their competitors on the basis of awareness of differentiation of brand attributes. Television in general – and network TV in particular – remains the least inefficient way to accomplish this goal despite a myriad of alternative choices and despite high absolute costs. -Brian Wieser, CFA, Pivotal Research Group…More>>

Upfronts Still Stunt Newfronts

Brian Wieser, CFA, Pivotal Research Group: “…we continue to believe that any shift from TV to online video is little more than a trickle, rather than a flood....To the extent online video really does compete for TV budgets, it will most likely occur with smaller cable networks.”…More>>

Nielsen Data: TV Dominates Time, Other Media Grows

Brian Wieser, CFA, Pivotal Research Group: “If time equated to money…either too much
money is being spent on internet advertising or too little is being spent on TV.”…More>>

Silverman Out To Remake Local Broadcasting

Harry A. Jessell, TVNewsCheck, discusses programming legend Fred Silverman's belief that TV stations' future is in producing their own entertaiment programming, with opportunities in daytime, primetime (especially Saturday) and on subchannels.  "There’s gold in their backyards that can be mined," Silverman says. "What a lot of local stations don’t realize is that they have weathermen who are more popular in their respective communities than a lot of national personalities."…More>>

Super Bowl Underscores the Big Business of Must-See, Live TV

David Carr, of The New York Times reminds us that “live events — including the N.F.L.’s regular season, the Grammys, the Oscars and the Golden Globes” — satisfy “a deep hunger for a common experience and all the ritual that accompanies it.”…More>>

Why Sports Is Must-See TV -- Especially in the Digital Era

“But just about any day of the week is a big one in the television sports industry, because sports is one of the few categories of programming that doesn't lend itself to delayed viewing or binge-watching. It just about must be seen live.  Sports has it all: drama, suspense, anger, comedy, jubilation, amongst a range of other human emotions. Despite the plethora of reality competition shows that solicit viewer voting, it may be the one area where audiences really feel that they make a difference in the outcome.”  Hillary Atkin, The Atkin ReportMore>>

Why TV Ad Spend Will Grow More Than Digital Spend In The Next Five Years

Dave Morgan, CEO of Simulmedia, predicted at the closing panel of  Gridley & Company’s 13th Annual Marketing, Internet, Financial Technology and Outsourcing Services Conference that  TV ad spend in the U.S. will grow more each year for the next five years than digital video ads will.More>>

TV - Not Dying. Diversifying.

Mike Bloxham, vice president, national TV and video at Frank N. Magid Associates discusses “the biggest player in the ecosystem: TV” and where the focus should be—“across any screen that can deliver it.”More>>

Local TV News: The Solid Medium

Bruce Goerlich, CRO, Rentrak: "the relatively low-tech medium of local news delivers a substantial audience day in and day out, provides reach, and can deliver traditional, and online buyers. I believe that solid delivery can help form the broad base of a media strategy."More>>

Note To Brands: Make Your Own Kind Of Network

Dario Spina, MediaPost: "If marketers think boldly — like the Millennials — and build their own virtual networks, then they’ll truly and powerfully connect with this always connected audience.  And maybe then the Millennials will inspire even more creativity in us, and just a bit less terror."…More>>

Media Industry Challenge: Over-Supply By Jack Myers

Jack Myers discusses the impact of programmatic and automated systems being developed for media buying and selling in the industry and the fundamental shift in demand vs.supply.More>>

Local TV Broadcast News Drives Audience Engagement

Kathy Crosett of Media Sales Today spotlights TVB's "American Conversation" study and reminds her readers of the importance of local broadcast news.More>>

Finding The Glue To Make Local TV Stick

With all the recent mergers and acquisitions among TV station group owners, the question is no longer whether or not there will be a small group of local TV empires. Tim Daniel in TVNewsCheck discusses the question - which ones will succeed and which ones will fail? Empires that succeed and endure have created the best "social glue" and it turns out home-grown glue is the best.  And nobody does local better than local television broadcasters.More>>

The Future of Television May Be Only One Screen

Reporting from the NY Games Conference, Charlene Weisler discusses "What is television today and what are the challenges to the current business model?"More>>

Cable's Edge Over Broadcast: More Ad Time

Jon Swallen Chief Research Officer, Kantar Media Intelligence North America discusses cable's ad revenue increase via the addition of what basically amounts to one more :20 ad per hour annually since January 2010.More>>

Facebook's Video Initiative Is A Reach
By Brian Wieser, CFA, Senior Research Analyst, Pivotal Research Group

If there is a single most important take-away from the PR effort associated with this news, it is that it may serve to highlight how "reach" can be more important than impressions or ratings, especially in context of our focus on why we have argued that television dominates the media budgets for most of the world's largest brands. Reach matters more than ratings from a planning perspective, and planners are more influential than buyers in allocating budgets across media.More >

Jack Myers Predictions for the Future of Media and Advertising

Jack Myers shares his predictions for how the digital media ecosystem will emerge; what the future holds for content; and how marketers, agencies and media companies will respond. Jack’s predicts the future of Google, media buying and planning, TV networks, and the network TV Upfront. More>>

The Power of Local TV

Bruce Goerlich, CRO, Rentrak discusses the power of local TV in its localness—its ability to connect and unite communities. The best example of this is the reaction of TV viewers to traumatic events.More>>

Who Are They Kidding?

