Automated TV ad sales are gaining traction, slowly

NBCUniversal and Disney-owned ESPN are dabbling in automating the sale of their television ad inventory, but the industry as a whole has not been quick to adopt the technology that is so popular for online ads. Part of the challenge is that TV has an established system of upfront ad buying that leaves little room for other forms of ad buying. "In online, programmatic hit the scene and exploded. In TV it hit the scene and it's been a slow burn," said David Cohen, chief investment officer at Universal McCann.

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