Interview with Chris Pizzurro

Tech Cat Interview with Chris Pizzurro

 

Lori: Hello, everybody, and welcome to the Tech Cat Show. We are recording this week in Las Vegas at the Consumer Electronics Show, which is one of the biggest technology-trend shows out there, and seeing a lot of old friends, including today’s guest, the fabulous Chris Pizzurro from Canoe Ventures, and we’re going to get into everything there is to know about advanced advertising technologies in the broadcast space, as Canoe Ventures is one of those companies that is really digging in hard. So let’s have a big Tech Cat welcome for Chris Pizzurro. Welcome, Chris!

 

Chris: Thank you, Lori. Great to be here.

 

Lori: So, Chris, tell us all about your world, because Chris and I have known each other a long time, but he has been deeply involved with ad tech on the broadcast side and working with all the cable networks, or what we often call MSOs, and I know there are many other names now for the cable operators, but you really have been at the forefront of figuring out national advertising and broadcast, leveraging the latest technology. So, give us a sense of your background.

 

Chris: Sure. Well, it’s been thirty years, just about at this point, and I did have hair when I started, and I’ve lost many of it along the way, Lori. But I did, I came into this entertainment business, actually on the creative side, on the video and graphics production, and right away started finding work there with, at the time, what were new, burgeoning cable networks, way back in the day, and these were folks who needed help with video production and graphic production and sales and all sorts of things, so just sort of founded a niche group out of the gate. And as they grew, my career grew; and as they had more sales needs, so did my career; and as they had deeper technology ad needs, so did my career. So it’s really been parallel as growing up, sort of, as the cable industry has grown up, and most of that was a stint of thirteen years at Turner Broadcasting. And as I like to say to folks, I was at Turner when there was the big AOL merger and the big un-AOL merger during that time, right, and a few other things. And there I did things in terms of launching broadcast—like you mentioned—broadcast networks and all the ad technology that goes along with that. Then came along broadband sites, brand new things that were going to be video on the Internet—what a crazy new concept that was a whole bunch of years ago—and all of the ads that came

 

along with that. Along the way, too, stumbled into something with our cable operators called video on demand, and I had a little notion way back in the day that wouldn’t it be cool to swap an ad in and out of video on demand on a cable system. So, if you sort of hold that thought for a minute—so when I left Turner, worked with you and others on the agency side in terms of buying and selling of video media and did that for a few years and my own company called Leap, with a few others; and that consulting work led me back over on the cable side to—back to video on demand, and that’s where I met the folks at Canoe Ventures, and the Canoe guys were simultaneously having a crazy idea of putting ads into cable video on demand. And lo and behold, it’s now been five years at Canoe and really now finding our stride in terms of video on demand.

 

Lori: It sounds like it all happened at once, but the truth is that this has happened over years as this industry was developing, and when we talk about this whole world of advertising and broadcast content and being able to swap out ads in a cable environment, it was really, like, the dream deferred for the longest time, because as Internet got launched, we all got used to the digital channels and being able to do anything you want and targeting an ad to a user’s desktop. But that was really not something that, even though cable’s been around much longer, we just haven’t been able to get to, and so the revolution that you’re really driving right now is the ability to take that cool digital technology but apply it at massive scale in a broadcast environment. Is that a good way of sort of boiling it down?

 

Chris: It’s a great way to boil it down, and folks that have spoken about, you know, one of the buzzwords along the way years ago was convergence, right? That was—people threw that one out there a whole bunch of times, and I don’t think they really knew what it meant at the time; and we really are in the middle of it now, where, yes, there’s digital ad sales systems that are starting to act like linear ad sales systems, and linear ad sales systems that are starting to act like digital ad sales systems. And I sit in the room sometimes, and you realize one group is talking English, the other group is talking German, and the concept or the real solution is in French—I make that up, figuratively, right? Everyone’s not speaking the languages—but just in terms of hearing each other, right? They are each bringing their own success and their own failures to the table, and we really are seeing now where it’s exactly that, of folks who’re taking the best of digital and bringing that over to the linear side. And the traditional linear TV still has mass reach to it and great programming that’s tried and true

 

and great brands. So we really are seeing some very interesting trends that are happening in the marketplace.

