There was a time when TV was just, well, TV. You had a few broadcast channels available to you, or perhaps a host of cable options, but that was it. In today’s world, of course, “TV” is a much more fluid concept. Streaming services have created countless avenues for viewers to seek programming. And, it’s now possible to consume shows across a variety of device types, not just your actual television set.
This has obviously complicated things for advertisers. Indeed, the very notion of buying TV ad space has gotten murky, but those who understand the new landscape will find that there’s really more opportunity than ever to directly connect with buyers.
A good starting point is to explore the concept of “advanced TV,” which is where a lot of the prime advertising opportunities can be found. In this post, we’ll explore what advanced TV is, and where it’s headed.
Advanced TV: An Overview
When we talk about advanced TV, we’re using an umbrella term to discuss various forms of streaming programming. Advanced TV can refer to pretty much any type of TV programming that isn’t broadcast, satellite, or cable TV, watched on a traditional set.
Some specific forms of advanced TV include:
- Connected TV (also referred to as “Over the Top” or “OTT”) . This term refers to advertising inventory that’s sold and distributed on over-the-top TV devices (like Roku), smart TV apps, or gaming consoles.
- Programmatic TV. This option allows advertisers to purchase linear TV advertising, then display their ads during live TV events.
- TV Everywhere. TV Everywhere refers to ads served on login-required streaming apps that have been developed by TV networks. It tends to be a very young-skewing audience.
- Video on Demand (VOD). Finally, there’s VOD, which refers to apps created by satellite or cable TV providers; basically, this is the option for viewers who want to purchase and view programming that has already aired.
There’s a lot going on here, but our primary point is simply that people don’t watch TV the way they used to. Advertisers who wish to connect with their target demographic, as cost-effectively as possible, will likely want to consider some of the ad-buying opportunities represented by advanced TV. That’s something the enCOMPASS team can assist you with.
What’s Next for Advanced TV?
If this all sounds very cutting-edge, it is… and in fact, advanced TV remains in an evolutionary state, constantly growing and adapting. Thus, an added challenge for advertisers is being able to forecast where all of this is headed, and what advanced TV will look like in the months and years to come.
To that end, we’d like to make a few projections about what you can expect from advanced TV as we enter 2020.
- The rise of addressable TV. Addressable TV refers to the ability to show different ads to different households while they’re watching the same show. This allows advertisers to move away from the grand-scale ad buys of old, and instead to focus on more finely honing their messaging to provide their audience with relevant, impactful content. This is going to be one of the main areas of focus in TV advertising over the next year. Indeed, it’s a hot market: In 2019, about $2 billion has been spent on addressable TV advertising.
- More spending on programmatic advertising. We also project that programmatic ad buying will see a huge increase in popularity. Indeed, statistics show that programmatic ad spend is currently at about $2.77 billion annually, but it’s likely to double by 2021.
- Traditional TV ad buying to remain flat. While there’s obviously a lot of growth in the advanced TV advertising world, investment in traditional TV is expected to remain more or less flat. That’s true despite it being an election year, in which many leading political campaigns are likely to spend significantly on traditional TV commercials.
- Greater need for digital media consultation. Finally, we think that more and more advertisers are going to become interested in the breadth of advanced TV options available to them. However, navigating these complexities is going to seem like a daunting task to some. To help make effective use of TV ad dollars, a lot of advertisers are likely going to enlist the expertise of digital media consultants, who can help them make prudent and data-driven decisions about their spending.
That’s the state of advanced TV as far as we can tell; this is a field that the enCOMPASS team is constantly monitoring, and we’ll be sure to keep our clients in the loop about all the ways in which this field is expanding.
In the meantime, you may have some questions about where to put your TV ad dollars in 2020. We’d love to give you our advice. Reach out to the enCOMPASS team any time you’d like to schedule a digital media consultation.
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