At Its NewFronts Pitch, Spectrum Says It Offers ‘the Best of Both Worlds’ By Bridging TV and Digital

Touts its new ad-friendly online tools

Sara Bareilles performed a few songs at the event. Twitter: @DCTweetBounce
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“Thank you for defying our ‘Weather on the 1s’ report to make it here this afternoon,” quipped Spectrum NY1 News morning anchor Pat Kiernan during today’s Spectrum Reach NewFronts presentation at New York’s Edison Hall.

The buckets of rain didn’t dampen the spirit of those in the room as Spectrum Networks’ on-air broadcast talent introduced a number of new ad-friendly products today with the hope of not only keeping advertisers around, but luring more partners into the fold.

One new product the multichannel video programming distributor (MVPD) introduced was the Spectrum Reach Audience app. It’s a linear TV planning tool that uses anonymized subscriber viewing data to target with granular precision specific customer attributes, such as education level or car-ownership information, explained Spectrum NY1 Inside City Hall host Errol Louis.

The app launches in July in New York and L.A., and will hit the company’s other markets by the first quarter of 2018, said Spectrum News 13 anchor Ybeth Bruzual, who left sunny Orlando to be at the presentation.

The Spectrum Reach Digital Dashboard was also introduced. It’s a new planning and reporting tool that gives advertisers one place to view their digital campaigns, and their overall effectiveness. Advertisers can also track leads, customer actions by day, calls and emails, and linear TV reporting via the dashboard.

Kiernan seamlessly anchored the NewFronts presentation, introducing his Spectrum NY1 News colleagues including traffic reporter Jamie Stelter and weekend evening anchor Cheryl Wills, in addition to Louis, as they gave news report-style updates about what Spectrum Reach is doing to keep advertisers happy.

“There are around 360 original scripted shows on television right now, and TV remains the most important marketing platform out there because it has the best content,” said Stelter.

“TV is alive and well,” echoed Kiernan. “When you look at the data more carefully, people are still watching a ton of TV. More than 1,000 minutes per person per week. Young people are still watching television too.”

NBA Hall of Famer James Worthy, now an L.A. Lakers studio analyst for Spectrum SportsNet, spoke about how the company invests in data and technology to create “the best hyper-local news and sports.” Worthy continued, “Spectrum offers regular traffic and weather updates, and it’s the premier source for breaking news.”

Kiernan also introduced singer-songwriter Sara Bareilles, whose Broadway show Waitress is next door at the Brooks Atkinson Theatre. She stopped by to perform a couple of songs.

The company said it’s reinventing the ways audiences are targeted by combining advanced data-driven products, national scale and unmatched local expertise.

“We have every product that nobody in this market really has. We have highly-optimized linear television, we have digital, we have all the streaming apps and VOD,” said Charter Communications evp and president of media sales David Kline. “So what I think what we have done is we have combined the best of both worlds, meaning the power of digital with the power of television, and it’s all powered our set-top box viewership data.”

Spectrum Reach has its work cut out. In a time of mass cord-cutting, not just among young people but people of all ages, new advancements like these are essential if MVPDs want to keep advertisers engaged with the company.

Kline said he is optimistic and believes his company stands out in the MVPD landscape.

“We have a lot of great products here for you, and a great group of people who are dedicated to making sure your marketing needs are met,” said Kline. “I want you to really think about us first when you’re out there with your marketing needs because as you saw today, we have literally every screen covered with the best digital products, the best linear products, and the best data all in the safest environment.”

@ajkatztv A.J. Katz is the senior editor of Adweek's TVNewser.