Google Looks to Sell TV Ad Inventory

Google, which dominates the online advertising world but has failed in attempts to crack the TV market, says it is adding traditional TV inventory to its ad buying software.

Google's DoubleClick Bid Manager will have inventory from Google Fiber and partners clypd and WideOrbit.

TV networks have been very careful about letting their ad inventory out into automated systems over which they have little control. And they’ve balked at approaches by Google in the past.

Related: Google Working With comScore to Measure Brand Safety

But in a blog post Google optimistically spelled out the benefit of doing business its way.

“With their inventory now available through DoubleClick Bid Manager, television networks and station owners get access to new types of buyers, such as advanced TV buying groups in agencies, digital-first advertisers, and even global advertisers. Many of these buyers already use DoubleClick, but until now, have had limited access to US TV audiences,” said Rany Ng, director of product management at Google.

Some campaign effectiveness tools will be available via Double Click as will some aspects of programmatic technology.

Related: Analyst: Digital Ad Woes Could Help TV Marginally

“Programmatic technology has already automated some of the manual processes associated with buying digital video, and with these new integrations we’ll be extending many of the same workflow improvements to traditional TV,” the blog post said.

Simulmedia, a pioneer in the programmatic TV space, said that Google’s new entry appeared to be mostly an automation play.

“It is not about making TV advertising more predictable, provable and performant. It is not Performance TV,” said Dave Morgan, CEO of Simulmedia. “

We applaud this move, in that it is yet one more attack by a large digital disruptor on the core of legacy TV ad buying and selling, and we will see many more of these kinds of announcements,” Morgan said. The more disruption to the TV ad business, the more marketers will rethink and reevaluate their current practices and the more opportunities for companies like Simulmedia to show them the potential of Performance TV."

Jon Lafayette

Jon has been business editor of Broadcasting+Cable since 2010. He focuses on revenue-generating activities, including advertising and distribution, as well as executive intrigue and merger and acquisition activity. Just about any story is fair game, if a dollar sign can make its way into the article. Before B+C, Jon covered the industry for TVWeek, Cable World, Electronic Media, Advertising Age and The New York Post. A native New Yorker, Jon is hiding in plain sight in the suburbs of Chicago.