Bid4Spots launches cable advertising marketplace


Bid4Spots ( unveiled a new online marketplace for cable television advertising – becoming the first to organize cable advertising nationwide down to the neighborhood, bringing advertisers and cable systems together in a way that makes the process of buying and selling cable TV ads more convenient and cost-effective for both parties.

Offering local cable TV airtime at discounted rates for the following broadcast week, Bid4Spots gives both sides relief in this sluggish economy – great rates for advertisers, a much-needed new revenue stream for local cable operators, and a flexible approach to buying and selling with no hassles or long-term commitments. Bid4Spots created this new marketplace in response to advertiser demand, adapting the reverse auction model that has successfully transformed the way last-minute radio airtime is bought and sold.

Bid4Spots will host an online reverse auction every Thursday, in which advertisers will make known their intention to buy airtime within certain parameters for the following week, and the relevant cable systems compete for that business – bidding against each other to drive the rates down. The first auction will be June 11.

Individual cable systems will be invited to participate only when an advertiser has already expressed interest in reaching that particular audience. A cable operator’s usual risks are eliminated using the Bid4Spots marketplace – all advertisers pay in advance, and make their spots available for review before the cable system decides to bid. Each cable system can decide which inventory it wants to make available each week; there are no obligations and no contracts to sign.

Advertisers predetermine the price they’re willing to pay per thousand consumers reached. They set a price ceiling, and the cable systems bid against each other to win the business – bidding the rates down. Advertisers get premium inventory at great rates, the ability to buy time just a week before airtime, transparency into the actual costs of their media buys, and the ability to target by demographic, geography or specific cable network.

Advertisers essentially create their own custom network, encompassing any combination of local systems, to reach consumers using their own precisely drawn national, regional or local footprint. For example, a company wanting to drive traffic to its online luggage store can choose to target cable systems nationwide that insert ads into the Travel Channel, or can choose to target all cable systems in a handful of key cities, or any combination of factors. With this capability, Bid4Spots is bringing the scale and efficiency of a typical national network buy to the local level – with the cost efficiencies of a reverse auction marketplace.