New Year’s Resolution: TubeMogul MD Nick Reid on reaching consumers in a cross-screen world

In the latest of a series of predictions on the year ahead, Nick Reid, UK managing director at TubeMogul, offers up his thoughts on what 2016 will bring.

It was said by Marc Andreessen that ‘software is eating – and changing the world’. Ask yourself: When was the last time you walked into a bank, travel agent or video shop?

Chances are that you, like many other Brits, no longer do – and if you wanted to, you might struggle as they are all disappearing from the high street. Why? Because software has changed the need for them to be part of your life. The same effect is happening with how media is planned and bought.

When programmatic first became a buzzword, it was all about RTB and auction-based trading to drive cost saving and efficiency. The programmatic world has continued to evolve and it’s now about automation using software for data-driven decisioning and reporting over your audience-based buying – whether for open RTB or programmatic direct. And its not just ‘digital’ programmatic. It now encompasses desktop, mobile, TV, radio, OOH and more. It’s about using software to plan and buy media, across any medium.

So what’s in store for next year? As technology has changed the market landscape it has fundamentally affected the consumer landscape in terms of how we interact and engage with content – whether that be written-word or sight, sound and motion. Mobile is now the second choice of platform to watch entertainment after TV –surpassing desktop. How many single-screen households exist now in the UK? How much appointment-to-view TV is still going on, disregarding the opportunity provided by TV catch-up through iPlayers etc? The consumer doesn’t care about the artificial separation between TV, digital and mobile. They want to watch content on any screen and any device.

The challenge, now, is how do brands reach consumers in a cross-screen world? How do they have a holistic approach, which uses automation and puts the audience first, so as to be more specific, relevant and efficient in the way they execute?

To have a cross-screen approach, you need to have the ability to plan, buy and measure across all screens. We have this now in the UK with desktop and mobile – we can track viewability and on-target audiences across both, verified by Nielsen DAR. To be truly cross-screen, you need TV. Television is the lynch-pin of all brand marketing plans. At the same time, it’s the medium that is changing exponentially.

We launched programmatic TV in the US last year and have seen this grow to be 20 per cent of our US revenue, in 12 months. The market in the UK is different – it has its nuances, like all TV markets do. However, the likes of Channel 4, Sky and, now, ITV, are evolving and embracing through technology, realising the cross-screen dream through software.

Brands and agencies are driving this change trying to catch up with the consumer and it is our goal to work with them hand-in-hand over the course of 2016 – either through research or the introduction of products such as our new cross-screen solution – to help them achieve success in this ever-changing landscape.

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