streaming

Rough Waters? Downstream Effects from the Transition to Streaming Via Smart TVs

David Tice Consultant, HUB Entertainment Research

Justin FrommHead of Insights & Thought Leadership, Samsung Ads

Justin Fromm from Samsung Ads and David Tice of HUB Entertainment Research discussed how consumer behavior is changing due to greater Smart TV penetration and usage. Streaming has become the default method of watching TV for a large swath of viewers. Streaming audiences have also increasingly become more receptive to advertising. Another important trend, Smart TV operating systems (OEMs) are constantly upgraded and made easier to use. As a result, home screen interactions continue to grow. Home screens have played a significant role in content discovery, although TV brand is a moderating factor. Home screens have even helped accelerate the rise of FAST services. In an era of constant churn, coming up in a home screen search and having an advertising model or tier have become critical to retention. Key takeaways:
  • Two-thirds of people in all TV households use a CTV to stream content.
  • Home screen usage is up 140% due to manufacturers consistently improving the user experience and helping viewers find content.
  • Nearly two-thirds of Smart TV users spend most of their time with streaming. In 2022, 70% of all viewing minutes were streamed, and 62% of viewers spent more than half of their time with streaming content.
  • In Q4 of 2023, 64% of respondents said they would rather watch ads and save money on a subscription, up 7% from Q4 of 2022. Ad tolerance has been stable over the last three years.
  • All streaming was up 22% in 2023. AVOD was up 50%, while SVOD use was down 7%. Home screen use was up 117%, and deep link use was up 59% from 2020.
  • Content discovery occurs about 50% of the time from the TV’s home screen, and 50% from an app’s home screen. This varied substantially by brand. For instance, only 38% of TCL owners (bottom of the batch) found content from the home screen.
  • While most found shows from TV promos (61%) in the last year, 17% of respondents found their favorite new show through their TVs’ home screen.
  • Advertising to at-risk audiences on the TVs’ home screen increased retention by a factor of eight.
  • In the last two years, FAST services increased 16%, which was 6% faster than the two years prior. The number one reason people used a FAST app was, they found it on their TV’s home screen (36%).

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How Streaming Release Models Impact Viewing Behaviors

Rebecca FineAssociate Director, Marketing Insights, Samba TV

Cole StrainVP, Head of R&D, Samba TV

An examination of the top H1 2023 streaming shows for household viewership found that original streaming content captures audiences, according to Rebecca Fine and Cole Strain of Samba TV. Bingeing behavior is a significant household viewership change as viewers have shifted from linear to streaming TV consumption. When given the choice, viewers prefer to binge. Seventy-two percent of U.S. adults identify themselves as binge watchers. A consistent trend across viewership for streaming program premieres was that 44% of viewers watched the program in the first four days, and 78% watched the program by day 15. Bingeable shows are more likely to be completed and have higher average retention between season premiere and finale. Forty-five percent of households will finish the whole season when the season drops in bulk, but retention drops to 35% when the show is released weekly. Netflix’s propensity for the bulk release model means that more of its shows get fully consumed. Rebecca and Cole analyzed the top 50 streaming programs and found that most platforms have a high percentage of households who only watch only one show. However, 73% of viewers watch more than one top show on Netflix. Key takeaways:
  • Households like to binge. Forty-seven percent of viewing households binged top bulk release shows in H1 2023.
  • Binge watchers are more likely to watch platforms that release content this way.
  • Seventy percent of millennials are more likely to keep a subscription to streaming services that release shows in bulk.
  • Bingeability might be more important than buzz when it comes to watching a show from the premiere to finale.

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Linear vs. Streaming: Current State of Creative and Media

