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OMD’s Ben Winkler: No ‘Us Versus Them,’ Advertisers Need Many Video Options

CANNES – OMD’s Chief Investment Officer welcomes a warming of the discourse between traditional TV content providers and their digital counterparts. Not only does it reflect reality, embracing both is the only way for advertisers to meet their business objectives, says Ben Winkler.

In this interview with Beet.TV, Winkler mentions a conversation he had onstage with NBCUniversal sales chief Linda Yaccarino during the the FreeWheel/Beet.TV forum hosted by Comcast. He says her call for an agnostic approach to media selection strikes a chord of harmony.

“It’s great to talk to Linda. What’s especially heartening is I think that she and the industry as a whole lower your temperature a little bit around the us versus them, traditional versus digital,” Winkler says in this interview with Beet.TV.

From the beginning of the digital era, people like Winkler found it challenging when broadcast networks “would come out and say digital has garbage content,” Winkler recalls. Paradoxically, some of the same networks would then implore buyers to patronize digital companies in which the networks had invested.

“The reality is any advertiser to succeed needs a nice mix of different types of media,” says Winkler. “You simply cannot deliver on your business objectives if you just pick a single medium.”

He adds that it’s “nice to see that Linda is embracing that idea of a portfolio approach, NBCU being a big part of that. Certainly they deliver fantastic content.”

OMD’s clients “have an insatiable appetite” for video content, according to Winkler. “When I say video content, I don’t mean tiny videos with no sound that are watched for 1.8 seconds. We’re talking about the full commercial experience.”

Beyond traditional TV, there are few places where brands can indulge in “the full commercial experience,” he adds. “Strangely enough, Snapchat is one of those places and it’s good to see that Linda and NBC have invested in that as well.”

Outside of “the video paradigm,” brands also need platforms like Facebook to reach audiences at scale. “You get great data, remarkable targeting with very little waste,” Winkler says.

As with any medium there are challenges. “But at the risk of saying something obvious, you have to spread the wealth when it comes to media planning because it’s the only way to deliver your business objectives.”

This video is from The New TV Ecosystem Forum at Cannes Lions 2017, presented by FreeWheel. For more from the series, please visit this page.