TV juggernauts bring in consultants for new world ad portal

Pippa Chambers
By Pippa Chambers | 23 July 2018

Australia’s major TV networks have united for the greater good of making it easier for advertisers and agencies to buy TV inventory.

On behalf of its shareholders Foxtel/MCN, Network Ten, Nine, and Seven West Media, industry group ThinkTV has engaged the services of Accenture's advisory firm IBB Consulting to help form a new TV portal.

The 'briefing portal', aims to make the process of briefing and buying TV simpler and working with IBB, the full scope of the development is now being nutted out.

The move is bold and a sign networks can put their rivalry aside in order to accomplish TV's bigger quest in driving greater efficiency for clients.

It's the second time in just a week that the industry has come together to drive the market forward. Last week, Fairfax and News Corp agreed to use each other's printing networks under a deal that will deliver cost savings.

The upcoming TV portal will streamline briefing for fixed placement and automated TV spot trading by allowing buyers to log in and brief broadcasters on their campaigns once through a single dashboard. This will standardise the process with each network, doing away with the current repetitive steps required.

RFP is out

Network Ten’s executive general manager for revenue and client partnerships, Rod Prosser, says: “The ThinkTV briefing portal is a great example of what can be achieved when an industry comes together to develop a product that makes it easier for its customers.

“It’s world leading and one of many industry collaborations coming up. We’re looking forward to sharing with you further progress in the future.”

IBB’s work has culminated in a detailed request for proposal that selected vendors are responding to in the third quarter of 2018.

ThinkTV says initial development will be tightly focused so that the first stage of the solution can be released quickly to the market with subsequent iterations expanding the portal’s capabilities.

ThinkTV chief executive Kim Portrate says ThinkTV shareholders were fully aligned on the project, with the same mission to help advertisers and their agencies get the best out of today’s multi-platform TV marketplace.

“A core part of that is by making TV easier to trade,” Portrate says.

“This solution will deliver scale and work flow efficiencies for advertisers, agencies and broadcasters and work has begun in earnest to deliver it. It is a complex project and we are consulting media agencies and advertisers to ensure it meets their needs.” 

'More to come'

The centralised briefing portal is being designed to act as a corridor between the buyer and seller.

The plan is for it to “seamlessly connect” agencies and advertisers to broadcasters’ own trading platforms.

ThinkTV’s shareholders have already made significant investments in automating their trading platforms through Nine’s 9Galaxy, Seven’s Code7 and Landmark, which is used for buying inventory from Foxtel/MCN and Network Ten.

This new briefing interface offering a single online destination for any advertiser or agency wishing to enter a brief into any of those systems, takes it one major step further. Ultimately, it makes it quicker and easier to book TV.

Seven West Media chief revenue officer Kurt Burnette says around the world collaboration in business sectors is becoming a key factor for success.

“The ThinkTV briefing portal very much goes to that idea and highlights the real and meaningful collaboration that is happening and will continue to occur for TV and 'Total Video' in this country,” he says.

Nine chief sales officer Michael Stephenson, echoes this, adding that it's “a great first step with more to come”.

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