While ABC late night talk show host Jimmy Kimmel once again drew gasps for his jabs at his employer at the upfronts this week (anyone remember 2002 when he joked that then bosses Lloyd Braun and Susan Lyne would be gone by the time his show aired?) it looks like the big news out of this year’s fall TV preview had nothing to do with the big four networks. Google (NSDQ: GOOG) TV Ads has deals with several marketers, who have pledged roughly “seven figures” to the spot buying platform for the fall, reports Daisy Whitney in THR.
Deutsch and Saatchi & Saatchi, along with like advertisers like Coldwell Banker, have already agreed to run ads through Google’s system starting in September. While a few million dollars is still not enough to make the networks worry, even in this dismal ad market, it suggests that Google TV Ads could wind as a player in the broadcast game after all. The unit has struggled to attract marketers and TV network agreements since exiting beta last summer, though it has managed deals with EchoStar (NSDQ: SATS), NBC Universal’s cable channels and Bloomberg TV.
Originally conceived as a system that would let marketers and agencies buy TV ads through an automated system, Google TV Ads is quickly evolving. This latest development comes barely a week after Google TV Ads handled distribution for the search giant’s first-ever TV spots. It’s also a month since Google TV Ads started testing placement of marketers’ spots on broadband videos of TV shows.