Comcast Spotlight Forms Advanced-Ad Unit, Teams With SMGx

Comcast Spotlight, the ad sales division of Comcast, has created Comcast Media 360 (CM 360), a new business unit focused on delivering targeted, interactive and cross-platform advertising capabilities.

In conjunction with the formation of CM 360, ad agency Starcom MediaVest Group Exchange (SMGx) has secured the participation of three clients to use the MSO's advanced-advertising capabilities, with campaigns scheduled to run later this year. The companies did not identify the advertisers.

CM 360 will be led by group vice president Andrew Ward, previously group vice president of integrated media sales. The group will have three regional VPs for East, Central and West, reporting to Ward.

The CM 360 marketing solutions include on-air advertising across dozens of networks in more than 80 markets, dynamic ad insertion on video-on-demand, long-form VOD content, interactive program guide banner messages, advertising on and mobile applications.

The unit's solution will be focused in three primary areas: targetability, to use consumer-segmentation tools and Comcast's infrastructure to deliver commercial messages to defined geographic and/or demographic groups; interactivity, using interactive platforms like request for information (RFI) and telescoping to long-form VOD content to enable deeper consumer engagement with advertising content; and accountability, to work with third-party research companies to measure ad results.

"Viewers increasingly expect to control where, when and how they watch their favorite shows, while advertisers are focused on delivering the right message to the right audience at the right time -- and Comcast Media 360 is the bridge that will link them," Charlie Thurston, president of Comcast Spotlight, said in a statement. "We're singularly focused on delivering impressions, and by putting all of our resources together, we can offer an unmatched marketing solution that delivers those impressions on TV, online and on-the-go."

Tracey Scheppach, SMGx's executive vice president of innovations, added, "Comcast Media 360 will provide advertisers with the opportunity to not only execute an integrated, cross-platform campaign at scale, but also understand, for the first time, how multiple screens work together. Our clients are demanding addressability, interactivity and accountability on all platforms. The formation of CM360 is a huge step in that direction."

Comcast Spotlight, based in New York, has a presence in nearly 90 markets with approximately 30 million owned and represented subscribers.