Comcast Media Center, Telestream simplify spot ad delivery
The Comcast Media Center’s Radiance division and Telestream have teamed up on simplifying the process of delivering HD and SD spot ads to both broadcast and cable companies.
With the backdrop of Canoe Ventures’ eventual rollout of advertising on a national scale in mind, Radiance’s AdDelivery workflow was integrated with Telestream’s AdManager. The end-to-end asset delivery platform is currently in use by Bright House Networks and some unannounced cable and broadcast companies.
The end result of the integration is that the entire spot delivery process is now automated, including receipt, notification, tracking, previewing, reformatting and delivery to on-air servers. Radiance and Telestream made this new efficiency possible by using a file-based workflow that eliminated the need for tape, reducing labor and handling costs and enforcing quality control. Spots are delivered in each destination’s native file format ready for air, meaning that no additional expense for hardware or software is required.
Radiance’s AdDelivery system takes the ad content from ad agencies and post-production houses and then delivers it to the end destination, while Telestream’s device is located in a cable operator’s local ad-insertion framework or in the broadcast facility of a cable network.
“Historically, what has happened with a lot of people is that they get an ad on tape from an ad agency or from an electronic provider and they have to manually do this work to convert the ad into a different format, or convert the file system around it, and then they have to physically put it into the ad insertion gear if it’s a cable operator, or put it into the play air servers if it’s a cable network,” said Gary Traver, senior vice president and chief operating officer of the Comcast Media Center. “The Telestream device picks up the work directly after we’ve deposited it in the end-point location, converts it, and then places it into the on-the-air location for them without any human hands touching it. It’s quite a bit of workflow savings.”
A key component of quality control was the automated transcoding of advertising spots by AdDelivery, according to Traver.
“What customers want and expect is to receive all of their ad spots – HD and SD alike – in the format they prefer,” he said. “Today, ad spots are often sent in a generic file format, and cable and broadcast stations have to manually check each one and then transcode it into the native file format they require. But now, with AdDelivery, manual transcoding, along with its cost and capacity for errors, becomes a thing of the past.”
Radiance’s AdDelivery was designed with the ability to shorten the time it takes for an ad to go from an ad agency to on-air, and also with scalability in mind, which seems to be a good fit with Canoe Ventures’ goal of a national ad platform.
“I think we’re all looking forward to Canoe getting a good, solid foothold in 2010,” Traver said. “Everything we do at the Comcast Media Center is consistent with what Canoe is trying to get done.”