IAB’s Newfronts: Online program makers pitch action, cross-platform mini-brands and the shape of the new TV
YouTube is settling into its role as a star-maker, even as other program producers are booming with content ideas and social energy.
Based on a day I spent last week at the Interactive Advertising Bureau’s Newfronts — where online content providers highlight their new season of upcoming programs to advertisers and others — there were three key takeaways:
- YouTube, the world’s biggest showcase of video micro-targeting in a zillion-channel universe, is now settling into a role of focusing around pop stars as a kind of online MTV, but with a platform for the farm team.
- If brands are still struggling with the question of whether they should wear their social responsibility on their sleeve, several presenters — Meredith Publishing, Group Nine and especially Digitas — are not. Again and again, they pitched the anti-TV idea that young viewers want programming that moves them to do something about the world.
- And, after a couple of sputtering decades, interactive TV is finding its footing with an explosion of creative video ideas, AI-managed ad targeting and multiplatform incarnations that blend together into single, interwoven brands.
Let’s start first with the 800-pound gorilla in this space, YouTube.