At a time when streaming content is growing and “anytime, anywhere” viewing on phones and tablets is common, what does it mean to “watch TV”? Does it always involve a TV set with cable or satellite reception, watching shows from a traditional TV network? Or, do other types of viewing replace “TV” as “TV” in consumers’ mind? As consumer habits evolve to embrace content across multiple platforms, advertisers and brands need to adapt and find new ways to reach target audiences and increase engagement. The following are a few takeaways from this event.
- OTT usage and streaming continue to grow rapidly:
- Ecosystem = Perfect storm: High penetration of broadband; More quality digital video content; Affordable smart TVs and streaming devices; Choice of ad models (Rockwood, Turner)
- Majority of the total US population views TV live, but streaming is approaching a quarter of total television time among younger age cohorts, e.g. 23% of P12-17, 21% of P18-24, 21% of P25-34 (Fuhrer, Nielsen)
- Streaming is often complimentary to pay TV.
- 75% of streamers have cable. (Ramspacher, GfK)
- Only 34% of Connected TV users are Cord Cutters/Nevers. (Bordes, CBS)
- OTT offers opportunities for audience-based TV buys, precision targeting at scale, viewability, a brand safe environment. OTT is a nice bridge to make linear TV better and improve the pitfalls of digital (Horstman, TiVo).
- But lack of uniform measurements and better data are barriers to fully monetizing OTT. Wang, of FuboTV, noted that it would be ideal to have one or two external measurement partners that all agreed on uniform metrics. Steuer of Omnicom stated that “I still don’t have data to power, to buy, and plan to scale.” Rooke and Schafer from the FreeWheel Council recommended that agencies and marketers should not wait for a single measurement standard.
- Let content lead. Start with the best content then select the platform that best reaches your target audience (Mark Marshall, NBCU). It doesn’t really matter where it is. People will go to good content (Alex Wallace, Oath).