NBCU in Advanced Ad Deals with 4C, FreeWheel Operative

NBCUniversal said it formed new alliances that, along with proprietary technology will let it offer advanced advertising capabilities to advertisers during the upfront.

4C Insights, Operative and FreeWheel Operative are helping the Comcast unit optimize campaign, plan across media investments and schedule across linear and digital platforms concurrently.

NBCU also said it will be able to transact in a number of different ways, letting marketers find the best way to make advertising investments, and is offering guarantees across all audiences.

In addition NBCU will be giving clients a choice of how to transact their media buys so they're not tied to the traditional age-sex demo measurement. I addition to those traditional broad reach audiences, NBCU will let buyers transact on demo target audiences using data from Nielsen, 4C Insights and NBCU’s own AdSmart; Advanced Target audiences; and buy sponsorships and live events.

NBCU has been moving to sell all of its networks, web properties and other media and marketing assets as a single entity. Those will include Peacock, the streaming service, launching April 15, that will serve as an advanced advertising laboratory NBCU and its clients.

“Up until now there's been a value trade-off that marketers have had to contend with: storytelling and premium content or scale, targeting or reach, technology for safety,” said Linda Yaccarino, chairman of ad sales and client partnership at NBCU during a phone conference with reporters. “Not anymore. Thanks to NBCUniversal is one platform for the first time ever marketers will have the best of both worlds all in one place.”

The latest announcement is part of NBCU’s efforts to update the TV business. It’s new platform will “help us transform the viewing experience with real insights into what works. It lets us protect our partners who trust us with their Investments and allow us to offer an all platform audience guarantee,” Yaccarino said.

“It's a major shift for this company from how we operate to how we monetize and it's a transformation that will dramatically improve the advertising experience for our viewers and opportunities for our clients on NBCU and we hope eventually across the entire industry,” she added.

NBCU’s upgraded capabilities include:

Optimization: NBCU is expanding its AdSmart ad products by including Nielsen demo target audiences and 4C insights to introduce a cross-platform optimizer for unduplicated reach across linear and digital.

Planning & Delivery: NBCU said it is working with top ad tech companies to simplify and streamline the planning and delivery process for marketers. Operative will help NBCU unify planning to create clear proposals and ensure efficiency across every investment. With FreeWheel, a Comcast company, NBCU will unify scheduling and trafficking of campaigns across linear and digital platforms concurrently.

Measurement: NBCU will be expanding its CFlight cross-platform impression measurement systems to include OTT co-viewing, out-of-home and short-form video. NBCU said it is developing in-campaign and post-campaign measurement dashboards to provide clients with timely insights into how each impression across platforms impacts their business.

“We've been making significant capital investments in new technology capabilities that deliver more flexibility efficiency and greater efficacy to marketers as well as a better ad experience for consumers,” said Krishan Bhatia, executive VP of business operations & strategy; at NBCU.

Many of these technology capabilities have been built at NBC Universal, he said. “We're building a platform to bring our partners campaigns to life and new and exciting ways.”

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.