The digital content NewFronts and network upfronts, where media companies show off the best of what's to come for 2016 and 2017 for potential advertisers, have finally wound down. Here's some of the main takeaways.
Quality is key and digital says it has it
Digital media companies especially emphasized that they could make premium-quality content just like TV, and deserved those ad dollars.
BuzzFeed pitched advertisers episodic series like "You Do You" and "Broke." YouTube talked about partnerships with sports leagues like the NBA and kid's shows like "Sesame Street."
Among the hybrids, Vice touted the fact that it will launch 20 channels by the end of the year, saying it was "the fastest growing network in the history of TV." Hulu brought out its creators and original show stars like Mindy Kaling, Amy Pohler and Hugh Laurie.
"This is the challenge from day one five years ago with the (digital content) NewFronts," said Ben Winkler, chief investment officer at ad agency OMD. "Can we match the quality and can we match scale? We don't call it broadcast for nothing."
Winkler admits that for the first few years, NewFront presenters couldn't pretend that they were on the scale of television, so they focused on their quality of content. But, it wasn't on par with TV.
More recently, platforms like YouTube and Hulu have shown that you can have high-quality shows that exist only online.
"The creation of that content seems to be shifting from people in their bedrooms turning the camera on themselves to sophisticated high-investment studio content that you want your brand associated with," said Winkler.
Still, some media buyers are skeptical that all online products are just like what you would see on the small screen.
"Quality short-form video or internet video has suffered from a quality gap," said Charlie Fiordalis, chief digital officer at media agency Media Storm. "I would be wary of making direct comparisons from traditional to digital video when it comes to actual minute-by-minute ratings."