The Speed of Culture Podcast: Roku's New Full-Funnel Approach

Dan Robbins, vp of marketing and partner solutions, on the role of advertising in streaming

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One in three homes in the U.S. has pivoted from paid TV to streaming over the past decade. With cable subscriptions on the decline, streaming is the future.

On the latest episode of The Speed of Culture podcast, Dan Robbins, vp of marketing and partner solutions at Roku, joins Suzy founder and CEO Matt Britton to discuss the rise of TV streaming services, the role of advertising in streaming, and how Roku boosts ecommerce through its partnership with Walmart.

In his role, Robbins lead Roku’s marketing, research, analytics, events, design and branded content strategies. Before Roku, he worked on several strategic partnerships and product rollouts at Nielsen. Robbins was also named on the 2018 Broadcasting & Cable 40 Under 40 list, the 2019 GRIT Future list and the 2019 Fellows Program at the Economic Club of New York.

Stream the new episode below, listen and subscribe on Apple Podcasts or find it on Spotify.

Key Takeaways:

  • 02:03 – 03:09 – From Traditional to Streaming TV – Roku was founded almost 20 years ago with a vision that all TV and TV ads would be streamed. The company began building original players and sticks that helped people watch movies and TV over the internet. Roku then expanded by manufacturing its own TVs and launching the Roku Channel.
  • 03:09 – 04:16 – Better TV for Everyone – Roku’s mission is “better TV for everyone.” In television, the name of the game is ease, choice and convenience. Roku’s goal has always been to connect the consumer, the content owner and the advertiser on one platform. That has helped the brand become the No. 1 TV streaming platform in the U.S., Canada, Mexico and, increasingly, worldwide.
  • 08:14 – 11:08 – Going Beyond the 30-Second Spot – Roku uses data and deep insights to tailor individual streaming journeys for its user base. Roku is moving beyond the traditional 15- and 30-second spots by creating interactive and shoppable ads to make TV as easy to shop as social media feeds. It started by launching shoppable ads with Walmart. Now, Roku is expanding with built-for-streaming entertainment through the capabilities of the Roku Brand Studio. An example of this is Roku Recommends, hosted by Maria Menounos and Andrew Hawkins, a weekly show highlighting the best bets on the Roku platform—with partnership opportunities for brands. 
  • 18:23 – 19:20 – Sports Is Big Business on Roku – In an effort to make all TV streamable, Roku has made its way into sports. The brand recently launched Sports Zone. Designed to make sports streaming easy to find for consumers, the service pulls all the sporting events on the platform together. The brand also recently launched a Roku Original show with Rich Eisen on sports to help drive viewership to the sporting content. 
  • 22 – 23:13 – Roku Discovery on the Cutting Edge of New Services – Roku’s discovery initiative makes it easy to find content on the platform. Its Featured Free discovery experience helps consumers find and access all free content on the platform. Buzz allows studios and talent to share customized content.