NBCU Launches Linear Programmatic Sales

NBCUniversal said it is adding linear broadcast and cable inventory to its programmatic ad sales offering.

Beginning this fall advertisers will be able to use data to plan and buy media plans targeting specific audiences via automated systems. The expanded NBCUx will be a part of NBCU's upfront sales.

NBCU will make its inventory and pricing information available to select advertisers via certain demand-side platforms.

Related: NBCU Cash Flow Up Despite Higher TV Costs

"Our goal is to give our advertisers as many ways to access the high-value target audiences they want to reach within our premium content," said Dan Lovinger, executive VP entertainment advertising sales group, NBCUniversal. "Our NBCUx digital programmatic offering was a key component to our clients' success last year and we expect that by adding premium TV inventory to the mix, it will greatly enhance their efforts. The launch of NBCUx for linear TV is another example of our commitment to innovation on behalf of our clients."

Lovinger said clients will be able to use their own data, third-party data and information about NBCU's inventory to build media plans to target consumers.

Programmatic sales have been worrisome to TV networks because prices of digital banner ads plunged when automated technology came into the market.

But Krishan Bhatia, executive VP, business operations and strategy at NBCU, said that the system will not employ real time bidding, giving NBCU more control over pricing.
Over the past two years, NBCUniversal has made programmatic buying available to advertising clients for its digital video and display inventory.

Related: NBCUniversal Reorganizes Syfy, USA Under New Banner

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.