TiVo Inc. (NASDAQ: TIVO), the creator of and a leader in advertising solutions and television services for digital video recorders (DVRs), and NBC Universal (NBCU), have entered into a multi-year strategic partnership to leverage the strong content brands of NBCU with the unique advertising, promotional and audience research capabilities enabled by TiVo DVRs. As part of the agreement, NBC Universal’s 14 television networks and 10 NBC owned-and-operated TV stations will be able to sell TiVo Interactive Tags in combination with other NBC products and will subscribe to TiVo’s Stop||Watch second-by-second commercial ratings service. The announcement was made today by Tom Rogers, President and CEO, TiVo and Mike Pilot, President, NBC Universal Sales and Marketing.
Rogers said, “This is a watershed moment for advertisers, broadcast and cable television and TiVo. We have been working tirelessly to help the media industry better understand and solve the significant strategic challenges they face in the age of the DVR. Partnering with a TV powerhouse like NBC Universal to bring TiVo’s intuitive advertising solutions to a broad base of advertisers is a major step forward in the media industry’s efforts to make sure advertisers are able to adapt to the new world of DVR based viewing.”
Said Pilot, “With proliferating media options and changing consumer behavior, our clients are asking for new ideas, better metrics and more accountability. Our partnership with TiVo is another example of NBCU’s continuing effort to improve the effectiveness of TV advertising for our clients, evolve the commercial form and expand the value of our advertising inventory.” He added, “We’ve made a commitment to our advertisers to offer them better proof of performance and to help ensure their marketing messages resonate in today’s media environment. This partnership allows us to provide clients with products and solutions to help them analyze, understand and adapt to the new ways consumers are watching television.”
As part of the agreement, NBC Universal will offer advertisers the ability to purchase TiVo’s Interactive Tags in conjunction with other NBC advertising products as a way to enhance their campaigns on NBC broadcast and cable networks and owned TV stations. The tags allow viewers to click on an icon when watching a commercial to obtain more information about that advertiser and then return to the exact place they exited viewing. Tags also provide advertisers with an effective way to reach live, time-shifted or fast-forwarding viewers and to achieve deeper engagement through the opt-in requests for more information. NBC will also be able to offer its advertisers detailed reports on the results of campaigns that include TiVo Interactive Tags. Under the partnership, TiVo and NBC Universal will also work together to develop additional advertising products and will share revenue where appropriate.
Regarding NBC’s subscription to TiVo’s Stop||Watch™ ratings service, Mr. Rogers said, “We are thrilled that NBC is the first network to embrace our Stop||Watch commercial ratings service and can measure audience viewing behavior and ad campaigns on a second-by-second basis, in both Live and Timeshifted viewing contexts. Moreover, NBC can benefit by using the Stop||Watch service to evaluate the effectiveness of various efforts to retain audience during commercial pods.”
NBC Universal will also begin utilizing TiVo Record Tags in its on-air promotions, which enable one-click recordings of NBC programming on any of its broadcast or cable networks when a promotional spot appears for the relevant show. NBC will use the Record Tags to help viewers discover the full breadth of NBC programming and to drive additional viewing.
Today’s announcement was driven by the industry’s conversion to the C+3 currency, which captures time-shifted viewing as part of the currency of the sale.