Nicole Lawless DesJardins, Ph.D.Sr. Director Data Science, iSpot.tv

Leslie Wood, Ph.D.CRO, iSpot.tv

Leslie Wood and Nicole Lawless DesJardins, both of iSpot.tv, provided an overview of advertising trends in linear and streaming over the last two years in terms of ad creative, campaign and measurement. They defined linear as any content purchased on a national schedule and noted that variations exist across industries. Among their findings:
  • Streaming creatives outnumbered linear 2:1 during 2022 and 2023, and the share of streaming creatives increased in 2023.
  • In terms of creative rotation, linear creatives were on air five times longer during 2022 and 2023 than streaming creative. On linear, a smaller set of creatives will rotate on and off for over a year while on streaming, there are many creatives and each creative runs for two months.
  • The majority of impressions are on linear, but there has been a 24% year-over-year increase in streaming impressions. There are also variations depending on seasons and industries.
  • During 2022-2023, the vast majority of the campaigns in both years were linear only or linear first; however, streaming only, streaming first and mixed campaigns saw significant growth year-over-year.
Key takeaways:
  • Ad creative: Creatives ran for a shorter period of time on streaming compared to linear platforms during 2022-2023.
  • Campaign: Across industries, brands were increasingly leveraging streaming on top of traditional linear TV buys. Linear-only campaigns have declined and there have been increases in mixed and streaming-first campaigns, along with the emergence of streaming-only campaigns.
  • As much as 57% of a campaign’s audience is exposed to the campaign on both streaming and linear TV.
  • Measurement: Linear generated higher reach and frequency per campaign compared to streaming.
  • In 2023, linear’s reach surpassed streaming’s reach across industries, and average frequency is nearly 2.5x higher on linear.
  • The sweet spot of frequency on streaming is approximately four and is less variable than linear due to better targeting and frequency control within the streaming environment.

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Big Data helps solve for Fragmented TV Viewing

James AlexanderProduct Director – Measurement, Inscape

Rich GuinnessAssociate Director, Data Licensing, Inscape

James Alexander and Rich Guinness at Inscape utilized big data to uncover current trends in TV viewing. Streaming continues to cut into linear. Ad supported platforms are growing more popular. People’s thirst for new subscriptions has plateaued. Streaming viewers churn constantly, following the content they want to watch from one platform to another. Bingeing occurs on both linear and streaming, but those who use both binge the most. In today’s environment, new streaming apps grow quickly in both viewership and minutes viewed. Even though they are still a small slice of the pie, FAST apps continue to grow at a rapid pace. Key takeaways:
  • Over the last three years, there’s been a 10% increase in those whose only TV experience is streaming.
  • In Q4 2023, 6.5% of Vizio monitored TV viewers no longer watched cable or satellite, up from 4% in Q4 2022. That number is still growing.
  • The average number of native apps or all apps viewed on CTV (including YouTube) has plateaued at 5.5. This number is not increasing, which is due to churn.
  • Bingeing occurs evenly between linear and streaming, but those who have both are doing it the most. This is likely due to when people miss a few episodes of a favorite show on linear, then hop onto the streaming app to catch up.
  • FAST apps, the “new cable,” are growing rapidly. Fifteen percent of first app opens are a FAST app, and 72% of these viewers are not watching on an MVPD.
  • In their case study, 87% of SVOD users also watch a FAST app, which suggests that viewers are willing to pay top dollar for the right content—a finding that bucks current thinking.

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How We Watch: Examining the Shifting Trends in TV Habits

Mike BrooksGlobal Head of Business Development and Partnerships, LG Ad Solutions

Mike Brooks of LG Ad Solutions described the current rebalancing among CTV users leaving subscription services to embrace ad supported streaming platforms. The trend continues at a brisk pace which spells good news for advertisers. CTV offers many opportunities and as ad supported grows, more viewers suddenly become reachable. People take a significant amount of time to select what they want to watch on CTV, LG’s survey found, and are equally driven to content from their TV’s home screen as from the home screen of their favorite streaming app. This creates an opportunity to help people find content. Most viewers are also doing something on their personal device while watching, which offers shoppable TV opportunities as well as the ability to connect one’s digital and TV brands in dynamic ways. Key takeaways:
  • LG found that 93% of respondents interact with a CTV, and 80% are using some form of ad supported TV. Of them, two-thirds (63%) prefer the ad supported to the subscription model.
  • Subscription cycling is the norm with 59% of respondents saying that they are willing to cancel a subscription-based platform after finishing the content that got them to sign up.
  • The shift from SVOD to AVOD is predicted to continue: 29% of respondents are expected to remove a subscription CTV service from their household within the next 12 months, while 29% will add a free, ad supported CTV service in that same timeframe.
  • A lot of time is being spent on selecting what to watch, five minutes 42 seconds on average, their survey found, between when the screen is turned on and when a piece of content is selected.
  • People discover content equally between the home screen (40%) and the homepage of a specific app (40%).
  • LG also found that 96% are media multi-tasking while they watch TV, usually with a mobile device or laptop. Of these, 48% are engaging with social media, 46% are gaming and 42% are shopping.
  • Shoppable TV is the future: 53% of respondents said they wished all TV ads had a quick option to buy the product, 51% said they wished they could shop using their CTV and 63% said they wished they could see their local store’s inventory on their TV. Twenty-nine percent had even purchased something through their TV before.
  • Of likely voters, 65% prefer streaming to linear TV, and 82% of those streaming with ads are open to political ads outside of political content.

