Digital NewFronts: Spotlight on OTT Advertising

Digital NewFronts: Spotlight on OTT Advertising

Digital NewFronts is an annual event in the advertising industry that showcases digital media companies, publishers, and platforms as they present their upcoming content offerings and advertising opportunities to advertisers, marketers, and media buyers. It is often compared to the television industry’s Upfronts, where television networks present their programming for the upcoming season. Bridget Hall, Group Account Director in the USA covers her main takeaways from the Digital NewFronts this year.

Streaming TV as a channel has undergone enormous changes over the past few years, and as it matures continues to offer significant benefits to those willing to test the channel. After all, according to Kantar, 115.6M U.S. households can be reached via video streaming, which is equivalent to a household penetration of 89% of the market.

“At M&C Saatchi Performance we partner with Roku, Amazon, and many other industry leaders to bring our clients innovative marketing solutions, so naturally, we were excited to see what each of these companies focused on for their roadmap during NewFronts presentations over the past few weeks.” Bridget Hall, Group Account Director.

Here are some trends that performance marketers will be able to take advantage of in the coming months:

Amazon – a 360 approach

Amazon’s Newfronts presentation covered a breadth of both content and the advertising ecosystem including; Amazon Fire TV, Freevee, Twitch, Thursday Night Football, and third-party apps via Amazon Publisher Direct. Amazon reminded the audience that only 14% of organizations have achieved a 360-degree view of their customer according to a recent Gartner study that was published, and teed themselves up as a premier partner to help solve for this.

Amazon DSP, known for its sponsored products ad offering, is heavily reliant on machine learning. They will continue to focus on personalization and relevancy in 2023 and beyond. This personalization is powered by Amazon’s 1st party data across both streaming and shopping ad products. Adding to its arsenal Amazon has partnered with industry leaders like ispot and videoamp to allow cross-channel measurement.

Consumer Packaged Goods and Auto brands can get excited about a few innovations on Amazon’s horizon. For example, Amazon announced that CPG and grocery advertisers can now obtain holistic insights across shopping channels easily and quickly using Omnichannel Metrics (OCM). OCM helps advertisers quantify their ads’ omnichannel outcomes by bringing together ad-attributed engagements online and offline, on and off Amazon.

Lastly, Amazon is extremely proud of its “Thursday Night Football” package that came with a $1 billion price tag. They mentioned the massive reach of the Chargers-Chiefs Thursday Night Football game, which averaged 13.03 million viewers on Amazon Prime (Source: sportsmediawatch). Later this year, the Black Friday NFL game will be offered via streaming to prime members and all. What this means for advertisers is access to a large addressable audience with the opportunity to reach sports enthusiasts with a more efficient buying model compared to linear TV packages.

Roku – expanding the offer

This year Roku led its first NewFronts season as both a streaming platform and a TV manufacturer. The expansion into TV manufacturing has major benefits, including Roku’s ownership of data associated with its TVs. This year Roku is pitching advertisers on more granular measurement for Roku inventory with its Automated Content Recognition. They honed in on four all-new capabilities geared toward brand discoverability.

The four new capabilities from Roku are:

  • Primetime Reach Guarantee opportunity (“RPG”)
    • Roku’s PRG solution provides advertisers a scalable inventory source with the ability to generate reach surpassing the scale of traditional TV.
    • This is an exciting opportunity for advertisers to take over Roku City and appear in one of Roku’s most beloved surfaces.
  • Lifestyle Zones: Sponsorship opportunity within food & home/lifestyle programming
    • Theatrical and Gaming partners will be able to align with premium content in these much-loved genres.
  • New Roku Originals: Exciting content slate fueling Roku Channel 
    • The Roku Channel is continuing to build its slate of premium free ad-supported content to attract new users to the platform.
  • Roku Commerce+: Partnership with 3P retailers/marketplace, including a partnership with Instacart, and upcoming partnerships with VideoAmp and Comscore for campaign measurement.

Advertisers are hungry for more innovative ways to reach consumers with effective advertising campaigns on streaming platforms. Roku and Amazon both came to the table with robust solutions. We see a clear theme with emerging opportunities geared towards commerce and CPG and these verticals continue to fuel the increasing investment YoY in connected TV advertising.


Both Roku and Amazon continue to unveil powerful solutions that cater to advertisers’ hunger for more innovative ways to reach consumers through effective advertising campaigns on streaming TV. Though the streaming TV landscape is complex, with multiple players and partners involved there is a significant opportunity to reach audiences through this increasingly adopted performance medium.

Further Reading

For more information about how we are helping clients prepare, manage and optimize streaming TV campaigns, or to discuss your needs with Bridget and the team.