Industry Insights: Our April Must Reads

May 2, 2018

“April is a promise that May is bound to keep”. This quote by author Hal Borland bodes well for connected TV (CTV) advertisers, as we find ourselves in the midst of the upfronts season. The April news circuit ran strong coverage of the over-the-top landscape, as it becomes increasingly clear that CTV has gone mainstream.

1. Quartz: The streaming video wars are just getting started

More people now subscribe to Netflix than cable TV in the US. The number of traditional US TV viewers is steadily ticking down while the number of streaming-video viewers is trending up. TV advertising, the lifeblood of the TV industry, has hit a wall. And the number of cord-cutters, who ditched traditional TV services, and cord-nevers, who never had them to begin with, are soaring in the country.”

While Netflix sparked the transition to streaming video 20 years ago, CTV is finally becoming the mainstream method of consuming content. Particularly in the US, the quick rise in CTV adoption should be a signal to innovative marketers to get on board. As we find ourselves in upfronts season, it’s crucial that forward-thinking brands push budget to this growing and powerful channel.

2. Wall Street Journal: Who’s Watching Digital Video? A Diverse, Expanding Audience, IAB Says

“Digital video publishers are aiming to pry loose more dollars from advertisers who have been slow to shift their budgets from TV to new video formats. This year, upfront digital ad spending is estimated to grow 25% to $3.64 billion, according to eMarketer. Upfront TV ad spending, meanwhile, is expected to increase 3% to $20.3 billion.”

As we head into the NewFronts this week, there’s no question that digital video should be top-of-mind for every advertiser. Not only is the streaming audience growing but it represents a more diverse portion of the population, as roughly 43% of viewership is nonwhite compared with 36% of the total U.S. population. Additionally, these viewers deviate from traditional prime-time TV viewership, consuming digital video in their own “personal prime times” –making any moment prime time for the advertisers hoping to reach them.

3. Adweek: As TV viewing habits change, local broadcasters turn to live streaming

“’Going over-the-top opens our content up to a much broader audience,’ says Vea. ‘As a local broadcaster, that’s our goal.’ At the same time, she notes, the station hit an over-the-air advertising ceiling and felt it could afford to experiment with new ways of earning ad revenue.

Since CTV allows advertisers to buy audiences in real time, as opposed to paying a pre-determined (and typically large) amount for content slots up front, the advertising playing field is leveling off. Local advertisers can now take a shot at larger, more-premium ad-slots, bidding based on what they’re willing to pay for the exact audiences they want to reach.