Sook: For All Advertisers, Local TV Is The Best Medium


NEW YORK — In a speech delivered as a welcome to attendees of the daylong TVB Forward conference at Pier 60 along Manhattan’s Hudson River side, Nexstar Media Group President/CEO Perry Sook, who also serves as the Television Advertising Bureau’s Chairman, highlighted the strength of the local broadcast TV industry.

Sook also took note of what steps are needed by local TV broadcast companies in order to remain competitive, while declaring that there’s no better venue for all types of advertisers.

In his opening remarks, Sook immediately spoke of the importance — and influence — of UHFs and VHFs across the nation.

“Today, local broadcast television remains the most powerful place to be within the media and advertising ecosphere,” he said. “Our strong local platforms command the greatest share of audience reach within a market— and as the most trusted medium among viewers, with a brand safe environment, and with the greatest influence on consumer purchasing and voting decisions — local broadcast television continues to be the leading provider of ROI-driven marketing solutions for brand managers, advertisers and political campaigns.”

He then spoke highly of local news programming and how, in times of emergency, “our local stations also take the lead, serving as relied-upon resources for essential, lifesaving news broadcast over-the-air and delivered online through our web and mobile apps. When crisis strikes our communities— local broadcasters will always answer the call.”

Sook turned to the TVB 2017 Purchase Funnel study, conducted by GfK for the lobbying group, by noting that research confirmed — once again — that for all age demographics, “television continues to be the most important influencer across all stages of the funnel, from consumer awareness through actual purchase … To put it briefly, our brands strongly resonate with millennials and no skinny bundle or OTT service can successfully go to market without our content included in its package.”

He concluded by making the proclamation that local TV is the best medium for local and national advertisers.

“The unmatched credibility of our local platforms enables us – better than any other medium – to help local and national businesses sell products and services and political campaigns to get their messages out to their constituents,” Sook said.

Sure, there are competitive threats and shifting consumer habits, which he noted. But, Sook added, open APIs and the coming of ATSC 3.0 gives local TV a better chance to do something about it.

“To remain the number one choice across all screens and devices, we must come together as an industry to develop standards-based open APIs, and implement new processes to meet the rapidly changing needs and demands of our viewers and clients,” Sook said. “We must also advance the way we transact business by creating a more efficient marketplace for advertisers to access spot inventory in a manner that is cost effective for the buyer, while maintaining the value and integrity of our product.”

— Reporting from Renee Cassis, in New York