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Verizon Media launches OTT Smart Auction for greater AVOD monetisation

Verizon Media has launched a new header bidding-like solution for OTT publishers called OTT Smart Auction.

OTT Smart Auction is a server-to-server container integration which Verizon Media says enables OTT programmatic demand to compete with reserved demand in a “real-time, unified auction in a publisher’s ad server”.

The solution has specifically been designed with the growing AVOD market in mind, considering that the process for monetising ad-supported longform video “is still dated with overreliance on reserved sales and inefficient ad-serving waterfalls that deliver repetitive ads and a poor user experience.”

In contrast to this, Verizon Media’s OTT Smart Auction was created to cater to premium video publishers that deliver longform on-demand or live streaming content through CTV or mobile apps including broadcasters, cable networks and DMVPDs.

The introduction of header bidding-like functionality, OTT Smart Auction promises to deliver “the most efficient path to unique Verizon Media demand,” along with increased revenue derived from selling inventory “at its true value”, and improved transparency into auction activity.

The solution is built using Prebid server, a trusted, open source codebase that enables anyone to contribute and review code.

Iván Markman, chief business officer at Verizon Media, said: “Verizon Media uniquely understands the needs and challenges of large-scale video publishers. We’re the only player to offer an end-to-end video solution, from streaming, delivery and security, to programmatic. We’re also unique in that we don’t directly produce premium long form content but rather focus on enabling the ecosystem whether via distribution or our platform capabilities. That’s critical when selecting a partner for OTT monetisation.”

Verizon Media noted that OTT Smart Auction is the company’s first solution to be integrated with its Smartplay Prebid solution. Smartplay Prebid is a server-side integration that exposes inventory directly to OTT Smart Auction and utilises Smartplay’s server-side ad insertion (SSAI) capability to provide a seamless transition between content and ads on any device or platform.

Markman said: “As an end-to-end, full-stack technology partner, we can uniquely support publishers and advertisers in unlocking the full value of premium longform and on-demand OTT video.

“We’ve brought together all the pieces you need, whether you’re a publisher or an advertiser, in one integrated platform, ensuring seller and buyer optimisation and efficiency.”