Page 32 - Adnews Magazine May-June 2021
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“And as it turns out, thankfully, things began to get better and recover a lot faster than what anyone had expected or hoped.
“We had been thinking the TV market would possibly be going back 25%-30% July to December, and BVOD would be marginally up.
“But the market ended up being slightly ahead year-on-year of 2019 and the BVOD market grew by 47%. So we got that dramatically wrong in the most positive of ways.
And the same for the start of 2021. The market is tracking higher than forecasts.
“It's been a hockey stick,” he says. “It's certainly creating a lot of demand for television and a lot of brands are coming through it. For the last half of last year, televi- sion was the fastest growing sector and I don't recall when that's been in the past. It was a very good result for television.”
In July to December, the growth categories were healthcare food, FMCG, retail, technology, in-home entertainment, streaming, house- hold supplies and alcohol.
“There were some big shifts, especially into Q4, as people started to see there were opportu- nities to come out of lockdown,” says Burnette.
The strong demand for televi- sion spots is putting a strain on resources across the board for media agencies and clients.
“What we're seeing is that the pace picked up through the latter part of COVID-19 last year and it has continued this year,” he says.
“And we've had to find new ways of working and processes and systems. It's never an exact sci- ence, but yeah. It's a champagne problem in that there's lots of activity, but the teams are becom- ing very adept at working at that pace and with the changes.
“It's a two-speed economy as it relates to TV because we're talking around brands and into the Olympics coming in July, and sport into the latter half of the year with the Ashes, and even the Winter Olympics next February.
“We're encouraging people to go longer because the market is running hot. And we’re having good long-term strategic conversa- tions, and that's a positive sign.
“The ad market
is showing green shoots of growth, with television benefitting from advertisers shifting back to brand building.”
investment bank Jefferies
“We're really sort of doubling down on the cultural moments that matter and across the year. Has there ever been a more important Olympic Games for bringing the world together? It's going to be a very significant moment in time as the world comes together for all the right reasons around the Olympics.
“And of course we've got home Ashes as well, the AFL grand final, the Supercars, the Bathurst 1000 back on Seven.
“The BVOD marketplace in December was up 77% year-on-year, which is the largest month in the history of BVOD. It goes from strength to strength.
“Seven Plus is a powerhouse now with a majority of the content, not just catch-up — it's standalone content. And that's growing our data capabilities. Real IQ is just accelerating that growth.
“A lot of new brands are coming into BVOD as they see the benefit because it's proven to add incremental reach to television. So when you combine the two, it's definitely a reach growth opportunity. And connect televisions continue to represent, for us, close to 70% of the entire streaming video on demand. So there's a couple of massive growth areas in there and a huge opportunity.
“The connected television is the most underutilised marketing weapon in the country right now. It's huge growth. While the other devices are still getting a lot of support through the brands, I think the connect television still has a big opportunity to have more brands investing in it. So that's going to be the big story of 2021.”
Richard Hunwick, Nine’s director of sales for television, lives in Brisbane and works in Sydney so during the pandemic he spent more time with his family.
Normally, he is a fly-in, fly-out worker. Being at home more was a personal positive.
“But it was very difficult not being able to see the teams,” he says. “People are the most important thing, and managing them through that process was a really big part of what we had to do.
“We've got a young workforce, and for many of them, making sure they were OK was a really important part to me. Many of them live alone, many in apartments. Guys in Melbourne were locked up for 127 days. Trying to make sure we looked after our people was a really big part of last year.
“It was challenging but I think everybody rose to it. We're very proud

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