 

Lori: And the thing that blows everybody’s minds away about all of this, too, is that it used to be—and it’s not so much more—but the people that were buying all of this, you know, the advertising-agency people who were working in digital and working in broadcast had completely separate budgets and lived in completely different offices and kind of didn’t really like each other.

 

Chris: Right, right. True.

 

Lori: So that when you’re trying to bridge these two worlds as a sales guy and also as an industry advocate, you’re almost bringing two sides of the industry together that don’t really want to come together.

 

Chris: Absolutely true, and you find that in both sides, meaning on the programmers’ side—so on the folks selling the industry—for years there was exactly that. There was, oh, I’m the TV guy, and, oh, I’m the digital guy; and then on the buying side you had the same thing of, oh, well, I’m the linear agency, and I’m the digital agency; and folks just, exactly, did not want to talk to each other, did not know each other, and wanted to keep the worlds separate. And I really think along the way, as you mentioned before, digital taking over sort of people’s lives and that is the clients started to say, hey, wait a minute; there’s no difference, right.

 

Lori: Right.

 

Chris: I hire you, and I hire you. I think it’s the brand, and I think it’s the CMOs and it’s the smart clients who started to say, hey, wait a minute; this is all video; this is all my ad play—my digital ad, video ad playing out. I really don’t care what your structure is. You guys need to get over it, you need to work together, and you need to work in my best interest. And now you’ve started to see both on the seller/programmer side and on the agency/buying side these groups talking together, too, which boils all down to my world and that is, therefore, the ad-tech stack all needs to work together, too. So we’re certainly not there yet. There’s certainly still work that needs to be done in making everything efficient on the ad stack, on the programmers’ side, on the agencies’ side, but I think there’s a clear understanding that this is the world. This is the way it is. There’s no going back. And now people are just looking for the efficiencies in it all.

 

 

Lori: And do you think, also, that broadcast-media buyers now, are they the only ones that have the right budget, because that was still the issue that came up for a lot of folks in this crazy space was that you wanted to go and sell interactive advertising, and the only folks that could afford it were the broadcast-media folks. Even though the digital folks wanted to do what you were talking about, they didn’t have those budgets. Has that changed, too?

 

Chris: I have seen the TV buyer come much more around, specifically in my world of VOD, where maybe three years ago a good percentage, majority of the buying was being done on a small scale by the digital- video buyers—and you saw it in the 2015 upfront, which is now playing out in the fourth quarter that just happened—a majority of that inventory was bought by the TV buyer, and, already, indication for this year’s 2016 upfront is more of that. You’ve seen more of the TV buyers say, wait a minute; this VOD inventory, I know it’s on demand, I know it acts a lot like digital video, but it’s on a TV set. This is my jurisdiction; this is my budget. I need to understand this space, and I should be the one executing.

 

Lori: Well, we’re going to take a break in a minute, but when we come back I want to talk to you a little bit about what are some of these VOD behaviors and TV-watching behaviors, because, really, when it comes down to it, you hear all these rumors that TV is dead, and the folks listening to this broadcast, who are brands and advertisers and even tech folks who are trying to understand how do I reach that consumer, is broadcast television now, with this interactive capability, is it the place I should be, and what’s really going on with how folks are consuming all of this great content, because I’m certainly still watching regular television, although, I would say I’m a little older than the people that people care about—only actually, not in my heart.

 

Chris: Right.

 

Lori: But when we come back with Chris Pizzurro at Canoe Ventures, we’re going to get more into what’s actually going on there with consumption behaviors in television and then what are these tech platforms, these ad-tech platforms, doing to map up to that. More with the Tech Cat and Chris Pizzurro in a moment.

