WarnerMedia’s Brad Wilson, Disney’s Julie DeTraglia & More: The Growing Business of Connected TV

Variety NY digital editor Todd Spangler led a panel of industry leaders to discuss the expanding market of connected TV for the Variety Entertainment Summit, in partnership with CES 2021.

The speakers included Scott Brown, general manager of audience measurement at Nielsen; Hayley Diamond, EVP of digital investment and partnerships at Publicis; Ricardo Rivera, global digital group director at OMD USA; Audrey Steele, EVP of research insights and strategy at Fox Corp.; Brad Wilson, EVP of growth and revenue at WarnerMedia; and Julie DeTraglia, SVP of research and insights at Disney Media & Entertainment Distribution.

I think the biggest change [over the past year] was the advertising marketplace paying a lot more attention to streaming overall,” remarked DeTraglia on the changing tides of connected TV offerings.

“But when it became really clear and got covered a lot in the press about behaviors at home and people watching, more of all kinds of TV in general, and certainly a lot of growth in streaming and ad-supported streaming and free streaming, I think it sort of got people thinking at a time when they needed to figure out new ways to reach people and in different ways with different messages,” she followed.

“Dynamic ad insertion allows for a lot more creativity in messaging. So I think that was just an acceleration of all that and some extra attention paid in general,” she concluded.”

Brown highlighted the uptick in connected TV usage by the consumer since the start of the pandemic. “When you look at 2021 in January, right up against around 80% of all households in America either have a smart TV or a connected device that allows them to get connected,” he pointed out.

Once you have that infrastructure in place, then the possibilities for consumers are endless,” he continued. “You can try new services and find content that resonates.”