Case Studies

A Year of Challenge, Adaptation & Growth

By: FreeWheel Council for Premium Video

2020 was one for the history books. From the global pandemic to social injustice and unrest, historic elections and more, the year was filled with highs, lows and plenty of uncertainty. Regardless, premium video consumption was on the rise pre-global pandemic, then the effects of stay-at-home orders and other pandemic affects sped up premium video viewing growth.

The growth in video viewing was welcome but required teams to be adaptable and innovative. For Sean Robertson, Director of Partnerships at DISH Media, “flexibility and adaptability will remain critically important in 2021, not just from [our] teams but also from technology platforms.” Adding, “continuing to focus on flexible, connected systems that unify TV and digital will enable Dish Media and the TV industry at large to navigate through the evolving changes (both expected and unexpected).”

As viewers watched video content in higher numbers—and across a myriad of platforms—content providers gave audiences critical news and information as well as much-needed entertainment and content during a troubled year. Lee Barstow, Vice President of Revenue Operations at A+E Networks puts his bets on partnership in order to continue reaching audiences effectively. “We survived and thrived in 2020 and will continue with the new normal of video distanced collaboration to create stronger partnerships in product development, operational execution and marketplace development. This is especially relevant in the exploding CTV space where consumption continues to grow exponentially and drive advanced solutions for our advertisers.”

For many in the publisher space, continued growth is predicted, yet “2021 is an important step towards even more digitality,” says Andreas Diwisch, Director of Market Experts at Seven.One Entertainment Group (GmbH). He adds, “the boundaries between linear and digital products are to be continuously removed in order to enable total video campaigns, offering aggregated audience potential. For this purpose, we invest in the important capabilities: measurability and targeting precision. We plan to deliver, measure and report video advertising at the same quality level as TV in the first quarter of 2021.”

Like Diwisch mentioned, the shift to more digital content delivery is clear and has accelerated this past year to follow the change in consumer behavior and consumption. The premium video ecosystem is poised to continue its growth by bridging the TV/digital divide and deliver on advertisers’ objectives with greater data, more precise targeting and new measurement and attribution to prove efficiency. 2021 will be the year of advanced TV as TV will demonstrate its ability to maximize impact and relevance to marketer.

But for now, take a look back at some of the TV industry’s major events and highlights from the premium video publisher lens: