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Disney signs ad-tech deal with The Trade Desk

The agreement will assist Disney in achieving its objective of shifting more than 50% of all advertising sales to automated procurement

Walt Disney’s ad-sales unit has struck a new deal with The Trade Desk with the aim to enhance its sphere of advertisement market.

The pact will allow brands to target automated ads across Disney properties using data matched on the back end from Disney and The Trade Desk.

The agreement comes as Disney prepares to launch an ad-supported version of Disney+, the streaming service that offers a number of high-quality series and movies that many top marketers want to align with.

Disney is recognised best for its flagship content franchises that ranges from Marvel and Star Wars to Mickey and Minnie Mouse.

The Trade Desk, a global ad tech company, has developed an ability to sell ads in real time based on targeting algorithms aimed at specific groups of consumers.

Disney will use The Trade Desk’s technology to boost data activation in order to make ads reach specific audiences, according to a new pact unveiled on Tuesday.

However, the agreement was “specific to Disney’s current ad-supported properties,” according to a Trade Desk spokesman.

The Trade Desk also put out a tweet, confirming the news,

“Today we announced a first-of-its kind integration with @disneyadsales’ proprietary Audience Graph, powered further through interoperability with Unified ID 2.0, to activate audiences at scale,” the tweet read.

Rita Ferro, President of Disney Advertising Sales, said it would implement “this expanded capability with advertisers over the next several months, while setting the stage to support interoperability across all demand partners and platforms.”

Furthermore, Ferro, in a statement, said, “We have spent years investing in our data and technology strategy to create innovative solutions for advertisers to engage their audiences with greater precision and accuracy in a privacy-focused way.”

“This first-to-market capability sets the stage to empower access to the Disney portfolio, validated by powerful audience insights, in a way that’s automated and accessible.”

Disney will contribute its own first-party data about its audiences, and will also use similar data from The Trade Desk, which is part of the Unified ID 2.0 framework and the hope is that media buyers and advertisers will be able to find more inventory on which to bid across Disney's portfolio.

The agreement will assist Disney in achieving its objective of shifting more than 50% of all advertising sales to automated procurement.

Disney last year said that it aimed to sell more than half of its advertisements automatically in the next four years. More than 40% of the advertising inventory that Disney sold during its upfront advertising sales event the previous year was automated.

Disney has been expecting that most of its ad sales will come through “addressable” inventory, or ads that can be earmarked for specific consumer segments. 

Meanwhile, Aaron LaBerge, President and Chief Technology Officer, Disney Media & Entertainment Distribution, in a statement said, “The growth of our relationship with The Trade Desk is a milestone in addressability and automated buying at scale, and the latest step as we use technology to enable advertisers to buy once to deliver everywhere across Disney.”

The agreement comes as the streaming advertising market becomes more competitive. Disney has long been the industry leader in digital television advertising, but now major streaming platforms, including Netflix, are looking to incorporate digital advertising into offerings.

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