Nine creates show ratings predictor as part of new programmatic offering

Nine is making a push into automated TV buying with the launch of programmatic platform 9Galaxy, which includes new audience forecasting technology which it says will enable it to more accurately predict how programming will rate.

Nine has partnered with Australian-based Landsberry & James and global technology platform Landmark to create the programmatic platform, which is set to go live in February 2017.

It has seen Nine invest in the creation of a new forecasting technology which Michael Stephenson, Nine chief sales office, says will help it be able to guarantee outcomes for clients.


Michael Stephenson: The technology will machine-learn to be forecast more accurately about how a show will deliver ratings

“We have employed a number of data scientists and they are working with us to create a forecasting tool. There was nobody in the world  that had a tool that was advanced for our needs,” he said.

“If we’re going to guarantee an outcome we need to be very, very clear on what our future audience delivery will look like.”

The data scientists are looking back five years over every single show Nine has broadcast and how it has rated in the environment based on genre and competitor programming.

Stephenson said: “Over time the technology will machine-learn to be able to forecast more accurately what a show that we might have will deliver from a ratings point of view based on all these data points.”

Moving forward Nine will “fuse in other data sets” including the weather or concert series to better determine how a program will rate.

“It will allow us to accurately forecast what the future’s going to be like by using all of these data-points as opposed to what happens today where somebody uses the last four weeks as an average,” Stephenson said.

He added: “The tool we create will be equally as valuable for our content and programming teams as it will be for our sales teams. They will have a good sense of what outcomes are delivered when certain shows compete against other shows either in our ecosystem or in the broader ecosystem. It will be an incredibly valuable tool.”

The ratings prediction tool is linked directly to the programmatic offering 9Galaxy which Stephenson says will see over 50% of Nine’s television inventory being traded programmatically by the middle of next year.

“In February 2017 we will be trading our inventory in an automated sense starting first with our linear television product. In prime-time and sport on Nine, it will be automated, but it will be bought by clients as they currently buy it, they will buy it spot by spot to build reach,” he explained.

“Outside of primetime and sport, which effectively represents 93% of our inventory, will be traded programmatically with new investment models and in those new investment models we will guarantee the outcome of the campaigns that you buy.

“If you buy 100 ratings with Nine we will guarantee to deliver 100 ratings but you will give us the flexibility to deliver that audience across a range of shows, you won’t pick program by program.”

Nine also confirmed it had gone live with a new Adobe Audience Manager data management platform that will allow it to provide consumers with personalised content on platforms like 9Now.


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