The recent Local Video Summit in New York City pointed out the desire for brands and agencies to better understand and effectively target local audiences with online video, but their frustrations as well. The major theme that emerged is the desire to solve the local problem with technology due to the large scale and complexity of brand campaigns in multiple local markets.
Utilizing programmatic platforms was the overwhelming consensus for approaching a solution because of the rich local data that can be fed into these platforms to better inform buying decisions and in developing buying personas. On the panel where Thrive Analytics spoke the conversation focused on how the metrics for measuring local success varied from broader brand campaign metrics. In an earlier session, Perry Sook, Chairman, President and CEO of Nexstar Broadcasting, said “what drives locals are media approaches that make the register ring, plain and simple.” According to our local merchant surveys, engagement and brand awareness, fall well behind measurements such as calls, appointments, foot traffic and redemptions of coupons or promotional offers. Local merchants need to “feel the impact of their media investment.”
Discussing the trend of both national advertisers and local advertisers utilizing programmatic online video buying solutions, the focus remains on enabling local franchise owners, brand partners and local merchants access to local inventory. In its current state, however, much of the local premium inventory remains in the hands of local media companies who continue to sell the bulk of their premium inventory direct. Part of this approach to controlling online inventory is the view that what is considered premium inventory for a brand isn’t the same for a local advertiser or franchisee. While brand campaigns have broad reach and frequency goals to enable discovery and engagement, local merchants and franchise locations have the need to drive shopping and buying actions from specific audiences, often within defined locations and socio economic groups.
One factor holding back agencies and media buying platforms is a lack of access to local buying data which is often guarded by brands as proprietary. Data insights on transactions, loyalty and purchase history would all help to better inform and target programmatic buying.
Even with the challenges of media placement and campaign success measures, local data access and scarcity of premium video inventory, agencies and their ad tech partners are diligently working to solve these problems. Yashi, creator of the Local Video Summit, announced a number of new initiatives to provide deeper audience analysis and targeting capabilities while also protecting advertisers against fraudulent views.
In order for online video to continue to grow at its rapid pace, local needs to be brought into the picture with more affordable video production services and access to the tools and targeting capabilities to launch and measure local campaigns. What is good for local will be good for brands with local operations and franchise networks.