Adjust at IAB Tech Lab: How CTV is changing user behavior and advertising
Connected TV (CTV) is one of the fastest-growing digital advertising platforms, with ad spend for CTV expected to reach $30 billion by 2025. More than 80% of US TV households have at least one connected TV device, and the pendulum is continuing to swing away from cable — millions of people in the U.S. are ‘cord-cutting’ every year. As audience demands shift, advertising agencies and TV networks must adapt their strategies accordingly to remain competitive.
At the IAB Tech Lab’s virtual event “CTV & Video Advertising: Growing with Standards,” Adjust’s Lead Product Strategist, Gijsbert Pols, discussed the rapidly evolving landscape of CTV and the challenges advertisers and marketers are facing as part of its evolution — along with the opportunities. You can watch the webinar in the video below from 2:15:57 or read on for the summary.
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What is CTV, and how is it evolving?
In addition to television devices with built in smart capabilities, CTV also incorporates any television that is connected to the internet via devices like gaming consoles and streaming devices. It’s also essential to understand the difference between CTV and Over-The-Top (OTT). CTV platforms like Roku and Amazon Fire TV are the operating systems for CTV devices, while OTT media services like Hulu and Prime Video deliver digital content to consumers through streaming technologies and functions on CTVs (and other devices like desktops and mobile phones).
What these definitions don’t encapsulate is how this all impacts consumer behavior. Traditional linear television was straightforward. Consumers were passive viewers and only had one device with one purpose — to watch shows or movies offered at specific times. But now, because of CTV devices, platforms, and OTT, the way we interact with TV screens has completely changed.
Watching TV has become a multi-device experience with consumers using their mobile phones simultaneously, or “second-screening”. Many CTV platforms even allow consumers to use their smartphones as remote controls. In addition to mobile phones, speakers are also being integrated to CTV and many more devices are expected in the near future. It’s no longer just about watching content, the whole experience of consuming CTV involves multiple activities, making consumers more engaged and assertive.
When thinking about CTV categorically, streaming and watching of movies and shows is the most obvious form of content that comes to mind. But various other categories are also gaining prominence, including faith-based apps, games, educational apps, and health and fitness. This is a strong indication of the move toward engaging with televisions and CTV/OTT apps in a more active manner, and for many more functions than passive viewing.
What CTV means for advertisers and marketers
As CTV becomes multi-device and multi-purpose with an active and engaged audience, it presents an exciting opportunity for marketers and advertisers to create more innovative and smarter campaigns. Some advertisers have already adopted new ad formats such as ‘pause ads,’ which appear when the user hits the pause button during a stream and offers the opportunity for contextual targeting. Since the vast majority of consumers engage in dual screening, mobile marketers can integrate QR codes in commercials, facilitating the direct download of apps. Advertisers have also experimented with inserting ads into television content, and because of the digital nature of CTV, the ads can be localized and even personalized.
New ad formats mean huge new swathes of data to attribute and measure, making CTV a crucial part of the marketing mix for many teams. Data from CTV ads enables mobile marketers to understand which campaigns are driving installs, to improve ROI/ROAS, and to measure their impact on other channels. However, analyzing users and their behavior within the CTV and streaming landscape comes with its own set of challenges. Marketers and advertisers need to be able to measure performance across multiple devices, and homogenize their data.
To learn more about the CTV ecosystem, you can read our Ultimate How-To Guide made in partnership with DCMN here. For information on how you can leverage the channel to serve your brand with actionable and measurable results and turn CTV into a performance channel, learn about our CTV AdVision solution here.