 

{Commercial Break}

 

Lori: And welcome back to the Tech Cat Show, and we’re here with the fabulous Chris Pizzurro from Canoe Ventures, and Chris is an expert in advanced advertising technologies for broadcast television, and we’ve been learning all about what is really happening in that space, what technologies are available to create almost an on-demand advertising now that goes along with any VOD you’re watching, and, also, receiving ads in a broadcast environment that are really relevant to you. So my question to you is, are you seeing any other trends happening in our space and our world right now that are really going to impact how people watch television and, therefore, how advertisers reach them?

 

Chris: One trend I see, Lori, is on the back end, and it’s not really all that consumer facing, in terms of them knowing about it, but that’s the consolidation that’s going on in the ad-tech industry right now, where you have the studios themselves realizing that they can perhaps go direct to the consumer in ways they never did before. So they’re buying up companies and getting into the ad stacking. You have the programmers, like you mentioned before, with CBS All Access, there, too, they’re saying, wow, maybe there’s other ways for me to reach the consumer beyond broadcast or beyond cable and do that directly.

So you have a whole host of folks that technology has opened up them to question new business models, and what’s happened is a whole bunch of companies are getting bought up, where you have folks like Visible World and FreeWheel, who were in the ad-tech space, that Comcast bought them up in 2015. You have a company called Clearleap, an unlikely character in IBM, came into this space, and they are buying up media ad-tech companies, IBM is—they’ve assembled about three or four over the past year into their stack. SintecMedia bought up Broadway Systems, and you even have folks like BlackArrow, who are in the VOD space, and Cross MediaWorks bought them up. So there’s a real consolidation going on in the industry.

What that eventually should be is that things get more efficient, the consumer does get to keep this choice that they have, because right now they’ve become used to this choice, but it’s really expensive for the programmers, for the studios, to maintain this. It’s fun for the consumer to say, hey, I can get this program in eight different places, but that’s all the people on the back end needing to create that content and put it in those eight places instead of just one, and that’s really expensive to do. So you have all of these companies saying, okay, this is the new world, this is the way it’s going to be, but I need to buy up companies and I need to shore up my ad stock that I can do this on a consistent basis at scale going forward and do it efficiently,

 

because right now there’s a lot of folks losing a lot of money in this on- demand world until they can figure out a way to do it more efficiently.

 

Lori: Right. You have to operationalize all this madness or else you’re, like, sending the same piece of content on five different tech platforms, and it’s kind of what all the ad buyers are going through right now in the online space, with all these different trading desks. I don’t know how they keep track of it all; it’s maddening. So a question for you, then, is, do you see then all of this actually really consolidating, and when it does, what role will Canoe Ventures play when all these different cable networks have consolidated their media tech? Will Canoe still be a needed entity, because Canoe Ventures, conceptually, is made up of all the cable networks, right?

 

Chris: Yes. We are actually owned by the four major cable operators, but we service all of the programmers. So we really do sit in the middle. And you’re absolutely right: the more efficiency that comes is the more that there’s less need for a company like Canoe that is all about making it more stable and efficient for everyone in the ecosystem. But here is where the value will always come in, and that is you can technology yourself to death, but there will always be a place for quality control; there will always be a place for customer service. If you go back to—if you remember when the big-box furniture stores came onto the scene, and there was Home Depot, and they said, oh, you no longer need the small hardware store and the customer service and the quality and the guy that knows what he’s doing; you can just come to our big-box store and you can buy your refrigerator and you walk out. Well, that lasted a number of years, and then they all started to realize that they needed the experts, they needed the quality control. And now you walk into a Home Depot and there’s the paint expert, and there’s the hardware expert, and they’re all there ready to help you. I see that same sort of phenomenon help coming to this space is that the more we make it efficient on the things that should be efficient, they’re still going to need a place for quality control and monitoring, let alone a whole new industry called the data and the data flow that’s around it and the analytics around that data. So I think as we become more efficient in the areas we can become more efficient with, it does keep the door open for the quality and the analytics side of the business.

 

Lori: So, there’ll always be someone sort of managing this and keeping it under control, which is good to know.

