Expect to hear a lot about addressable advertising over the next year. The latest player to offer targeting on the living room TV is Hearst Television, which today launched Hearst Anyscreen. By tapping into this private marketplace advertisers can reach Hearst viewers on a variety of connected devices including Roku, Android TV, Apple TV, DirecTV Now, Google Chromecast, Sling TV, Sony Crackle, PlayStation Vue, Xbox, and a handful of other connected TV operating systems. OnlineVideo.net asked a Hearst representative the total size of addressable audience Hearst can reach, but didn’t receive an answer by press time. Caveat emptor.
While Hearst is shy on numbers, it does promise “scale,” according to Jonathan Sumber, the company’s vice president of digital sales. It also promises 650 niche targets thanks to a deal with Dataxu.
Hearst Anyscreen also claims to provide transparency, accountability, and delivery, in a press statement that seems to be playing buzzword bingo. Hearst doesn’t mention how it will ensure that transparency.
What Hearst’s announcement does mention is breadth of content it provides. It includes local content in 39 states, it says, although it doesn’t mention which markets. The ad platform includes content from Hearst partners such as ESPN “and the various program brands of A+E Networks.” It includes content from AMC, CW, Discovery, Food Network, HGTV, and Travel Channel. Hearst owns 20 percent of the ESPN channels, and 50 percent of A+E Networks channels.
“Hearst is particularly well positioned as a premium video publisher, both locally and nationally,” said Jordan Wertlieb, Hearst Television’s president, in a press statement. “When we combine our content assets and partnerships with key distribution platforms, we have a very special value proposition for our clients.”
How special it is may depend on the size of the addressable audience it can reach and how it makes good on that promise for transparency.