Targeted ads were supposed to save the $70 billion TV industry, but advertisers say that time is quickly running out

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TV companies long bet on the promise of addressable advertising to save their $70 billion industry amid the rise of cord cutters and streaming video giants.
But the coronavirus has caused advertisers to cut addressable ad budgets and consumers to drop pay-TV services.
And AT&T — one of a few big sellers of addressable advertising — is reportedly looking to spin off pay-TV service DirecTV and digital ad firm Xandr.
Advertisers have used addressable to target people who don’t see national TV ads, but have only treated it as an experimental part of their budgets. Scale and a lack of measurement standards are still challenges.
But companies like Ampersand, Xandr, and Vizio-backed Project OAR are trying to make more addressable inventory available.
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The TV advertising industry is trying to reinvent itself and become more digital, but there have been signs that the long-held promise of targeted TV advertising is losing some steam with advertisers.The pandemic has accelerated cord cutting as the number of streaming services grows while advertisers cut linear TV budgets and rework big commitments with networks like NBCUniversal, Disney, and ViacomCBS.And AT&T — one of the biggest sellers of targeted, or …

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