September Industry Insights

September 27, 2018

From rising prices in the streaming sphere to biases at leading companies, our industry is reaching an inflection point. So, while some of us are trading summer for fall and cold brew for lattes, the industry is preparing for quickly approaching shifts that are certain to be far more interesting. Just look to the September news circuit for a preview of what’s to come.

1. WSJ: Cord-Cutters Beware: Streaming TV Prices Are Marching Higher

We moved the price up and, being a very price-sensitive market, we fully expected to see a considerable number of customers drop off,” AT&T DirecTV Now’s Chief Executive Randall Stephenson said in an interview Wednesday. “We haven’t seen that. The consumers, it’s obvious that they’re finding value in the platform.”

Originally, much of the excitement around streaming TV options stemmed from the value they provided. You could access a good deal of content at a price that was significantly cheaper than that of cable TV. That said, as the popularity of streaming continues to grow, so too does its price.

Yet, whether those price increases are a result of additional content or due to the types of content they include (live sports, for example), new customers have not been deterred. In fact, the streaming subscriber pool is expected to grow to more than 9 million by the end of this year. And by 2022, in a mere 4-year time span, that number is predicted to hit 24 million streaming subscribers, a 166% increase. So, while cord-cutting used to be the quick fix for those looking to save money, streaming options today are increasingly earning a permanent spot in consumers’ every-day budgets.

2. Mediapost: U.S. Marketers To Spend $15 Billion On Data In 2019

“ — the data arm of the Cloud Technologies Group, which focuses on data analytics — released a report titled Global Data Market Size 2017-2019, which highlights the growth rate of worldwide data purchases in 23 markets. The data suggests the U.S. will retain its No. 1 position in 2018, reaching $15 billion by next year.”

Despite the effects of GDPR, global advertising spend on data is on the rise. And that increase is due in large part to the growth of global programmatic budgets. After all, the value of programmatic technology lies in its reliance on data to deliver relevant ads across connected devices. So, as brands continue to invest more of their budget in digital data, we look forward to better advertising across the board.

3. NYTimes: Here’s the Conversation We Really Need to Have About Bias at Google

… you come upon a set of uncomfortable facts — uncomfortable for Google and for society, because they highlight how in thrall we are to this single company, and how few checks we have against the many unseen ways it is influencing global discourse… Some of Google’s rivals charge that the company favors its own properties in its search results over those of third-party sites — for instance, how it highlights Google’s local reviews instead of Yelp’s in response to local search queries.”

Think about where the world of real estate would be if agents were allowed to represent both home buyers and sellers. Baffling, right? It would be nearly impossible for one person to fairly represent the best interests of two opposing parties. Similarly, in advertising, this sort of conflict of interest can exist in the form of companies that both buy and sell digital media.

It’s possible that demand-side platforms that double as supply-side platforms might prioritize spend within their own platforms, even if it’s not in their clients’ best interest. Needless to say, now is an intriguing time to see how the industry is affected as a result.

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