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GroupM creates ad innovation accelerator

Jan 4, 2024
Illustration of a television with $100 bill on the TV screen

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

Ad agency GroupM has launched an accelerator to help TV advertisers and publishers invest in formats beyond 30-second commercials.

Why it matters: The investment is an effort to move more ad dollars into the creative formats that some streaming platforms have offered for years and inspire new options.

Details: Launch participants include companies behind some of the biggest streaming platforms like Disney, NBCUniversal, Roku and YouTube, along with ad tech companies like Brightline and KERV. Free TV hardware startup Telly is also involved.

  • These companies already offer some creative formats like ads in Roku's screen saver Roku City and shoppable ads on NBCUniversal's Peacock.
  • But the accelerator's goal is to expand that work with better planning and measurement, GroupM's executive director, investment innovation Mike Fisher says.
  • GroupM plans to host quarterly meetings and launch pilot programs with some of the agency’s clients in early 2024.

Context: The TV industry seeks to financially benefit from new ad formats as more viewership shifts from linear to streaming. And with streaming services getting pricier, more consumers are likely to opt for cheaper ad-supported plans.

  • Connected TV ad revenue is expected to grow 14.9% in North America in 2024, up from 9.4% the prior year, according to GroupM's end-of-year forecast.
  • "The scale is there," Fisher says. "But the scale in streaming comes from the traditional 30-second ad. ... We have a once-in-a-generation opportunity to redefine what success looks like on that [TV] screen."

What's next: The accelerator will start in North America and expand to other markets throughout the year.

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