Tom St. John, who serves as head of partnerships at Beachfront, reveals what products and technologies Beachfront will be showing in its booth at the 2022 NAB Show, which takes place at the Las Vegas Convention Center April 23–27.
What has Beachfront been working on since the last NAB Show?
Tom St. John: At Beachfront, we’ve been focused on solving two key ad monetization challenges facing today’s TV programmers and distributors. First, by enabling greater ad sales automation and interoperability across the convergent TV landscape. And second, by building more advanced advertising infrastructure for the exciting IPTV ecosystem.
To expand on each… TV ads have been bought and sold on a largely manual basis for some time, which has led to mounting inefficiencies and costs. In this fragmented landscape, advertisers are demanding simpler ways to execute cross-screen ad campaigns, while programmers and distributors are seeking more holistic approaches to inventory monetization. To solve these considerations, Beachfront has automated major workflows for cable and broadcast TV media sales through innovative technology.
More specifically, we introduced an industry-first solution to enable set-top box VOD inventory for real-time monetization only a few years ago. And we have since expanded that offering to encompass traditional linear spot TV through integrations with cable headends, broadcast systems, and even smart TV manufacturers. Ultimately, these efforts have enabled our partners to unify monetization of their set-top box and IPTV inventory.
Complementary to these initiatives, we’ve also built advanced advertising infrastructure to support the rapidly-growing IPTV ecosystem through our Unified Decisioning product. As IP-based viewing continues to rise, it’s become evident that the ad tech used in digital video environments is not suited to meet the tenets of premium television. As such, we’ve spent a lot of time developing technology to solve key considerations for media owners who are making the jump into IPTV.
To give some examples, we provide partners with the ability to service direct-sold deals alongside programmatic, uphold competitive separation agreements, extensively review creatives prior to rotation, and more. Today, leading media owners, programmers, and distributors choose our advanced Convergent TV Monetization Platform to holistically manage and monetize their advertising inventory across TV platforms.
What products or product categories is Beachfront highlighting at the 2022 NAB Show?
TSJ: We’re most excited to showcase our Ad Server and Unified Decisioning technology. As core components of our Convergent TV Monetization Platform, these SaaS-based ad tech and media sales offerings are used by several TV programmers and content owners. Our clients leverage these products to unify their ad serving across traditional and IPTV environments, and to complement their direct-sold deals with an automated sales channel.
The results that our partners have achieved using this technology have been very promising. As an example, several programmers use our Ad Server today to service their direct-sold deals in both connected TV and set-top box environments. This unification brings greater efficiency to their revenue operations.
As a second example, an IPTV service recently used our Unified Decisioning product to bolster their inventory monetization amid organic growth. In doing so, the service drove significant increases in both fill and revenue, even after accounting for traffic fluctuations. And these are just some of the initial results we’re seeing.
Our team is eager to meet with both prospective and existing partners at the 2022 NAB Show, to further explore how our technology can help to simplify operations and unlock new revenue streams.
What recent technology developments do you think are the most exciting for the media and entertainment industry?
TSJ: Within the media and entertainment industry, one of the more pronounced (and perhaps obvious) trends we’re keeping a close eye on is the continued rise of IP-based viewing. Consumers are flocking to streaming platforms, and this is opening up a lot of untapped revenue opportunities for media sellers who have historically operated in cable and broadcast environments. We’ve seen a number of programmers and MVPDs start to maintain ad-supported offerings that span multiple ecosystems, as they look to meet consumers where they are spending their time. It’s become clear that while IP-based viewing is on the rise, traditional TV is not going away anytime soon. Media sellers will need to manage a strong presence in both mediums to drive success and future-proof their businesses. While these evolving developments can seem disruptive, we’re really excited about the opportunities they present to our partners, with whom we’ll continue to navigate these changing dynamics.
About Tom St. John
Tom St. John is a media and advertising veteran with more than 15 years of experience driving key partnership and innovation initiatives at leading technology companies — all focused on monetization. In his current role with Beachfront, Tom serves as the Head of Partnerships, where he manages the Client Services team and collaborates with key ecosystem partners to deliver innovative monetization solutions to TV programmers and distributors. Before joining Beachfront, Tom spent a number of years with Criteo and Eyeview (acquired by Aki), and in various leadership, operational, and business development roles.
Beachfront is the convergent TV advertising platform that enables unified ad decisioning and monetization across connected TV (CTV), set-top box video-on-demand (VOD), linear, and national addressable television. Leading media owners, programmers, and distributors such as AMC, VIZIO, Newsy, Stadium, Frontier, Philo, and Xumo leverage Beachfront’s TV-first tech stack to maximize revenue and improve operational efficiency, while delivering best-in-class ad experiences to their audiences. Founded in 2007, Beachfront is an independent, private equity-backed company based in New York City. Learn more at beachfront.com.