Robert Eckelman: Streaming Service Advertising with ConnectAD TV
Is your viewing experience lackluster?
Robert Eckelman is the founder and CEO of ConnectADtv.
Connected TV (CTV) is television that can be connected to the internet and access content other than cable. Examples of this are Amazon Fire Stick, Roku, Chromecast, and any SMART TV’s.
ConnectADtv delivers live and on-demand content from a programmer to a viewer and has access to top-tier providers and is available on supported devices.
Learn more about how ConnectADtv can enhance your television viewing experience by listening to this episode of The Thoughtful Entrepreneur above and don’t forget to subscribe on Apple Podcasts – Stitcher – Spotify –Google Play –Castbox – TuneIn – RSS.
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Welcome to the thoughtful entrepreneur Show. I'm Josh Elledge, founder and CEO of up my influence.com. We turn entrepreneurs into media celebrities, grow their authority, and help them build partnerships with top influencers. We believe that every person has a unique message that can positively impact the world. stick around to the end of the show, where I'll reveal how you can be our next guest on one of the fastest growing daily inspiration podcasts on the planet in 15 to 20 minutes. Let's go. All right, Robert Eckelman, you are the founder and CEO of ConnectAD TV. I'm really excited to have this conversation, you are in a very, very cool space. And that space is, you know, everything that we're streaming are streaming entertainment, you know, talking about all the platforms that exist out there, all the streaming content providers, entertainment providers. There have to monetize that. I mean, they, obviously the business. And at the same time, you know, you have all these brands companies want to get in front of audiences. And audiences, as, as everybody knows, have moved away from or are in the process of moving away from traditional broadcast. And they're going to all of these streaming platforms. So what a great place for you have for you to have moved into.
Yeah, no doubt. Listen, I started in this space in 2016. So it doesn't seem like that long ago. But 2015 it didn't exist. So the beginning, and it is amazing how fast is growing. I will tell you, it's growing so fast, that it's actually become almost generic. And here's what I mean by that. In the business, we call it connected TV or Ott over the top, but when I look at people And they say, what do you do? I'll tell them I'm in the connected TV business. And they look at me with a blank stare. And I'll say, Well, how do you watch TV? Like, well, I watch Hulu, like, right? You're watching over the top. So it's grown so fast. People don't even know they're watching it. They don't distinguish between regular TV and over the top TV. But there's a huge distinction and savvy marketers and advertisers take great advantage of it.
Yeah, so. So So what would so explain exactly what ConnectAD TV to where do you fit in all of this then?
So I'm in the business of placing, managing, monitoring and optimizing connected TV for my clients. So I work with advertising agencies to get their clients up and running on connected TV. I work with direct clients to get them up and running on connected TV. And it's very unique because every client gets a customized schedule. And when I say customized schedule, I don't mean Everybody spend is different. Everybody's geographic is different, right? So I can pinpoint zip codes. When I sit down with an auto dealer, we may look at their zip list and find out where they're selling cars. That's exactly where we target. And when we build not only a geographic area for a auto dealership, or you can fill in the blank, it could be for a bank, it could be for a hospital. But not only do we build a geographic area custom to their needs, then we start looking at their profile. So if I'm building a schedule for a Mercedes dealer, not only do I want an active Mercedes buyer, but I want someone in the market for a luxury vehicle that has the income and the need, I may look at luxury leads lease is expiring, or I may just look at income levels. I may look at their past vehicle purchase, but there's so much data we can utilize to finally target advertising. And then the unique thing is not only do we show it on the TV We get to see the statistics digitally in Google Analytics and other analytics. And then we start to target all of their other devices, like their cell phones, desktops and tablets.
So my gosh, in terms of advantages for a company that wants to reach their target audience, there are I mean, you just don't have to waste as much money advertising to the wrong people. You can hone it in on exactly who you want to reach. What an exciting world that is, for advertisers.
You know, this is what I say to my clients. First of all, I've been in advertising in broadcast for 32 years. This completely refreshed, revitalized my career. got me excited, and people laugh at me. I'm so excited. I'm like a run on sentence because I care about what connected TV does. No, it's not the only thing In the world, I don't tell my clients don't do broadcast or don't do cable. What I do say is a portion of your budget needs to be on connected TV, because it's the same thing as regular TV only better. It's connected to the internet so we can highly target. And then we can optimize by looking at the results and making adjustments.
