Brand Safety: Digital Can Learn a Lot from TV

27 June 2017 • tvsquared

For the “On TV and Video” column, the folks at AdExchanger asked our CTO Kevin O’Reilly to talk about how the digital ad industry can learn from TV when it comes to brand safety.

Digital advertising has had a rough go in the last 12 months, with fraud, blocking and “fake news” issues dominating the headlines. Digital offers a lot, but advertisers give up a level of control over where and when their content runs. According to Kevin, while TV has learned amply from digital (most notably, real-time measurement and optimization), in the case of brand safety, digital needs to look toward TV.

With digital, an advertiser buys the person. With TV, advertisers buy content AND context – and they have an iron grip on their image:

“TV advertisers still have enormous power and control. That was made abundantly clear earlier this year when Mercedes pulled its ad spend from “The O’Reilly Factor” following disturbing allegations of sexual harassment against host Bill O’Reilly. More than 50 other advertisers followed suit, and despite the program bringing in nearly 20% of the network’s ad revenue, Fox ousted O’Reilly after 20 years.”

So, how can digital level the playing field with brand safety? Digital verification services are showing promise of ensuring the “safety” of sites where ad content appears. Digital publishers are also taking on more responsibility around content, with stronger curation, add-on services and filtering tools.

Read Kevin’s article in its entirety: “Digital’s Brand-Safety Woes and Lessons from TV