Joost TV & Google’s new TV ad-sales

Remember I applied to the beta, and begged people to send me a token (the quick-entry to Joost beta)? Well I still haven’t found one. Am getting quite miffed. :p

Here’s a review by the esteemed Frantic Industries:

Joost beta reviewed – TV just got a little smarter

I installed it, I started it, and in 5 seconds I was watching television.

I did it for an hour before I remembered that I’m actually supposed to review the thing. I guess there’s no greater praise, but for those who like details, I’ve included the details as well. So, here’s what I think about Joost, the latest project from the authors of Skype, formerly dubbed as the Venice Project, for whose beta I was lucky to be invited a couple of days ago.

Introduction and installation

Joost is a streaming P2P platform for television. It brings you TV or near-TV quality content in an application that uses P2P protocols to fetch the content, but it’s not really transparent to the user, who simply has to start using it and needs not worry about how it does its thing. The app is based on Mozilla’s XULRunner engine, which basically means it’s cross-platform. It’s ad-funded, and from what I understand you won’t be able to simply share content on Joost like you can on YouTube. It’s TV in the old fashioned sense of the word – they give you content, you watch it; only on internet. It makes up for this with the quality of the content and the features of the software.

More here.

Staying with TV, Google has again turned an industry on it’s head with the new AdSense style, auction-based ad-sales system for inventory running on 120-plus cable TV networks, second-by-second commercial ratings for the buys made through the system.

E-Trade, Intel, Others to Participate in Program That Will Also Offer Second-by-second Ad Ratings

120-plus cable channels
In a few short months, the service will be up and running as a closed trial. Already advertisers such as Intel, E-Trade and 1800Flowers have decided to participate.

The launch marketers and agencies will be able to go into their existing AdWords account and access a TV-advertising account. They can elect to have their ads run on any of Echostar’s 120-plus cable channels available and buy by daypart. Or marketers could ask a recommendation engine to generate a plan based on the demos a marketer is trying to reach.

Then the advertiser will bid for inventory on that particular daypart and channel in a blind auction, which means advertisers won’t see other bids and will only know what the winning bid price was if they indeed won the auction. All bidding will be based on household cost-per-thousand viewers, or CPMs. Google didn’t disclose whether Echostar would be able to set a minimum price for its inventory but, said Michael Steib, Google’s director of TV, “market dynamics will drive pricing.”

The killer app
But it may turn out to be the measurement aspects that provide the killer app for marketers. Twenty-four hours after bidding closes, Google will report back on the bids that won, the ads that ran and the audience for those specific ads. That means that unlike the TV-reporting situation — in which a marketer is given the overall rating for the program in which his or her ads ran — Google will report a rating for that specific ad. If a program generated 1 million viewers, but 50,000 tuned out before the commercial break commenced, Google would only report an audience of 950,000 for the ad.

Google will also use Echostar’s set-top box data to provide the second-by-second rating for each ad so a marketer can see how well the ad held the audience through its 30 or 60 seconds — and how many tuned out.

“But it may turn out to be the measurement aspects that provide the killer app for marketers.” Who are they kidding? Can you imagine a marketer turning down that down? The last paragraph on The Long Tail had interesting implications too – read more here. BTW it’s in America at the moment – don’t hold your breath Foxtel/Austar subscribers! This from PC Mag:

Google Ads Move Onto DirecTV

But industry analysts said Google is likely to meet with resistance from bigger cable TV operators like Comcast, Time Warner Cable Inc. or Cox Communications, who jealously guard data their cable systems generate on customer-viewing habits, seeing it as the crown jewel of what they sell to advertisers.

It also must face off against Nielsen Media Research—the incumbent media measurement firm synonymous with TV viewing ratings in the United States—and hot start-ups like Spot Runner, which is backed by WPP, Interpublic and CBS.

I don’t know, it won’t be just Google versus incumbents. It’ll be Google PLUS Advertisers vs Comcast, TimeWarner and so on. Change or die in this industry.

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  1. Ye gads. Ads, ads, ads. Isn’t anyone going to try a different model?

    Gimme pay-per-view, let me subscribe. Please. Anything. Just leave the ads out of it…

  2. When I was at ASTRA, someone mentioned SMS as being a revenue model. When I asked about it, apparently it generates the MOST revenue. Wierd huh? No wonder they had those court cases and investigations around SMS based shows in the UK.

    I don’t mind ads as long as they are clever and aren’t shown to me too often. And if anyone is going to deliver that, it will be Google who will know exactly the last time I saw the ad and under what conditions. With their ambient environment technology they’ll soon know what I muttered under my breath too. 🙂

  3. To make money out of the ad model you have to produce content that advertisers want to advertise in/on/between.

    I just think it’s a bit odd that Joost wants to disrupt tv (and good luck to them, I truly hope they manage it) but they are copying the model.

    Listened to Heather Albrecht at a seminar this week – ads are the cracks between content she said. Brands have to think like media companies, they need to become the content.

    If they seriously do that, and it would seem both sensible and desirable for them to do so, then there will be fewer ads to deliver to all these start-ups.

    And a lot more bad cookery shows.

    Now, please can I subscribe to just the English Premier League highlights show…?

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