 

Chris: Well, that’s—well, yeah, and we’ve seen that, right? We’ve never been afraid of automating some processes, right? If something should be automated, it will be. Someone will come along and automate it. But we do find that our phones still ring every day for something that has to do with something that still needs to be done by a human being.

 

Lori: So, we’re at the Consumer Electronics Show this week, and there are all sorts of announcements and launches going on. And I know that there was some great data that you guys were waiting this week to announce. Is there anything that you can share with the audience?

 

Chris: Yeah. We’re really excited in terms of the volume of work—we usually don’t publish our yearly numbers for a few weeks into the new year, but we did feel compelled, working with you, Lori, to get them out during CES. And we’re very happy to say that we’ve done over ten billion ad insertions—

 

Lori: Oh my god.

 

Chris: —in 2015, which is leaps and bounds over the six billion that we did in 2014. And that just speaks to—well, back to the consumer, that’s just a consumer watching more programs on demand, that’s more programmers out there selling that ad inventory, that’s more agencies and brands putting campaigns on there, it’s just more and more of the evolution of TV viewing. So we’re real proud of that over- ten-billion number that we’re announcing here this week. And that’s generated—when it comes down to, I was talking about before—is it’s about the money. That ten billion number translates into three hundred million dollars of revenue for the national programmers. So that starts to become a real business, and that’s three hundred million that was zero three or four years ago.

 

Lori: Wow.

 

Chris: So that’s a real exciting trend that we see. Some more things in the numbers that we’re releasing is to give people some insights in terms of where are those numbers happening. So, for instance, most of the viewing and VOD happens where it was in linear TV, meaning Saturdays and Sundays, where people have some more leisure time to sit back and perhaps watch a movie that they didn’t get to watch during the week. So VOD viewing is mainly on Saturdays and Sundays. The majority of the ads that happened in 2015 continue to

 

be a trend that we saw in 2013 and 2014 and that is during the program. So mainly one ad will play at the beginning of a program and then the majority of ads happen during the program and then usually there’s one positive-roll at the end and then you’re done, which makes sense. But there was a school of thought for a while of people saying, well, maybe I should put eight ads up front and then the consumer’s done with it and then they get the show for free, and that’s just not the way it has played out is the data that we’re releasing shows that no, it’s actually a good—about four ads in each break is the average that we see. The other trend that we’ll be talking about here at CES is that the fourth quarter continues to be the big viewing season—again, paralleling what has happened in linear TV for years, that the majority of viewing happens in the fourth quarter.

 

Lori: In the holiday season. Well, we have to take a break. When we come back, we’ll get some more of the exciting factoids that you’re announcing this week at the Consumer Electronics Show and maybe just some insight from you about some of the trends in tech that you personally are exploring and when we come back with Chris Pizzurro from Canoe Ventures and the Tech Cat.

 

{Commercial Break}

 

Lori: Hi, everybody, and we’re back on the Tech Cat Show, with the fabulous Chris Pizzurro from Canoe Ventures, and Chris is an expert in advanced advertising and broadcast television, and Canoe Ventures is really responsible for really driving the possibility of national advertising and interactive advertising in the world of broadcast television. And so I was just asking Chris, what’s going on with consumer behaviors? Like, are they watching broadcast television?

Are people using that on-demand capability on their set-top box?

 

Chris: So, people are absolutely watching television, no doubt about that. You are clearly seeing the continuing shift of what TV is. There is that balance of now what is linear TV as what folks know as TV, but in the case of Canoe, where we power ads into cable video on demand, and that has become just as much as people’s TV experience as the DVR became ten years ago. So now if you look at it any Nielsen report in terms of what an ad rating is, that report will include linear TV; will include VOD, some VOD viewing for the first three days; will include DVR viewing; and now more and more, where you have your connected TVs, like your Rokus and, certainly, your Apple TV. So, Lori, it’s really a case of just like years ago in entertainment when silent movies became talkies and black-and-white TV became color, I

 

think we’re seeing that same sort of transition as TV is TV, we’re just seeing an evolution of what that means; and it’s, for me, very exciting to be in the middle of that. And I always tell our crew out in Denver, our technology crew, of, you guys are on the cutting edge and right in the thick of history being made. Same thing is that—like I said, that shift from silent movies to talkies or black and white to color, you all are in the middle of this shift of TV. So TV certainly isn’t dead. I mean, there was just something that came out a few weeks ago that made reference to there was more scripted TV programming that was released in 2015 than was a high-water mark than any other year previous.

