Because Newsy easily achieved 70-90% completion rates on videos, demand grew. Although its first stab at programmatic was in the open marketplace, it realized it could develop first-look guarantees as it built its brand.
“As a whole, [programmatic] is about a 38% target for our entire revenue stream,” Morey said. “We’re doing a lot more direct deals than we did out of the gate, which is a great way to take those who are willing to pay a little more and give them first-look access to our content and align their audience data and identify with the right content.”
Because Newsy’s videos feature daily news across business, tech, sports and entertainment, it attracts a strong millennial audience, Morey claimed. It’s why insurance company GEICO did programmatic direct buys for Newsy’s inventory.
Newsy’s supply-side platform, Tremor, plugs into Google’s DoubleClick for Publishers ad server. The video publisher also works with other ad tech providers, including SpotXchange, which occupies a slot in its waterfall and helps facilitate programmatic direct deals for mobile video inventory, over-the-top TV and other channels.
It went live with Tremor’s real-time reporting dashboard at the end of the first quarter, which Morey monitors for live updates on ad requests, fill rates and impact on revenue. It enables him to see bids down to the second.
“I’m able to dial into individual channels and see what’s driving a particular spike,” he said. “When we know supply is booming on one channel, we’re able to get ahead of it [and alert demand partners] down to the second, rather than days. It helps guide our discussions with advertising partners on specific parts of our inventory.”
Although Morey declined to share specifics on which streaming platform performs best for the publisher, he noted over-the-top and connected TV have “taken off” for Newsy.
With parent Scripps’ ongoing deployment of an unnamed data management platform, Morey said Newsy is concurrently exploring ways to harvest more of its own audience data.
For instance, while completion rates are valuable, advertisers want to begin comparing cross-platform completion rates and cross-reference them with audience data.
“There’s this great frontier for data in the space of connected television where we not only know the completion rate on Roku [vs. digital] but there are all these new parents on the platform and they’re into this kind of programming,” Morey said. “This allows you to create a really interactive unit on that platform that’s also directed to you based on your interests.”