AT&T launching its own upfront market to sell addressable ads

AT&T's (NYSE: T) advanced TV advertising division, AdWorks, has announced the formation of a new upfront market to sell addressable inventory.

Beginning in April in New York, the company said, more than 100 "Addressable Upfront" events will take place, "customized for specific advertisers around the country."

The market is modeled after the spring "upfront" market presentations TV have conducted for decades to sell the bulk of their commercial time. AT&T is looking to compete with this traditional market, pitching brands on the opportunity to use its network of around 13,000 advanced pay-TV set-tops to only show impressions to targeted lists of viewers. 

"Our addressable advertising offer maximizes the return on ad spending by matching the right ad with the right household and audience. It's a more meaningful way of doing advertising. We wanted to apply that same strategy to our upfront events," said Jason Brown, VP of national advertising sales, AT&T AdWorks. "Our Addressable Upfronts will maximize the time agencies and advertisers invest with us throughout a busy upfront season."

AT&T is one of several pay-TV companies, including Cablevision (NYSE: CVC) and Dish Network (NASDAQ: DISH), using data from its set-tops to create targeted, "addressable" advertising products. 

Earlier this month, AT&T announced its move into true, automated "programmatic" TV advertising.

AT&T has partnered with ad tech company Videology, with plans to introduce a "private marketplace" for programmatic TV ads on both the U-verse and DirecTV platforms, starting in the third quarter, AT&T confirmed. 

For more:
- read this AT&T press release

Related articles:
AT&T formally announces programmatic marketplace
AT&T's Mike Welch on programmatic, addressable and the coming multi-billion-dollar advanced ad biz
From DAI to programmatic: Why advanced advertising is giving pay-TV operators a reason to stay in the video biz

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