Upfronts: Fox Takes Portfolio Ad Sales Approach, Holds Back on Scheduled Reveal

Breaking with tradition, Fox Corp. did not announce the 2022-23 schedule for its broadcast network at a press briefing last week. Instead, the company focused moving inventory across its entertainment, sports and news offerings and free ad-supported service Tubi.

FOX Entertainment CEO Charlie Collier told reporters during a conference call that the company decided to delay announcing the schedule because it is taking “a new portfolio approach based on how people shop across … linear and digital.” “.

Marianne Gambelli, president of ad sales, marketing and brand partnerships, said during the May 16 call that Fox is ready to do business with timelines for a single property or across its entire portfolio. She noted that with its younger and more diverse audience, Tubi increases the reach of the broadcast and therefore works well with FOX (USA).

The decision not to reveal the fall lineup ahead of time may also have been influenced by FOX Entertainment not teaming up with Walt Disney Co.’s 20th Television, Fox’s former sister studio, for new seasons of the dramas “9-1- 1” has resigned. and “The Inhabitant”. The deals were finalized later in the day, and both shows will air their sixth seasons this fall.

When asked about the softness in the scatter market, Gambelli said Fox is a smaller company than its competitors and doesn’t require the same volume. Fox plans at this point to maintain upfront levels of inventory sold over the last year, but she said such decisions are made in real time.

During the lead time, content providers are attempting to sell linear and digital programs to media agencies and their clients ahead of the upcoming TV season. In Scatter, purchases are secured much closer to a program’s air date, often at prices in excess of what was negotiated during the presale season.

She also said that broadcasting, which has lost rating points to declining viewership as streaming has grown in popularity, becomes even more valuable to advertisers as it remains the best reach tool for marketers. She said the company is seeing interest in its broadcasting ownership and is confident the prices will be there.

There is also interest in better monetization of Tubi, whose audience has grown significantly under Fox’s ownership. Gambelli’s advertising team is making it a priority to “get more volume for Tubi and the prices it deserves.”

Gambelli downplayed a suggestion that challenges lie ahead due to pandemic concerns and supply chain shortages, noting that there has been a lot of uncertainty over the past two years. She said FOX’s audience is younger and less dependent on packaged goods than its competition. Still, the company remains flexible in its approach to business, trying to make the upfront market “more accessible to everyone as conditions keep changing.”

FOX expects strength from tech companies and streaming players. Sports, she said, are capturing large audiences and continue to open up opportunities in sportsbooks, cryptocurrency companies and the financial services category.

During the presentation, Gambelli said the purchase has become more complex, but the company remains committed to keeping the process simple while offering customized solutions.

She pointed to FOX Next, a tool that allows advertisers to target audiences across all business platforms; ONE FOX, which can reach large audiences across all digital properties; and Fox Content Studios, where clients can work directly with production teams to build integrations.

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