May 01 2023
Media Coverage

NewFronts: Amazon Has Bigger Ad Plans For Season 2 of ‘Thursday Night Football’

Adds, VideoAmp for audience measurement

By Jon Lafayette

Amazon is looking to make its Thursday Night Football a bigger deal for viewers and advertisers.

The online retail giant said this season Thursday Night Football sponsors will be able to send different creative messages to different targeted audience groups within the same 30-second commercial position.

For example, an automaker could send a sports car spot to younger viewers, an SUV ad to sports and outdoors enthusiasts and a more general brand spot to the remaining viewers.

The audience-based creative capability will be available during pre- and post game shows, as well as year two of the Amazon Music Live concert series streamed after TNF

This season, the concert series will include performances by A$AP Rocky, Lil Wayne, Kane Brown, Anitta, and Megan Thee Stallion.  

Amazon is also providing advertisers with more clickable ad formats. Fire TV viewers can click a “send to phone” or “send to email” button with their remote that will give the viewer links to a brand’s Amazon store or product page.

Amazon expects the new capabilities to be particularly useful when Amazon streams the NFL’s first Black Friday game on the day after Thanksgiving.  That game will be available free to all viewers, not just Amazon Prime members.

“Where we think there’s a lot of opportunity is the ability for streaming TV to seamlessly bridge content to commerce,” Alan Moss, Amazon VP, Global Advertising Sales, told Broadcasting+Cable.

“In our upfront discussions so far we’re working backwards from brands’ desire to not only see their messages at the heart of premium content and offering great customer experiences, but also connecting the dots downstream with them to have meaningful business outcomes for these brands.”

Moss said being able to use multiple creative executions in a single spot on Thursday Night Football was a first for NFL games at scale. “It’s going to be great for customers because they’re going to see more relevant messages and it should lead to better advertiser outcomes as well.”

Adding Data Sources For Advertisers

Last year, during Amazon’s first year as the exclusive national home of Thursday Night Football, Amazon worked with Nielsen to provide audience guarantees. This year, advertisers will also be able to get audience data from iSpot and VideoAmp.

Amazon will be transacting on Nielsen during 2023 but expects to give advertisers the option of transacting on or VideoAmp in 2024, Moss said.

“Expanding iSpot’s ability to measure advertising on Amazon Ads goes beyond enabling a faster, more transparent, ad-centric approach for its customers,” said Sean Muller, CEO at iSpot. “Today’s announcement underlines our commitment to brands, which need to understand advertising in the context of the broader TV and streaming landscape and gain a clear view of audience viewership inside and outside the home to justify and optimize investments.”

“This is a milestone that highlights the industry’s growing demand for advanced measurement and cross-platform solutions which are crucial for advertisers. We’re excited to work with Amazon Ads to provide advertisers accurate measurement with valuable insights to help them maximize their return on ad spend,” added Michael Parkes, President, VideoAmp.

Amazon will be making sure media buyers are aware of the scale and reach it offers. Moss said that Amazon properties now reach an average monthly audience of 155 million people, or six out of every 10 adults in the U.S. 

Many of those viewers aren’t easy to reach with linear TV.  According to a Nielsen study, Amazon streaming TV campaigns reach an average of 10.9% incremental viewers to linear TV and 72% of Amazon streaming TV viewers are not watching linear TV.

Amazon will be making Amazon Marketing Cloud audiences available to advertisers. Marketers will be able to combine their own first party data with Amazon’s in a privacy-safe clean-room environment to improve the targeting of their ads.

Buyer should be able to activate the AMC audiences in the Amazon DSP with just a few clicks, Moss said.

Ad agency Buy Box Experts used the feature to help their client SimpliSafe refine its audience strategy. That helped grow the brand’s return on ad spend by 109% and reduce the brand’s cost-per-unit-sold by 65%, Amazon said.

Freevee, Amazon’s ad-supported streaming service, is adding interactive pause ads that include a call to action for viewers.

Amazon Advertising said it can now help advertisers reach 155 million people monthly between its own properties and Amazon Publisher Direct. It said that Prime Video has become the most subscribed to streaming service in the U.S.

Viewers of Amazon’s Twitch watched 1.3 trillion minutes of content last year and 70% of those viewers are between the ages of 18 and 34.

Fire TV recently surpassed 200 million units. Fire TV unveiled Fire TV Channels, its new, ad-supported TV  experience 

Amazon Live will now produce shoppable livestream content with publishers and media brands, in addition to its popular influencer content. Customers can currently watch exclusive shoppable content from Tastemade, including  episodes of Struggle Meals, and starting in late-May, viewers will be able to shop live while watching exclusive content from Revolt, the multi-platform media company from Sean “Diddy” Combs.