 

Lori: Yeah, yeah. I know that just from trying to keep up with it all— Chris: Right.

Lori: —as a trendmeister, I have to have a sense of what’s happening culturally, and so I just have to know what the different shows are about, even if I’m not watching the whole series. And it’s been really hard for me to keep up, but what are some of the wackier behaviors, because I remember a couple years ago, looking at Rentrak, which was one of the recording companies that was really reporting on the VOD behaviors, and I remember they were seeing a lot of, like, midnight watching of movies, and, obviously, porn is always something that pops us in those reports, but just in terms of now that all this is further developed, are you seeing any really interesting sort of general behaviors arise from how people are watching television?

 

Chris: Yeah. In the early days of cable VOD, the main trend was kid viewing. It was a lot of the babysitter, where whoever, a parent, was in the house and would plop the kid down in the TV and play a kids’ show and some things like Nickelodeon and Cartoon Network drove a lot of the early viewing. And then fast forward a few years, now, and the programmers, the networks, have cut more deals with the cable operators to put more of their prime-time programs. So now when you go to video on demand, you have things like Scandal on ABC and Quantico, and great shows from NBC and Fox; and so when they put that program on there and started to promote it, the consumer found it and started watching it. So now the category of prime-time TV— whatever that may be, but prime-time TV is what a lot of the folders are called on the cable VOD system—that now has the majority of the viewing and has surpassed the kids’ viewing. So, really interesting trend. And because of the work that Canoe has done, and that is allowing the national programmers to monetize those programs

 

they’re putting on VOD via advertising, they are now putting more promotion behind it. So now it just starts feeding itself. So if you look on any given TV network now and they’re promoting a program, they will say, find it Tuesday night at 8:00 or on VOD or on their, perhaps their app. So they’re actively promoting VOD, and that’s because now they can monetize it with advertising.

 

Lori: Now, is the consumer, then, kind of paying twice, because am I paying to watch VOD and then I’m also watching an ad, or are they giving the VOD away?

 

Chris: They are giving the VOD away free with your cable subscription, and that’s what’s real interesting when you ask a consumer, are they getting it for free. They say yes, it’s free video on demand; and that’s interesting because they’re still paying their cable company a hundred fifty, two hundred dollars a month for the cable subscription package, but they don’t view that as directly paying for the VOD service because there is no upcharge for it; and that’s why the category, when it has advertising, is classified as free VOD as opposed to subscription VOD, and that is when you pay for, say, HBO, if you want to get the HBO—

 

Lori: Go, or whatever it is, yeah.

 

Chris: –Go, yeah. I think it’s called Go. You’re going to pay another

$4.99 for that, for the VOD subscription. So the consumer views it as free, and there’s advertising in there, so now the real balance comes on what level of advertising. How many ads in any break is going to be too little or too much, and that’s a real trend we work with all our programmers on, on a monthly basis, of trying to find that right balance, because for VOD they get the equivalent of turning the channel as just getting out of the program. So they need to be real careful about what is the ad load.

 

Lori: So, interesting when you think about, too, so what’s happening with CBS All Access and then NBC’s, what’s it called, Soseem?

 

Chris: Right, the comedy—

 

Lori: The comedy portal, which will be a separate cost but that’ll be digital, so it’s on demand but it’s accessed through digital channels, but it’s on demand, right? But then again, it’s stuff that I can’t see anywhere else, because, for me, if you’re going to launch a new Star Trek series, I’m going to watch it and you’re not going to stop me. So

 

I’m going to be driven to pay those micropayments, because they’re kind of forcing me to do that, which sometimes I wonder is it completely ethical in some ways to make me now pay for cable and this special CBS access thing, so I can not only watch the regular stuff, but I can also get the special shows.

