In our recent research survey, TV is Total Video: Predicting OTT and the Future of Video Advertising, 80 percent of respondents said that changing video viewing habits have resulted in the need to serve cross-screen audiences, prompting shifts in video advertising strategies. Of the advertisers surveyed, 100 percent said this was the biggest resulting strategy change for them.
Today, we sat down with Kelly McMahon, SVP of global demand operations at SpotX, for more insight into this trend.
Respondents mostly agree that reaching cross-screen audiences is a requirement, but when it comes to assigning value to those audiences, their opinions are more varied. For instance, 69 percent of content owners say they value OTT and traditional TV audiences differently, while only 44 percent of advertisers agree. What might be contributing to this misalignment?
From what I’ve observed in-market, advertisers do recognize that the value structures of traditional TV and OTT are different. With that in mind, I think the findings of this survey actually illustrate a lack of understanding of why cross-screen audiences should be valued differently rather than a refusal to recognize that they should.
Beyond that, it’s important to consider that the “Advertiser” bucket encompasses many different types of buyers, some of whom may have no reason to consider how the measures of value compare. For instance, agencies often specialize in media buying for a certain delivery point, so a holistic strategy might be irrelevant from their perspective even as they contribute to it for clients who have engaged other resources to buy in other environments.
What tips or strategies can you recommend for advertisers working to develop cross-screen campaigns?
My best advice would be to define your goals, identify the data that’s available in each environment, and leverage it to the fullest extent. Advertisers can activate data partners like Axicom or comScore to apply insights from linear audiences to digital campaigns, enriching their level of engagement with audiences based on the goals they’ve set.
For example, an advertiser looking to drive tune-ins for a new show on linear TV they can tap into linear data to identify households that are already watching similar shows. Members of these households can then be targeted digitally with messages promoting the new show, and cross-device identifiers can be applied after the fact to find out how many of them actually tuned in.
Or, an advertiser looking to increase frequency of messaging can target their linear audiences with a corresponding digital buy. Conversely, those same insights could also be utilized to eliminate a linear audience from a digital campaign, if message frequency isn’t a focus.
However, regardless of approach, advertisers should be prepared to invest in cross-screen advertising. The data available in the OTT environment commands higher CPMs than one might be accustomed to paying on desktop, for instance. Keep in mind the added value of creating continuity with your audiences and don’t be afraid to pay a little more to capture it.
What are the most common challenges for cross-screen advertisers and what measures can be taken to overcome them?
An effective cross-screen strategy must be able to ingest the separate sets of metrics that are used to evaluate linear TV and OTT environments. In traditional television, spend is driven by GRPs and buyers depend on Nielsen to measure buys of any size and scope. Nielsen’s capabilities are limited in OTT today, but there are many different vendors who have stepped in to fill the void. Meanwhile, digital advertisers rely heavily on VPAID, which is not compatible with some OTT and mobile app environments.
To learn more about the future of cross-screen video, download the report.