Targeted Delivery

Linear Solutions

Imagine Communications’ Targeted Delivery Solutions for Linear distribution enable media companies to reduce costs and simplify workflow complexity. Programmers and MVPDs have traditionally shared the pain of linear content distribution: high costs and inflexible hardware. A comprehensive portfolio of Targeted Delivery Linear Solutions will cure a dependency on expensive infrastructure – driving down TCO and opening up new revenue opportunities.

Linear Distribution
By replacing legacy satellite-based infrastructure with an Imagine linear distribution solution, programmers and MVPDs can achieve material savings and enhance revenue by migrating to an infrastructure based on more flexible, current OTT technologies.

Linear Monetization
Programmers and station groups have traditionally been limited to a one-size-fits-all advertising model, with each destination in their distribution network receiving identical content and commercials over expensive satellite links. But as content providers migrate to terrestrial distribution infrastructure, the opportunity arises to expand their monetization options by enabling ad targeting on a region-by-region basis.

With Imagine’s linear monetization solution, programmers and station groups alike can now significantly expand ad-generated revenue through regional targeting of commercials and content.  This first-of-its-kind solution utilizes proven, industry-standard OTT technologies in a broadcast workflow, allowing national broadcasters to produce derivative broadcast MPEG-2 transport streams with multiple variations from a single playout system. This can include alternate content for regionalized ad replacement driving higher value per avail or for any blackout requirements.

This integrated dynamic advertising ecosystem leverages AIM, Imagine’s industry-leading manifest manipulator, POIS functionality to groom or directly insert markers for ads and alternate content, and a robust Alternate Content Decision Service.

The standards-based and network-proven solution offers a distributed architecture for independent scaling and redundancy. Manifest manipulation is made possible across all event types and use-cases, including linear TV, VOD, pre-record DVR, hot-record DVR, and blackouts. In addition, state-of-the-art third-party campaign management and analytics tools ensure maximum value for all ad placements.

Satellite Replacement
MVPDs can also benefit from Imagine’s linear monetization solution — replacing not only their satellite distribution system but also their systems for managing blackout and local ad-splicing, with one ABR-video-based infrastructure.

Imagine’s linear monetization solution is enabled by ABR packaging coupled with server-side manifest manipulation capabilities, HTTP-UDP gateway, and placement opportunity conditioning.   The business-driving solution leverages the robustness of HTTP and CDNs, scales easily from 10s to hundreds of zones, reduces the complexity of managing multiple playlists and servers and can even provide an alternate to IRDs. 

Alternate Content
Integral to all Targeted Delivery solutions, Imagine’s POIS functionality is used to ingest regional content rights and alternate content variations. The POIS manages insertion of content via control of SCTE-35 cues, either via conditioning of in-band cues or injection of cues based on out-of-band data. Multiple specifications can be leveraged to describe regional content rights, including SCTE-224, CableLabs ESNI, and even simple CSV files.

With SCTE-35s delineating alternate content and ad locations, Imagine’s AIM manifest manipulator is used to create stream variants and deliver those variants to centrally located or distributed gateways for conversion to MPEG-2 TS streams carrying H.264, H.265 or MPEG-2 encoded video for distribution over traditional linear networks.

Benefits

  • Increased Revenue
    • Higher CPM through targeting/regionalization of ad opportunities (10% to 20% uplift)
    • Content/Ad replacement can be made in real time
  • Future-proof Investment
    • Next-generation capability built on existing, proven technology
    • Utilizes modern, industry-proven technology (SCTE130/VAST, ESNI, HTTP)
    • Ad substitution can be programmatic or algorithmic
    • Broad support for devices and formats, including HLS, DASH, and Smooth Streaming
    • Small “compute” footprint that can be virtualized 
  • Streamlined, simplified operations
    • Single platform to provide derivative broadcast (including ATSC 3.0) streams and OTT services
    • Simplified creation of derivative broadcast transport streams (alternate content and/or ads) from a single program stream
    • Rich telemetry for operational monitoring
    • Broadcast Quality-of-Experience across all screens
    • No need to maintain multiple traffic and automation lists
    • Runs on commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) hardware