TV in the U.S. has had "upfronts" - where networks host previews of upcoming seasons for big advertisers, agencies, and news media, and start advance selling of premium ad spots - for decades.The Interactive Advertising Bureau now hosts Digital Content Newfronts - an upfront event showcasing online content and advertising opportunities.
The initial reaction was skeptical - after all there's no scarcity in the display ads market. However, the last year or so has seen the growth of high-quality video ads, sponsorship opportunities for high-profile sites and content. More importantly, audience research is showing that online video ads and exclusive sponsorships can have significant impacts - in fact, they may just be more valuable than many traditional media opportunities. Add to that the fact that the TV and cable networks keep hiking rates even as viewing falls, and we're starting to see advertisers thinking about other outlets.
"The only way to reverse that trend is think about video in a different way and move dollars across screens," said Universal McCann Chief Media Officer David Cohen. "Is this the year we see a billion moving into the (online ad) market? Could be."With premium online opportunities limited, the Newfronts are getting interest and involvement from top content producers and advertisers and agencies - and opening the events to a range of online advertising formats. The events are also producing deals - deals totally in the hundreds of millions (US dollars) were reportedly made at this year's Newfronts - a sizable share of an online advertising market expected to exceed $1 billion.
YouTube sales chief Suzie Reider said it's important to present an organized, united front to the buying community. "This is about "We've grown up,'" she said. "We're not a ragtag group of digital sites."
Source - Digital Newfronts Poised to Rake in $1 Billion in Ad Deals, Advertising Age