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Forecasting & Optimizing Reach in a PII Compliant Measurement Ecosystem

Spencer LambertVP, Product & Partnership Success, datafuelX

Matthew WeinmanSr. Director, Advanced Advertising Product Management, TelevisaUnivision

Reach and frequency planning requires access to unique viewership data, which has become increasingly restricted due to identity restrictions. However, challenges exist with panel-only measurement, including the undercounting of Hispanic and Spanish language coverage, stated Matthew Weinman (TelevisaUnivision). Panel data undercounts Hispanics audiences by upwards of 20%, even for broad demographics. The benefits of big data exist across audience planning, viewership measurement and outcomes. Excessive frequency can be limited while maintaining or expanding reach, as well as improving ROAS. However, there are barriers to working with big data, including PII compliance. Additionally, the size and scale of big data leads to lengthy ID forecast times and computing costs. Spencer Lambert (datafuelX) presented details of their approach to ID-level forecasting which included their reach and frequency clustering methodology. Key takeaways:
  • Advantages of clustering methodology over identity methodology for reach and frequency:
  • Efficiency and accuracy: Delivers comparable accuracy metrics
  • Lower error rates: Seven percent for cluster reach forecasts vs. 20% error rate on identity-scaled reach forecasts
  • Cross-platform reach and frequency: By scaling cluster assignments to digital IDs, this methodology can empower cross-platform management and optimization
  • Lower compute time and costs
  • PII compliant: Preserves the use of identity-level planning

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CTV Ads: Viewer Attention & Brand Metrics

Rohan CastelinoCMO, IRIS.TV

Mike TreonProgrammatic Lead, PMG

Representing the Alliance for Video Level Contextual Advertising (AVCA), Rohan Castelino (IRIS.TV) and Mike Treon (PMG) examined research conducted with eye tracking and attention computing company, Tobii. The research endeavor focused on the impact of AI-enabled contextual targeting on viewer attention and brand perception in CTV. Beginning the discussion, Rohan examined challenges with CTV advertising. He noted that advances in machine learning (ML) have empowered advertisers to explore AI enabled contextual targeting, which analyzes video frame by frame, uses computer vision, natural language, understanding, sentiment analysis, etc., to create standardized contextual and brand suitability segments. Highlighting a study of participants in U.S. households, the research specifically aimed to understand if AI-enabled contextual targeting outperformed standard demo and pub-declared metadata in CTV. Additionally, they wanted to understand if brand suitability had an impact on CTV viewers’ attention and brand perception. Results from the research found that AI-enabled contextual targeting outperformed standard demo and pub-declared metadata in CTV and increased viewer engagement. In closing, Mike provided the marketers’ perspective on the use of AI-enabled contextual targeted ads and its practical applications. Key takeaways:
  • Challenges with CTV advertising: Ads can be repetitive, offensive and sometimes irrelevant, in addition to ads being placed in problematic context.
  • In addition, buyers are unsure who saw the ad or what type of content the ad appeared within. A recent study by GumGum showed that 20% of CTV ad breaks in children’s content were illegal (e.g., ads shown for alcohol and casino gambling).
  • Advertisers have begun experimentation with contextual targeting in CTV, as a path to relevance.
  • A study conducted with U.S. participants that examined the effects of watching 90 minutes of control and test advertisements, using a combination of eye tracking, microphones, interviews and surveys to gather data found that:
    • AI-enabled contextual targeting attracts and holds attention (e.g., 4x fewer ads missed, 22% more ads seen from the beginning and 15% more total ad attention).
    • AI-enabled contextual targeting drives brand metrics (e.g., 2x higher unaided recall and 4x higher aided recall).
    • AI-enabled contextual targeting increases brand interest (e.g., 42% more interested in the product, 38% gained a deeper understanding).
  • Research to understand if brand suitability had an impact on CTV viewers’ attention and brand perception found that:
    • Poor brand suitability makes CTV viewers tune out ads and reduces brand favorability (e.g., 54% were less interested in the product, 31% liked the brand less).
    • AI-enabled contextual targeted ads are as engaging as the show.

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If You Stream It, They Will Come: Marketing Through Streaming Platforms

  • MSI

Livestreaming platforms and social shopping in general have grown into marketing channels that can be very lucrative for several different categories. However, livestreaming stands apart from “normal” social media in the fact that influencers are less reliant on corporate sponsors, as they have their own customer base that they rely on. So, how can marketers be successful within these channels? This Marketing Science Institute (MSI) working paper illustrates what forces are at play with livestreaming and how to balance them for the benefit of all parties.

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How Viewers are Changing

A new LA Media Research Council event featured insights from 2023 research, new studies on changes in behaviors and discussions about 2024 priorities. Read more »