So with give me some ideas, you mentioned Hulu, what are some other platforms that I could I could use to get in front of my audience that that you have expertise in? Yeah, so where's the inventory?
Yeah, no, no, great question. So we need to back up and look, there are basically three types of connected TV or Ott, there's a subscription based model, and most people are going to be familiar with that. That would be Netflix. Currently, they don't carry advertising. I hope they do in the future. And I'm predicting they will, who knows, the CEO was said they never will, but Nevers a long time. They never do until they do. There's also the hybrid based model, a hybrid based model would be things like Hulu, you pay subscription, but you also get commercials. Then there's the pure play model. A pure play would be things like Pluto. And crackle. crackle is owned by Sony, and you don't pay a subscription. You just sign up download the app, and you can watch it on your smart TV. So when you ask where the inventory is, there's things called thin bundles. Thin bundle basically gives you like the top 40 cable channels. It's offered by Hulu, by YouTube, direct tv now, there are many providers of thin bundles Sling TV, and I get advertising on those. I also work directly with pure plays such as Pluto and crackle. And we have plenty of inventory on there and clients are really happy inventory has not been a problem.
I can't imagine, especially when you're talking about money retargeting to geography as well. So, you know, and again, I think what's exciting for me as a brand is that you know it, let's say before I just wanted to, I was just going to advertise the nine o'clock hour in my local news station. You know, I'm going to be advertising to a bunch of people that they're not interested in my product or service. I mean, you know that there might be in the nine o'clock hour might skew a little bit more toward who I want, but you know, it's wasted money, you know, when I can narrow it down to exactly who I want, and so I can, the future Robert here is so exciting, because there's going to be so many millions of people that are going to continue to consume more and more and more content on these streaming platforms. You know, I wish we had a crystal ball We could see exactly what it looks like in three years. But if you were to break out your crystal ball, what what kind of things do you imagine, than just more or bigger audiences? What do you think we're going to be seeing in three years?
Yeah, so let me address two things. First, you were saying when you do regular TV, you're just advertising it. And there's a lot of audiences right. So So basically, the old way of buying you used to buy a platform and a program. So you would buy NBC in the today show. And what you would do is you would hope your audience that needed a car was it in part watching right? Now, the new way is, everything is customer centric. So all you only buy audience is made up of your best prospects. And the reason why I went back and told you that is because more data is coming. Better data is coming. So when you talk about the future, we're only going to be able to target better in addition to being able to target better we We'll start serving dynamic ads. So I'll give you a perfect example. Right now I'm working with a company that if I'm working with a car dealer, their TV or their connected TV commercial will actually every 24 hours, scrape their website and bring up fresh inventory. So without anybody producing a new commercial, fresh inventory will be in that ad. And that ad will be targeted toward the people wanting to buy that product. So fresh. Nissan's will come up to someone who has identified themselves as in the market for Nissan. So that's coming. It's really cool. The other thing that I think is going to become very big is ACR. ACR is automatic content recognition. Basically, that's going to be on sets and they know to the second what you're watching what you're consuming, and there's just going to be more attribution, better attribution, going forward and the future is exciting. Who winds up when This race, nobody knows
it. And so if I'm a business owner, and I'm saying I'm already advertising on Google, I'm advertising on Facebook. What are some of the advantages to advertising on connected platforms? Or, you know, I don't know what the Ott is, is that the term that we should use to kind of broadly talk about where, where where you manage?
Yeah, you can use that I like to say connected TV because everything I do starts with the TV there. There are a lot of peace. People in the space who define Ott is running on your smartphones and on your tablets. And that's really not the way the ratings council defines it. They defined it as running on your TV. So to avoid any confusion, I like to say CTV connected TV. I do retargeting other devices, but for purposes of this conversation, I would say TV And the huge advantages are this Listen, if you want to drive emotion if you want to drive purchase, if you want to drive awareness video is the most powerful medium you can. The beauty of connected TV is those ads not only run to a targeted audience, but they're non skippable. Imagine that you can't pick up the remote and change the channel. I know you're in the market for a car and I'm serving an ad that you have to watch to 100% completion
what what kind of companies are there? Are there companies that I mean I'm just thinking of like my own brand I you know, I'm looking to reach out to a business owners that are looking for more visibility in the eye and do we manage a lot of influencer connections so I mean, that's a pretty specific be to be kind of audience that we're interested in reaching. Are there is there inventory for someone like us
Yeah, there's inventory for everybody, you know, anyone I work with, we sit down and we do a comprehensive look at their business. We look at their SWAT strengths, weaknesses and opportunities and then come up plan. But if you're asking what industries Look, I've been in the local space my entire career, and right in the local space, if you're not serving auto, financial, Legal Health, grocery, then you're missing your market. Right? categories is where I specialize. Yeah, financial, Legal Health, grocery, and it expands from there, but that that's the core.