 

Chris: Well, you did that for years with HBO or Showtime. I mean, HBO set the model of I am going to go out of my way and spend a lot of money to give the creatives creative freedom that they can go out and make fantastic programs that people will pay $9.99 or $12.99 a month for. So while everything is new and there’s certainly new distribution channels and new players and new programs, the consumer choice is still a lot of the same. It’s I’m either going to make that tradeoff of watch something for free—and I know what that tradeoff is of watching ads—or it has so much value to me that I do want to pay a certain amount and watch it without ads. So it’s a lot of more of the same; it’s just that now there’ so many more choices and so many more platforms and it’s just become very complex for everyone.

 

Lori: Well, we have to take a break, but when we come back, I want to talk to you also about trends that you’re seeing across the board in advertising in this space and anything that you think will ultimately impact where the technology is going to go. So we’re going to be back in a moment with Chris Pizzurro from Canoe Ventures, getting into more detail about the future of ad tech in broadcast television and what consumers are really doing when they watch TV.

 

{Commercial Break}

 

Lori: And we’re back with Chris Pizzurro from Canoe Ventures, and Chris was just filling us in on some exciting research and factoids that they are sharing with the world here at the Consumer Electronics Show, some really interesting data points about how people are consuming media, and you were just telling us that Q4, in parallel to previous years, is where a lot of viewing happens, the highest numbers in viewing. Now where can people read more about all of your research?

 

Chris: We will have posted up on our CanoeVentures.com site, right on the home page you’ll see a download for the 2015 year-end number report, and that’s a free report that has all this information in it, and I believe they will also log onto your site at story-tech.com or on CES, should have a posting as well.

 

 

Lori: That’s right. All of the sites, the Consumer Electronics Show’s mobile app will have the report towards the end of this week, and StoryTech will as well, and, obviously, Canoe Ventures is a great place to go for more research. Now, just swinging it back to you, I always like to ask my guests what’s going on in their home with some of these new technology trends and devices. So how are you at home— how are the Pizzurros watching television? Do you have an Apple TV? Are you a Roku family? Are you traditional cable set-top boxes? How are you digging in?

 

Chris: Yeah, well, it’s still linear sports and high-profile programming, live programming that a lot of folks are in linear, do more and more watch on VOD because I feel obligated.

 

Lori: You want to generate the data.

 

Chris: I want to generate the data, but also Apple TV is an amazing product, and the new version that came out really did improve. It is just amazing to get a stream and watch how far streaming has come, right, Lori? You know, you and I, years ago when we were doing this and it’d be choppy and it’d be pixelated and it’d be buffering and a whole bunch of things and the whole back end and still that plays on the cable broadband infrastructure.

 

Lori: I love that new Apple TV, and so much of what we’re seeing on the show floor this week is all about discovery and voice activation and that the ability to just talk into your remote control and tell the Apple TV what you want to see, and I’ve started, also, complaining to it about what my husband likes to watch. Now it doesn’t respond to that.

 

Chris: Not yet. Not yet, anyway. But I’m sure, give it some time. So, and it has allowed me to discover some new content. We found Crackle—Sony’s Crackle—that was on Apple TV and some great programming that was there from Jerry Seinfeld’s show to the [unclear] show.

 

Lori: Oh, yeah. That’s a breakout, that’s a breakout hit that drove people to that platform, that, was is it called? Coffee and Cars?

 

Chris: Yeah, Comedians in

 

Lori: Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee.

 

 

Chris: So, you know, that’s just amazing. Again, I feel a little guilty watching an Apple TV. And it goes back to what we were talking about before and that is that is a great piece of content that I will find where I can get it. In that case I’m not quite sure if I would pay $4.99 for a subscription, but it is a piece of content that I watch that, you know, Crackle and Apple TV, as opposed to watching something that was on linear at the time. So it all comes down to how easy it is for the consumer, whether they’re watching ads, whether they’re buying it, it’s all the balance and it is all what is the new reality of TV.

