LAS VEGAS - At CES, media agencies assume the dual role of soothsayer and gardener. That's because their clients come to the extravaganza with one main objective.
"Show me what the future is going to be," is how Brian Terkelsen, the Global President of Mediavest | Spark, explains it during a break in the activity. Clients expect their agency partners to weed out what's not particularly relevant.
Problem is, CES very rarely deals in what's real. "It deals in what's real for that vendor," Terkelsen says.
So while curved television screens are real, so are refrigerators that talk to you and show you pictures of their contents. Meanwhile, "We've been talking about the connected home every year for seven years," he adds.
There's no such uncertainty about television, which Terkelsen describes as "bigger, stronger, better than it's ever been." This leads to a "content is king mentality" that's good for all marketers.
His key focus is on future viewership and, more specifically, how content reaches viewers, along with "how does the marketer play, because the biggest concern of advertisers today is how do I not get out of the equation," Terkelsen says. "In a fully subscription world, there's no room for advertising."
He calls the ability to target individual households with addressable TV ads "a panacea" while expressing the desire of many in the advertising world for more granularity in this type of targeting.
"We have to get to the point where I actually know the difference between you and me," Terkelsen says. "I want to sell you certain things and I want to avoid certain things with you because it's pointless."
While that's the ultimate in advertising efficiency, there are generational factors at work. "Part of our demographics and audience have to age out of the fear of being identified," says Terkelsen.
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