Wurl CEO Sean Doherty talks about innovative TV ad

Streaming services like Netflix and Hulu are becoming more and more popular as alternatives to traditional linear TV these days, but that doesn’t mean streamers don’t have to fight for viewers.

“They have this problem,” Wurl CEO Sean Doherty told the Variety Wurl Sponsored Entertainment & Tech Summit. “How to do [they] to acquire and reach viewers profitably? “

Wurl is a marketing and technology company that helps media companies get the most out of the money they spend on advertising. The company recently launched a service, called Perform, which helps platforms place promotional spots for shows in front of viewers most likely to click “subscribe”.

“[Advertising] everything should be measurable and everything should be able to be targeted, ”he said. “When you have a lot of data on who your viewers are, it’s pretty easy with machine learning. [and] artificial intelligence to understand [which] Internet users are likely to become passionate viewers who are loyal to the service. The product we’re announcing today, Perform, revolves around two things. [First,] target promotional ads very specifically to people who may be interested in that content and not just everyone. And second, to accurately measure the results of that.

Doherty explained that although this is new technology, Wurl developed it using conventional methods.

“It’s pretty old-school, but we listened to our customers first,” he said. “As their streaming business matured, they discovered these issues. Their marketing managers realized, “How are we going to find and acquire new viewers? How are we going to hold them back? How are we going to prevent them from churning? This was the start of the idea. And we’re a very data-driven company. We collect a lot of data, billions and billions of information on behalf of our customers. We have a lot of data scientists and they started experimenting with the data that we were collecting.

Beyond the churn rate, Doherty also explained conversation rate, something Wurl focused on for a while. He said that often advertising is measured with “spray and prayer technology” – businesses spend money on advertising and notice how many customers they get, but have no idea how much. of their activity resulting directly from their advertising. In contrast, Wurl is able to track when a person views an ad and whether they have been “converted” to a viewer or subscriber of the advertised content.

“It’s the Internet now. It’s streaming. It is not shown on television; it’s a two-way network, ”Doherty said. “There is a lot, a lot of data that our company is responsible for providing to these customers about their streaming, their audience and their growth. So we thought we could use this same data to measure the results of the promotions we put in front of people. [and] measure the conversion very accurately. And then report that to our customers to let them know how effective these promotions are. [It’s] quite remarkable in itself. You can really measure [the effectiveness of advertising] for the first time.”

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