StackAdapt sat down with Laura Buchman, Vice President of Addressable and Audience Strategy at Telaria, to discuss the importance of connected TV.
What is Telaria and what is your offering with connected TV (CTV)?
Telaria’s complete software platform optimizes yield for leading video publishers and virtual Multichannel Video Programming Distributor (vMVPDs) including Sling TV, A&E, Hallmark, Pluto TV, Philo and fuboTV to help them manage and monetize their programmatic and direct inventory across any screen and device a viewer is watching.
We’re excited about CTV because we believe all TV will eventually be accessed digitally. When we talk about CTV, we mean an internet-enabled TV screen. CTV is all about the large screen viewing experience which we believe is the optimal way to view premium content. CTV represented 44% of our revenue last quarter and continues to be one of our biggest growth drivers. It’s an exciting time to be in CTV and many are gravitating here now, but Telaria has been laser-focused on executing in CTV since we first introduced our supply platform back in 2014.
We’ve engineered our Video Management Platform (VMP) to be able to deliver a premium ad-supported viewing experience on CTV, something many technology platforms are not equipped to do because they were built for display. We provide advertisers with TV-like buying opportunities and equip publishers with unprecedented real-time analytics to effectively monetize their inventory along with delivering the efficiencies and speed of digital.
Why should advertisers pay attention to CTV?
The fact is over 30%of US households no longer have cable and that number will continue to grow as more people cut the cord. Millennials and Gen Z are particularly likely to be cord-cutters or cord-nevers and traditional TV is no longer the best way to reach these younger audiences.
Importantly, CTV is purposeful viewing. People actively seek out the content and watch attentively. This is not background noise which can often be how people watch traditional TV, nor is it a 5 second video on a social media feed. CTV combines the lean-back, long form video environment of traditional TV with the data rich, precision targeting of digital.
Who have been the early adopters of CTV? Who should consider CTV as an extension of their video strategy?
In terms of advertisers who buy CTV, we see a lot of interest from categories that historically buy linear TV: auto, CPG, entertainment as well as pharma and alcohol. There’s a lot of interest in CTV inventory from both advertisers who are familiar with buying linear TV, as well as digital buyers who want to advertise on live sports that are not available on-demand. Political is another growing category as CTV allows for much more granular targeting than what is available in traditional TV in addition to having the capability to optimize in real time.
We have also seen some more traditional brands make the jump to CTV very effectively. We recently helped WD-40 activate their first CTV campaign when they sought to reach millennials employed in specific industries. Instead of running linear TV ads on channels where WD-40 guessed their target audience would be watching, CTV allowed the brand to layer in demographic and psychographic targeting to more precisely reach the audience they wanted. Using PMPs, WD-40 could select inventory across multiple publishers, ensuring their ads were running alongside high quality, engaging content.
Can you tell us more about the targeting and addressability opportunities with CTV?
First, it’s important that we establish what we mean by “addressable”. For us, addressable means targeting at the household or individual level. This can be on any device where the consumer is consuming content. In the past, addressable has been limited to household level targeting on traditional TV, but CTV has the potential to go beyond that.
Telaria recently launched Audience Connect, our addressable solution, which makes it easy for advertisers to leverage 1st and 3rd-party data sources, contextual data and campaign performance metrics holistically. Telaria is the only VMP to index cross-device audiences against Nielsen data in the pre-campaign stage to curate audience segments. Our content partners are constantly looking for ways to showcase desirable content and audiences to buyers and they can do this through Telaria’s platform, as well as through our partnerships and integrations with best-in-class data providers. We can segment inventory enriched with specific data sets, allowing publishers and vMVPDs to bring desirable inventory into discoverable marketplaces. We continue to build on these targeting capabilities to give buyers more flexibility and precision, allowing their budgets to go further.
What are best practices for repurposing video assets for CTV?
Repurposing video assets is a common strategy for many advertisers—and one that makes common sense. There are a few best practices for repurposing a video asset for this channel:
- Connected TV is “big screen” inventory which means creative assets need to follow standard TV dimensions for the best viewing experience.
- Use fewer vast wrappers, as too many wrappers can limit scale and cause other technical issues. We recommend using no more than two wrappers to avoid any player capacity issues.
- Ensure the best consumer experience by serving ad creatives in the right aspect ratio for the device, and with story lines of different lengths so as to better match the ad with the platform it will be viewed.
- Video assets for CTV can be TV length so, depending on the message, consider 15s, 30s and 60s ads. We recommend 15-30s for most scale.
What are you looking forward to in 2020 with regards to CTV?
2020 is going to be a big year for CTV and one of those reasons is, of course, the presidential election. GroupM is forecasting $10 billion will be spent on political advertising leading up to the election, and with a growing segment of voters no longer reachable on linear TV, we’re going to see more political advertisers turning to CTV. A study we conducted with national research firm Cygnal found that viewers were more likely to be influenced on a voting decision when they watched a political video ad and political ad recall was also twice as high on CTV compared to desktop display.
The summer Olympics will be another exciting opportunity for advertisers to activate on through CTV. We connect brands to both live and on-demand Olympics content globally so they can reach viewers wherever and whenever they tune in. In 2020 we will see advertisers increasingly use CTV to supplement a linear TV campaign or, in the case of brands who have not previously advertised on traditional TV, launch their first TV ads in a CTV environment.
Reach out to your StackAdapt Representative to learn about Telaria’s offering and how you can get started with connected TV.