WideOrbit’s Zinsmeister Greets ‘Nervous’ Industry With Buy-Side Automation – Beet.TV

It is the company that has long offered the infrastructure for local TV networks’ ad management around the US. Now WideOrbit wants to service ad buyers, too.

The San Francisco-based company offers a software platform that handles scheduling, billing, content management and invoicing for mostly local TV ads.

“It really is the infrastructure of the supply side,” says Mike Zinsmeister, WideOrbit chief revenue officer, in this video interview with Beet.TV. “Now that we’ve done that, we’re working with buy-side systems, and indirectly buyers, to try to make that available.”

Zinsmeister says servicing the buy side will begin in the next month or two, though WideOrbit will begin by “walking” slowly in to the new arena. He acknowledges making the flip will be challenging.

“Disrupting incumbents is a tricky thing,” he adds. “It makes people nervous when there are new folks that are coming in,when we change our position from just being a supply-side system of record to one that’s helping them to transact against their inventory. Those things makes folks nervous.”

“But there’s also a healthy dose of appreciation for it, and a lot of energy and enthusiasm. We don’t sell it, we don’t buy it and then package it up and sell it. We really just try to make it accessible as an option to sell.”

WideOrbit is bringing workflow automation to spot TV advertising in a bid to stop money leaking out into other forms of media.

It wants to speed up the old manual system in which an ad buyer passes campaign requirements to a buying representative, on to stations and back to the buyer, which Zinsmeister takes three-and-a-half-days.

Instead, he says, his system aims to make TV ad buying more like travel planning on Kayak or Orbitz. “They’ve actually gotten the buy- and sell-side systems to talk, and that’s what we’re doing,” he adds.

This video is part of a series from the Beet Retreat in the City, “We’re Going Local!” hosted by GroupM Worldwide and sponsored by Amobee, Comcast Spotlight, TVSquared and WideOrbit.   Please visit this page for additional segments. 


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