As consumers increasingly “cut the cord” and move away from traditional linear television providers, some advertisers may wonder whether they need to explore other advertising platforms.
There has been a significant amount of hyperbole about the “death of television” and the effects that it will have on the advertising industry. When looking at the data, however, it becomes clear that the TV advertising market isn’t actually dying at all. Instead, it is seeing an upswing in digital advertising opportunities through over-the-top (OTT) and connected TV (CTV) options.
Even linear advertising isn’t truly dying, as there are still a number of consumers who are perfectly happy keeping their cords uncut. When combined with the opportunities presented by OTT and similar advanced television platforms, it starts to appear that the future of TV advertising is rather healthy.
The Shifting Advertising Model
As consumers move away from the linear cable model to Internet-delivered television and video-on-demand content, there is a need for ad buyers to shift their spending to accommodate this change.
One of the most important aspects of advertising is that the ad needs to be wherever the viewer is, which in this case means that there is an increasing need to advertise with digital Internet-delivered content. The speed of this shift and the degree to which the ad budget moves can depend on a number of factors, but even those demographics that are heavily invested in traditional cable are still becoming increasingly likely to view digital and on-demand content as well.
Advantages of OTT
OTT platforms offer a number of advantages that can help attract viewers away from strictly linear television consumption.
One of the largest of these is convenience, as OTT content is available not only on smart TVs or televisions with set-top boxes but is also available on tablets, phones and other connected devices. OTT content is also more likely to offer opportunities for viewing content on demand after its original air date and may even feature bonus content, rewind features and other options that aren’t possible with a traditional linear TV stream. Some OTT platforms even offer the option for users to record programming via cloud-based DVR services for viewing at their convenience.
For marketers and ad buyers, the advantages of OTT platforms are coupled with additional opportunities to place highly targeted ads that are more likely to resonate with viewers.
Since the ads are targeted to the individual rather than the channel, viewers watching the same content can receive ads that are significantly different and tailored specifically to what might best appeal to them.
Balancing TV Ad Budgets
OTT content will continue to grow in importance moving forward, but there will still be a market for linear content for at least several years to come.
As such, it is important for companies and agencies to balance TV advertising budgets between the two. This balance will depend in part on the specific products or brands being advertised and the audience that is most likely to be interested in those ads; older generations are more likely to consume significant amounts of linear content, while younger generations are more likely to consume little or no linear content at all.
Likewise, regions with widespread high-speed Internet is more likely to have significant OTT usage compared to regions that are limited to dial-up and DSL. Good market analysis can help you determine how best to split ad budgets to find the perfect balance between OTT and linear TV ads.