Given the tough business challenges of IPTV, especially for smaller service providers, incremental revenue of any type is highly desired. One revenue opportunity that holds promise is local advertising.
This advertising revenue may not make or break an IPTV business model, but every little bit helps. The upcoming political season will surely tilt the advertising revenue opportunity favorably.
The ability to insert ads into an IPTV network has always been available, but historically, it’s been reserved for larger service providers. The cost of the equipment and licensing necessary to insert IP enabled digital streams has put it out of reach for many smaller carriers. Digital Adware LLC thinks they may have solved that problem and as a result, put local ad insertion within reach for smaller IPTV players.
Digital Adware, a subsidiary of local ad service veteran Prime Media Productions, has developed a digital ad inserter capable of SD and HD feeds for both small IPTV and digital cable providers. They believe they’ve solved the local ad insertion problem for these smaller players because they claim the equipment price point is now at a level that makes business sense for these smaller video carriers.
“We’ve been looking for a digital solution for our clients for some time, but couldn’t find one that fit for these smaller service providers” Prime Media Productions president Walter Staniszewski tells me. “We decided to develop it ourselves.”
Their new platform is software driven and can facilitate either MPEG-2 or MPEG-4 video. The platform manages its own splicing and multiplexing functions, allowing a service provider to insert ads on local broadcast, cable network, and even their own local content channels.
The system has been deployed at West Carolina Tel, a South Carolina based IPTV provider and at Shentel, a Virginia based digital cable provider. Many others are now in the pipeline according to Digital Adware President Brian Stuart.
For now, Digital Adware is focused on the tried and proven method of good old 30 second TV ad spots. They’re keeping their eye on the emerging interactive advertising trend, but Staniszewski tells me he thinks there is a little “smoke and mirrors” feel to that trend for right now. “I’m not sure anyone has figured out how you actually make money on that stuff,” he says.