OTT/Streaming Viewership Data as the Next Big Thing : A Q&A with William Gorfein, Founder of PeerLogix


 Adotas presents a Q&A with William Gorfein, Founder of OTT/Streaming Audience Discovery Platform, PeerLogix to discuss insights into the growing usage and value of OTT Viewership Data.   


Everyone is talking about the growth of OTT/Streaming content. What statistic or anecdote do you feel makes the argument most vividly?

I read a recent eMarketer report that addressed this topic and was struck by two things, actually:

  1. Nearly 765 million people worldwide will have used a subscription over-the-top (OTT) video service at least once per month in 2018, according to our latest forecast. For some perspective, that total represents 10.2% of the global population and almost one-third of digital video viewers worldwide.
  2. This year, Hulu’s US ad revenues will increase by more than 13% to reach $1.12 billion. Perhaps even more impressive, the platform’s junior competitor, Roku, has US ad revenues that will surpass $293 million in 2018, up 93.0% over 2017.

Combine these stats and you really begin to see a picture of huge adoption coupled with massive upside. That excites me about the role that high quality and well-delivered OTT viewership will play in the next big evolution of digital media audience discovery and targeting.

What are some reasons it is growing so rapidly?

Certainly, the entire ‘cord-cutting’ movement is fueled by developments in technology. The ability to consume the content you choose, when and where you chose to consume it, is a powerful promise and the prevalence of connected devices has truly delivered on that promise.

Having said that, two things that I believe are really pushing OTT growth from the inside are the meteor-like proliferation of live streaming services and the general uptick in television series popularity across OTT platforms. In many ways, consumers are increasingly migrating to streaming services as their primary means to watch everyday TV shows.  In the face of this kind of user migration, it only makes sense to explore how audience targeting might evolve alongside it.

What challenges/opportunities does OTT Growth pose for Advertisers?

The trend away from linear TV has reached a critical mass and is only going to grow, especially as technology continues to evolve even further. And now, faced with this loss of a growing portion of the targetable TV audience, advertisers are left seeking a trusted method of rediscovering and reunifying the fragmented and fractured TV landscape.

If we apply a ‘linear’ (pun intended) way of solving the problem, the most straightforward way to add these cord-cutters back into the advertising mix is to think of this new fully digital method of consuming content as a literal extension of linear television and to target them in the same way we have targeted them on linear TV, by serving a standard video ad inside the OTT commercial pods. And that is certainly happening… SpotX, for example, a leading video ad serving platform, reported they saw an 18x increase in global OTT ad spend in 2017.  The percentage of ad budgets allocated to OTT advertising raised from 8% to over 26% in just one year.

But what if we take the opportunity to leverage the realities of these new consumption habits, rather than simply ignoring them?

You see, these increasingly connected/digital consumption habits come with the built-in side-effect of creating collectible bread-crumb trails of data that can be collected, cataloged analyzed and then targeted across the digital programmatic media landscape.

When combined with traditional television viewership data, these rich ‘Over-the-Top’ (OTT) TV data segments allow advertisers to reach a more reunified and holistic TV viewing audience, with the added ability to creatively define micro-audiences as never before.

How does an OTT/Streaming data company create value around its data?

At PeerLogix, for example, we capture real-time OTT viewership data from more than 180 million households. We then catalog and analyze proprietary markers that identify key content information points (title, genre, actor/actress, production studio, time of viewing, etc…), tie viewership information to IP addresses, enhance the data sets with information from both licensed and publicly available databases, and package and sell that data to partners representing both demand and supply sides of the industry, as well as  data management and analytics partners.

 What are some factors to consider in choosing an OTT Data Provider?

Granularity – While some OTT data providers are only able to offer data set classifications by genre of content consumed, those with better tech platforms should be able to offer data granularity down to studio/network and actor/actress levels.

Deterministic vs probabilistic data – ‘Deterministic’ OTT data sets are those where 100% of the targetable members of a collected audience segment have actually streamed and viewed the content being associated with the set. Less valuable are those ‘probabilistic’ sets, created from a mix of actual viewers and those thought to share similar characteristics to those have actually viewed targeted content.

Amplified vs non-amplified – Highest quality data sets are ‘non-amplified,’ those that can deliver actual viewers at scale – usually from observation from directly within the content stream. Providers that collect data from software insertion in OTT boxes/devices usually cannot achieve the necessary scale, and will ‘amplify’ their audience segments with ‘look-a-like’ members.


About William Gorfein

William Gorfein founded PeerLogix, Inc. (OTCQB: LOGX) in 2013 in order to provide greater quantitative insights into the burgeoning world of OTT/streaming content. Combining his experience as a lead solutions engineer and his connections in the entertainment industry, Will built the underlying technology that became PeerLogix’s patented platform for observing, cataloging and packaging real-time viewership data across the span of long-tail OTT distribution networks. The data collected by this platform is used by advertisers, agencies, DMPs and DSPs to created highly unique audience targeting segments across the programmatic media ecosystem. Will is leading the company’s efforts to educated the industry on OTT data’s value beyond media buying; including informing content development, product placement and investment strategies.



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