So clearly, if anyone is in any of those categories, you'd want to go to connect, add tv.com so that's Connect ad TV. com and Robert they'd get in touch with you there. And and you can kind of go through All of this with them to kind of share some of the opportunity. How is the How are the rates right now? Are there? I mean, in terms of someone that's used to Google advertising versus advertising on streaming platforms? Is it more expensive, less expensive than Google AdWords generally?
Yeah, I would have to say it's more expensive, but that depends on the category. Right? If you hurry and you're doing pay per click advertising, your clicks could cost you 100 bucks, literally, um, but But listen, it's very different, right. So Google advertising typically is a very bottom of the funnel activity. And the challenge is if you're not filling the top of the funnel, that bottom gets very narrow. Right And the nice thing about connected TV and the way we target if we're targeting in market, we're about the middle of the funnel. And because we retargeting on clickable devices, we also reach bottom of the funnel. I might be getting a Little bit broad here and I'll slow it down. But the answer is, it's very difficult to say well, how do I price a cost per click versus a commercial that you have to watch for 30 seconds, you know, clicks, they click in there on
and connected TV just has more staying power, more influence. So it's very different. I think it's very effective. Particularly because we're reaching specific markets in a space you Am I advertisers tend to love it.
Now, last question, Robert, how does broadcast survive and in its environment, what do they do or how do they evolve?
So there's there's two things First of all, every broadcast station is ready trying to sell it. They really are. They just sell a very different than me. They're kind of a more opaque me I open up my system, my client see everything I do anything. I see my client. See But the truth is there's something called TV 3.0 that is going to come out soon. And the differences, you know, years ago, we used to watch analog TV, then we went to digital TV, then we'll let the high definition TV. And you know, the viewing experience has gotten better. When we go to the TV three point O, supposedly, you'll be able to have a two way street. In other words, the broadcaster will be able to send you a signal, but a signal will also go back to them. So a lot of the advantages that I currently have in Ott will probably come to broadcast. The key difference is, if I'm a broadcaster of CBS or NBC, I'll still have my CBS or NBC programming, doing what I do, I can get any type of programming for I have 130 hundred and 40 different inventory sources that I utilize. So I'm not limited to one network or one channel. I don't want Because I don't care what they're watching, I only care that they have purchase intent that my advertisers need to reach. So again, I'm very audience centric, not platform or customer or program centric.
Nice. Nice. Well, great. Well, Robert, I want to thank you so much for joining us, Robert Eckelman. You are the founder and CEO of ConnectAD TV. Again, that's Connect ad tv.com. And, you know, everybody's watching streaming entertainment. And if you want to get in front of all of those audiences, then Robert sounds like he's your guy. So Robert, thank you so much. Thanks for listening to the thoughtful entrepreneur show. If you are a thoughtful business owner or professional who would like to be on this daily program, please visit up my influence.com slash guest that we've got something out this interview, would you share this episode on social media? Just do a quick screenshot with your phone and text it to a friend or posted on the socials. A few do that tag us with the hashtag up my influence. Each month we scour Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook and Instagram. We pick one winner from each platform, and you get crowned king or queen of that social media now what do you win? We're going to promote you and your business to over 120,000 social media fans totally free. Now. Can you also hook us up now in your podcast player right now? Please give us a thumbs up or a rating and review. We promise to read it all and take action. We believe that every person has a message that can positively impact the world. Your feedback helps us fulfill that mission. And while you're at it, hit that subscribe button. You know why tomorrow? That's right. seven days a week, you are going to be inspired and motivated to succeed 15 minutes a day. My name is Josh Elledge. Let's connect on the socials, you'll find all the stuff we're doing at up my influence.com Thanks for listening and thank you for being a part of the thoughtful entrepreneur movement.