LA Times: As streaming video grows, TV networks fight to keep their share of upfront ad dollars

By Stephen Battaglio and Meg James

Excerpt:

Jason Maltby, president and co-executive director of national broadcast TV at the media buying firm Mindshare, expects the networks to repeat last year’s strategy of exploiting advertisers’ fears about seeing their commercials run next to a video that is potentially offensive or carries a politically provocative message.

“TV is inherently brand safe,” Maltby said. “You know exactly what piece of content you’re going to run in before it runs. There’s no guesswork, particularly when you’re buying prime time.”

“It needs to be proven out,” Maltby said. “If there are two pieces of video content and both get a million people, and one has five messages instead of 10, does the one with five actually drive more sales? That’s what advertisers care about.”

Maltby, however, said he would prefer that network programmers replenish their shelves with new titles.

“The shows that have resonated the most in the past two years are the ones that are most distinct,” Maltby noted. “They are not copycats of anything else.”

Read the full article in the LA Times.