How to Grow Your Brand in the “Connected Decade”


By Emilia Crail

Connected TV is currently one of the fastest-growing channels in advertising — and it’s not surprising. Connected TV ads are an effective way of reaching your target audience; they’re highly targeted, unskippable, trackable, brand-safe ads that are guaranteed to make an impact.

Connected TV (CTV) is digital content accessed by apps and streamed over smart TVs, mobile, or OTT devices.

The term “over the top” originated in the broadcast world. Content that was originally distributed for view on TVs using broadcast, cable, or satellite channels began to be served online, or “over the top”. It was used to refer to content being distributed via the internet and viewed on desktop computers and mobile devices (which were the primary means to consume OTT video at that time).

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Use the terms OTT and CTV correctly

Use CTV when you are specifically talking about Smart TVs and streaming devices that are attached to TVs. Mobile and desktop devices are not included under the term CTV.

Use OTT when it doesn’t matter which devices are included. For example, if you want to talk about “OTT services” (like Hulu or TubiTV) and delivery to a particular device doesn’t matter. OTT is still a valid term that distinguishes premium television content from the vast world of online video where user-generated content is commonplace.

We considered 2020 to be the start of the “connected decade” due to the incredible growth of digital TV and streaming. Few could have predicted, however, just how quickly we’d see that growth skyrocket. Stuck at home for inordinate amounts of time during the COVID-19 pandemic, consumers around the world tuned into over-the-top (OTT) and connected TV (CTV) content at record rates to stay informed and entertained. New streaming bundles hit the market at an opportune time, and brands followed consumers to new channels with ad budgets rapidly shifting into digital.

Cord-cutting households are rising faster than expected, on track to eclipse traditional pay TV by 2024. Programmatic budgets will surge with the rise in CTV streaming, as well as advancements in addressable technology that are finally bringing linear inventory into digital buying workflows. Everyone — from media owners to advertisers to smart TV manufacturers — is focused on the potential for audience data to improve inventory values, enhance campaign performance, and deliver more relevant consumer experiences.

In the US, 40% of adults are now CTV consumers. In Europe’s biggest markets, there is 50% reach in CTV viewership, representing 61.5 million households. CTV audiences are more mature than expected, with a median age of 45 in the US, and 43 in Europe. 

In 2018, average daily CTV viewing in the US was 46 minutes. Today, CTV viewers are watching three hours of programming per day, a number that continues to climb during the pandemic. OTT viewers in APAC spend an average of three hours per day watching video content, and the majority reported watching an additional one to two hours since the COVID-19 outbreak began.

If you want to know more about how C Squared Social works directly with networks to achieve cost efficiency, priority, and access premium connected tv inventory for our clients, please fill out a lead form on our website or call us at 858-386-7400. Our team of experts can help you take your business to the next level.

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