MCN promises to learn from Seven and Nine’s ‘mistakes’ in addressable TV

MCN says the delay in taking its addressable TV solution to market could be a blessing in disguise, by giving it the chance to perfect its offering off the back of experiments – both failed and effective – from rivals Seven and Nine.

“The great thing is, we’ll let these two [Seven and Nine] go off, learn all the mistakes, and then we’ll just copy [the good stuff]. That’s a nice way to look at it,” MCN’s director of advanced advertising, Nev Hasan, said at the Think TV Think Tank event.

MCN has recently undergone a brand refresh

Hasan said MCN’s addressable solution had been delayed for a number of reasons.

“We are actively looking at two things for us, and this is what’s delayed it. We’ve got the IP solution with our streaming services that are coming out – we’ve got Foxtel Go, Foxtel Now and now look at Kayo, our new sport offering, and we’re really working hard on the set-top box.

“That’s a big major play for us, but the tech requirement and the investment that goes into that is a challenge and what we’re loving at the moment is there two [Seven and Nine] going off and trail blazing away. We’ll take all those little learnings, package it up in another way, but ultimately it’s to make the industry better. We’re not here to have a dig at everyone and say what’s wrong or right about it, but we’ll tweak all of our products as we go along,” he said.

James Carr, Ten’s head of revenue and analytics, said Ten was also running behind time due to its recent break-up with MCN.

“We were a long way down the road with Nev [Hasan] and the team on developing the addressable and the programmatic offering through MCN, and obviously now we’ve moved to a different space on that, and bad pun, but yea, we’re playing catch-up.”

Dominic White, Nathan Powell, James Carr, Luke Smith and Nev Hasan at Think TV’s Think Tank event

Ten’s offering, however, will be solid, he said.

“From the Upfronts and the announcements that we’ve had and the technology that we’re bringing from overseas… what we can say is the feedback in the market has been fantastic. People are chomping at the bit, and I think when we are ready, it’s going to be exciting times for sure.”

As Nine and Seven expand their offerings, and MCN and Ten work towards launching theirs, Hasan warned the industry not to over-complicate it, and ruin it before it makes its mark.

“Don’t overcomplicate it. I’m digital and pretty much all I’ve done my whole career is digital. And I walk into a room and you throw out a billion acronyms and you talk about 27 different ways of buying certain things, but if you can’t do it simply, effectively and showcase how easy it can be, it will ruin the whole thing,” he said.

“Don’t try and do all of it at once. Test and learn. Dip your toe in. Scale is still important. Right message, right time, right user is the key, and I am really scared, because I’ve been in meetings and I’ve had to stop myself from going where it can go, and then you’re like ‘Great. We’re reaching four people. Wow. What a great campaign that is.’ But, if someone wants to pay $1,000 CPM for it, then by all means, I’ll gladly do that. But we’ve got to be really careful, because we’ll make it really expensive and it won’t be part of what we want to do as an industry. And it’s about driving outcomes at a decent scale.”


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