 

Lori: Are your kids consuming a lot of small, snackable video on their mobile devices, as is the trend? Are you seeing—your kids are almost an internal research group. I find that my step-teenagers and my six- year-old, studying them sometimes about how they watch things.

 

Chris: Yeah, well, both my guys are grown and out of the house, so God only knows what they do. I do know one of my sons is at ESPN, actually, and a producer there, so when he’s here visiting, he will have the game live on ESPN; he’ll have the ESPN app on his laptop, watching something else there; and then also will have iPhone up twittering, commenting on what’s going on. So you definitely see that happening where all the numbers are, saying, oh, TV viewing is up, TV viewing is up; and people go well, how can that be, and a good percentage of it is that multi-tasking aspect of there’s live and there’s tweeting going on during it and someone may have some other web surfing going on at the same time.

 

Lori: It’s all TV. I mean, that’s the thing. It’s all TV. Now what other industry shows are you making sure that you go to? I know you go to the Consumer Electronics Show. Do you go to NATPE, happening at the end of January, and NAB as well?

 

Chris: I do go to NAB. I do go to INTX, which is the traditional cable show, which has now, interesting enough, become the Internet and cable TV show.

 

Lori: Ah.

 

Chris: And that’s going to be in Boston this week. And I haven’t gone in years, but I know a bunch of folks still find value in, you know, that younger audience and South by Southwest. But CES has surprisingly become a real great place to see the trends, and the work that

 

StoryTech does in bringing folks around to really catch the highlights is a great thing.

 

Lori: Do you envision going to some of the newer shows, like dmexco and, now, what has become such a big advertiser hub, in com?

 

Chris: While I would love to go to those places, and I often get invitations to come and speak in London and things of that nature, Canoe is very domestic focused and domestic based; and certainly while the world is opening up more international and the efficiencies we spoke about have to play out on a global scale, my day in and day out is very domestic. So, sorry, I’m boring. You’re not going to see me in the south of France this year, Lori.

 

Lori: But you raised a really good point that while Canoe is domestically focused, you are looking at global behaviors, and everything has fingers everywhere else now, so shows now are globally launched. So that must be impacting what you’re doing, to a certain extent.

 

Chris: Well, it does, because while we’re domestically focused, we have systems plug into us, which are globally focused. So we have an integration with a company called FreeWheel, which I mentioned before, which is owned by Comcast, now. We have an integration with software called DART for Publishers, which was bought years ago by a little company called Google. So both these platforms help programmers to book campaigns internationally, if they want to. So our clients, whether it’s a Disney or a Fox or an NBC, these are global companies. So their software and FreeWheel or DART—DFP—allow them, if they need to, to be able to book campaigns, ad campaigns, on an international scope. So what happens is they do that within those programs, and then for the VOD domestic part, they will pass all that campaign information into the Canoe system. So, yeah, we know exactly what our focus is, we know what we need to do, and that’s very domestic focused, but, yeah, you can’t lose sight, right, whether you’re a brand, an agency, or a programmer, you cannot lose fact that your efficiencies and in your ad stack need to think and execute on a global scale.

 

Lori: Well, it has been a delightful and insightful pleasure to speak with you, Chris Pizzurro from Canoe Ventures, the man who really knows everything about what’s happening in the advanced ad-tech space and broadcast media and now digital. So check out all the new data that’s being released this week at the Consumer Electronics Show

 

on Canoe Ventures’ site; and also on the Consumer Electronics Show app, if you happen to be in town; and also on the StoryTech’s site.

And we love hearing from you. Are you tweeting or blogging or doing anything like that that folks can follow you, Chris?

 

Chris: Absolutely. My Twitter is ChrisPizzurro and very active, so please follow me.

 

Lori: So, it’s been great talking to you. Ladies and gentlemen, have a great week, and Chris and I are going to go soak our feet because we walk a lot at this show. So have a great week; take care, everybody; and we’ll see you next week on the Tech Cat Show.