Channel 4 predicts 50% of VoD inventory will be traded on demographic data by 2017

Channel 4 predicts that within two years as much as 50 per cent its advertising inventory on VoD (video-on-demand) will be traded based on demographically targeted information.

Currently, around 15 per cent of its VoD ad sales are ‘big data-enhanced’. The statistics were shared in a new paper from GfK looking at how the broadcast industry is harnessing data.

Sanjeevan Bala, head of data planning and analytics at Channel 4, said that these changes have resulted in “incremental revenue of between 30 per cent to 55 per cent depending on the ad product, compared to current VoD prices.”

The broadcaster is one of the more progressive in terms of how it packages its data for advertisers, becoming the first in Europe to sell its advertising inventory programmatically earlier this month.

The GfK report found that while more broadcast companies are trying to scoop more audience data by offering subscription-based and registration services, “most of the potential is still going unused.”

“The potential offered by big data is immense. Currently, everybody is engaged in data experimentation and there is a lot to fight for,” said Niko Waesche, global lead of the media and entertainment industry at GfK.

“There are some key questions and challenges around the use of big data, especially within a rapidly evolving TV consumption model.”

On how data is being used in the real world by Viacom – owner of channels such as MTV and Channel 5 - senior vice president Philip O’Ferrall said it is informing its commissioning decisions.

“If it’s a website view, a TV rating, or SVoD stream, we can clearly see which pieces of content are resonating.”

O’Ferrall added that it’s all about “the blend” of data: “What we are using is a blend of raw data from the mobile web and app usage in particular, who’s watching what, for how long and for what time. So it’s behavioral data for sure. Then we add third party feeds to help shape what we do with it, including Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and some set-top box data. But we also use traditional data like panels and groups. Data is never going to be the answer to everything, but it needs to be seen as a well-rounded tool.”

Key decision makers and executives from 14 media groups that sserve over 70 million subscribers were interviewed for the whitepaper.

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