Sky Media is predicting the biggest change in media buying since the emergence of â€˜onlineâ€™ thanks to its new advertising solution Sky AdVance, which enables unified advertising campaigns that combine classic television, online video and other forms of digital advertising like display, encompassing Skyâ€™s digital properties but also third-party digital inventory purchased through DSPs (demand side platforms). Sky AdVance manages the messages that we see, the order in which we see them and how often we see them, despite the fact that we may be swapping between media types and devices all day long.
Sky AdVance is currently being tested on live campaigns with around 20 different advertisers. Sky Media (the advertising sales division of Sky) will make the solution available to the rest of the market from January 2016.
Using this new product, advertisers know whether someone has seen a television advertisement and can then reinforce that exposure by targeting them again online, whether through display ads or on-demand video inventory, for example. Alternatively, they could â€˜chaseâ€™ the people who did not see the television ad, using digital advertising to reach them instead. Advertisers can also deliver a digital campaign to viewers of a particular show or group of shows, or to people that like specified content genres like food programming.
Examples of the Sky digital inventory you can integrate into this kind of unified campaign are on-demand video on Sky Go, Sky email and the Sky website. It must be emphasized: Sky AdVance is not just for reaching consumers on Sky digital properties â€“ you can use it with any digital advertising alongside television.
When combining television and digital using Sky AdVance you can limit the total number of times someone sees an advertisement. This frequency capping is a powerful weapon when it comes to multiscreen and multi-platform marketing.
Seeking out consumers across different screens and media is one thing; knowing how often they have seen your ads, and which ad creatives they have seen, is a separate challenge. Unless you can identify your target consumer or household and then gather data about what they have seen on every screen, you could end up blasting them with the same advertisement time and again, hitting them on television various times and then online everywhere they go. After a while this becomes inefficient because you are wasting ads on people who have either absorbed the message already or who are simply not going to take notice.
Meanwhile, if the advertising campaign uses more than one creative and the creatives are designed to be seen in a certain sequence, the power of this advertising concept is diminished when people see them in the â€˜wrongâ€™ order, or see too many of one creative and not enough of the other. Serving different ads to different locations and on different devices raises the chances of non-ordered viewing or ad saturation. Sequence management, along with frequency capping, solves this problem but it requires knowledge of what an individual or household has already been exposed to on all their viewing devices. This multiscreen and multichannel data is the building block for Sky AdVance.
Sky Media can provide information on which channels, programmes, ad spots and sponsorship videos people have seen, for example, together with how recently and how often they have seen them. The company can link online browsing and digital viewing to a Sky TV or Sky Broadband household (or individual consumer) and Sky can therefore profile the online user as belonging to a particular demographic. Nobody can identify the individual consumers, of course, taking care of privacy issues.
Jamie West, Deputy MD at Sky Media, explains: â€œBy allowing sequential and consequential targeting we can ensure creative is seen in the order intended, delivered with maximum impact. A luxury car marque could play out a 60 second TV commercial to arouse interest and then arrange for banners to appear around online content once the TV ad has been seen in that household, offering test drives and monthly finance options, for example.â€
The frequency capping takes account of how many times someone has seen the ad on television and online (in various places, like display or within on-demand video). Sequential management is also cross-screen and cross-media, so if you saw Creative 1 on Sky satellite TV, the campaign management system will know this and serve you Creative 2 later that evening when you are watching Sky Go on your tablet (if that is what the ad campaign rules require). Frequency capping can also be applied to each creative, so the advertiser can limit someone to three versions of Creative 1 (across all screens) and two versions of Creative 2 (across all screens), as an example.
So there are a few elements to Sky AdVance: addressing the most relevant and interested audiences for advertisers on any screen; using television viewing behaviour as the basis for who you target online; having a clear understanding of the advertising that consumers have seen both on television and online; and being able to manage frequency and sequential viewing across all screens. The bottom line is that advertisers can plan and execute campaigns that are viewer-centric and device agnostic.
Sky Media sees an opportunity to deliver on the promise of truly unified multi-platform campaigns. West declares: â€œAdvertising is a form of story-telling, delivered through meticulously sequenced campaigns on screens, posters, newspapers and other media. But while campaigns have always been integrated across different channels when they are conceived, their execution has always been more fragmented.
â€œTV buyers buy TV and digital buyers buy digital – with different deals, metrics, briefs and agencies. This problem has become more acute in a digital world where viewers are switching between mobile devices as well as computer and TV screens. Sky AdVance is a significant development because it allows advertisers to create a complete journey for viewers across devices â€“ TV, mobile and tablet – so that audiences see the right ad at the right time, in the right sequence and on the right screen.â€
Sky Media talks about interweaving TV and digital advertising and West reckons there are clear benefits to consumers when Sky AdVance is used. â€œThey will see more relevant advertising and also in meaningful sequences,â€ he says.
More on advanced advertising
Interested in multiscreen advertising, the combined use of television and digital to improve campaigns, and advanced advertising generally? Check out Future TV Advertising Forum 2015, London, December 2-3.