Dennis Wharton of The NAB discusses Time Warner Cable's urging of "reform" of retransmission consent laws and their "concern" over rising cable rates.More>>

Helicopters Bring Viewers Vivid Images of Tornado

Our hearts go out to the people of Moore, Oklahoma who suffered unspeakable losses in the wake of this week's tornado. We are proud of the critical role local broadcast television played in the lives of Moore citizens and "friends of Moore" that tuned in from across the country. In this featured article, Brian Stelter of The New York Times discusses this latest tragedy, and how local TV news professionals rose up in the face of utter devastation. "The live pictures and reporting...reminded some of the enduring value of local broadcasters at a time when apps and social networks tend to get more attention."More>>

Mister Rogers: No Tattoos, But Wisdom To Spare

Karen Herman, director of the TV Academy Foundation's Archive of American Television reflects on her 1999 interview with Fred Rogers and his thoughts on the power of television to educate.More>>

Over-The-Air And Streaming Outweigh Cable, Sat Bill

Andrew Dodson of TVNewsCheck expresses a deeper appreciation for the magic of broadcasting.More>>

Ad Economy Update
By Brian Wieser, CFA, Senior Research Analyst, Pivotal Research Group

We recently conducted a survey of media industry participants, cutting across different functions to gather a broad perspective on the state of advertising. We heard almost universally that uncertainty in the macro-economy is having no impact on advertising budgets. More >

Making The Strong Case For Local TV News

In response to commentary by Ed Rabel critical of local TV news, the president-GM of WXII Greensboro/Winston-Salem, N.C., rebuts: "We live in a new golden age of over-the-air television. Leading stations with strong newscasts find themselves offering more services to more people than ever before."More>>

Peter Dunn, CBS Stations President, Sounds Off On Pew Study

B&C guest poster, Peter Dunn, president of CBS Television Stations, disagrees with some findings in Pew’s “The State of the News Media 2013.”More >>

The Triumph Of Disinformation
By Bob Hoffman, The Ad Contrarian

In the 3rd quarter of 2012, television continued to dominate video viewing. According to Nielsen's 3rd quarter 2012 Cross-Platform ReportMore >

Assessing TV Networks: Reaching For The Right Metrics
By Brian Wieser, CFA, Senior Research Analyst, Pivotal Research Group

While ratings remain an important metric for media industry observers to monitor, they are only one variable involved in determining how valuable a TV network is to advertisers. As ratings converge between broadcast and cable networks in particular, the insights that ratings provide on the health of a network will also diminish. By contrast, reach – and a network’s incremental reach in context of the rest of a marketer’s plans – has become more important in recent years, because it becomes harder to cost-effectively aggregate reach. To the extent that fragmentation continues, the importance of reach will only grow into the future.More >

What’s Coming In 2013? Think Technology.

Ann Mack, director of trendspotting at JWT, talks to Media Life about why 2013 may be the year that tech really takes over and why trends should matter to media buyers. Click here for JWT’s 10 Trends for 2012 Executive SummaryMore >>

The Future Is Already Here (It's Just Not Very Evenly Distributed)
By Brian Wieser, CFA, Senior Research Analyst, Pivotal Research Group

We wrote an extensive piece on viewing trends of kids this week, highlighting the notion that there is no sufficiently high-quality data to support any assertion that the rise of online video and Netflix is related to declining TV viewing among kids. Nonetheless, many among our readership are adamant that their observations within their own households and among their friends confirm the secular trend thesis. While some segments of the population are heavy users of online video, even this segment still watches a lot of traditional TV. Live-only television will continue to account for the dominant share of video viewing until much further into the future than any investor should likely be concerned with.More >

Copyright or Copywrong?
By Brian Wieser, CFA, Senior Research Analyst, Pivotal Research Group

The US Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation held a hearing this week on “The Cable Act at 20”. The hearing highlighted to us that Congress is paying particular attention to the regulatory matters which drive so much of the video industry’s structure. Broadcasters benefit from the status quo despite technological change around them, which can’t be stopped under any circumstance. However, broadcasters should hope that their efforts to use the law to restrain the growth of technology (including the delivery of broadcast signals over IP) won’t have the unintended consequence of unleashing regulatory changes which will not prove as beneficial as those regulations which are in place today.More >

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