Best of Web: ITV, Channel 4 and Sky Unite to Champion TV Advertising in Face of Online Threat

By Angie Johnston  |  February 7, 2018

Gideon Spanier | Haymarket Media Group, Ltd. | February 7, 2018

The advertising bosses of Britain’s three big commercial broadcasters have given their first joint interview to champion TV in the face of competition from the tech giants.

Kelly Williams, managing director of commercial at ITV, Jonathan Allan, sales director of Channel 4, and John Litster, managing director of Sky Media, gave an impassioned defence of TV’s ability to build brands and insisted there is no other medium that can reach as many 16 to 24s despite a drop in young viewing.

They were bullish about the prospects for addressable TV advertising because it allows both mass and personalised marketing and they questioned the “appalling” environment for a lot of online advertising.

“If you start digging into why trust in advertising is in decline, it isn’t telly advertising,” Williams said. “It’s what’s going on online. It’s like a Wild West. It’s unregulated and you’re tracked and you’re stalked.”

Williams, Allan and Litster spoke to Campaign ahead of the inaugural Big TV Festival, a two-day event on 8-9 February in the New Forest, for young advertisers and agency planners with three to five years’ experience who have been nominated by their companies.

Their decision to speak out comes as Netflix, Amazon and Apple ramp up their investment in subscription-based premium online video and Google’s YouTube and Facebook continue to push their ad-funded video platforms.


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