Connected TV Advertising

What is Connected TV?

Connected TV (CTV) refers to any television device that can connect to the internet and access content beyond what is available via the standard cable or satellite broadcast. This connection can be made either directly through the television itself if it’s a Smart TV, or through external devices such as streaming apps (e.g., Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV), gaming consoles (e.g., PlayStation, Xbox), or related devices like tablets or projectors that have internet capabilities.

The primary feature of connected TV is its ability to stream digital video content from a variety of online services and platforms, such as Netflix, ITV X, Amazon Prime Video, YouTube, and many others. This internet connection also allows for other functionalities like web browsing, accessing social media, and sometimes even using voice commands or interactive applications.

Connected TVs have become a significant part of the shift in how people consume media, moving away from traditional television programming towards more on-demand and personalized content. This change has also impacted advertising, with marketers now having the opportunity to target ads more precisely and measure their effectiveness in ways that were not possible with traditional TV advertising.

At a glance

  • What is Connected TV (CTV)
  • What advertising opportunities are provided with Connected TV
  • Who are the main providers of Connected TV advertising in the UK
  • What ad formats are available on Connected TV

What advertising opportunities are provided by Connected TV?

Connected TV (CTV) offers a range of advertising opportunities that leverage the digital nature of the platform to provide more targeted, interactive, and measurable advertising solutions compared to traditional television advertising. These opportunities include:

Advanced Targeting:

  • Demographic and Behavioral Targeting: Advertisers can target ads based on viewers’ demographics (age, gender, etc.), interests, and behaviors, using data collected from their online activity.
  • Geographic Targeting: Ads can be localized, allowing for region-specific messaging.
  • Device Targeting: Tailor ads based on the type of device being used, whether it’s a smart TV, game console, or streaming device.

Interactive Advertising:
Viewers can interact directly with ads, such as clicking to learn more about a product or service, filling out a form, or even completing a purchase, all from their remote control or connected device.

Enhanced Engagement:
CTV platforms often provide a more engaging and less cluttered viewing environment, which can lead to higher ad engagement rates. Interactive elements and relevant targeting increase viewer engagement further.

Programmatic Buying:
Advertisers can use programmatic advertising platforms to buy CTV ad space, allowing for real-time bidding and more efficient use of advertising budgets. This also enables more granular targeting and optimization based on performance data.

Brand Safety and Transparency:
CTV platforms often offer higher levels of brand safety and transparency about where ads will appear, which is crucial for advertisers concerned about their brand’s association with content.

Cross-device Tracking and Attribution:
With CTV being part of the larger digital ecosystem, advertisers can track user engagement across devices (from CTV to mobile to desktop) and measure the effectiveness of their campaigns in driving outcomes like website visits, app downloads, or purchases.

Rich Media and High-Quality Ad Formats:
CTV supports high-quality video ads, including 4K content, providing a visually compelling medium for storytelling and brand messaging. This includes various ad formats like pre-roll, mid-roll, interactive ads, and sponsored content.

Sequential Messaging:
Advertisers can use CTV to deliver sequential ads to a viewer, telling a story over a series of ad spots across different content or over time, enhancing message retention and engagement.

Addressable Advertising:
CTV enables addressable advertising, where different households or viewers can be shown different ads during the same program based on their data profiles, thanks to dynamic ad insertion technology.

These opportunities make CTV an attractive platform for advertisers looking to combine the impact of traditional TV advertising with the precision and interactivity of digital advertising.

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Who are the main sellers of Connected TV advertising in the UK?

In the UK, the landscape of connected TV (CTV) advertising is evolving rapidly, with several key players dominating the market. These main sellers typically include a mix of traditional broadcasters who have expanded into the digital space, streaming platforms, and tech and media agencies that specialize in programmatic advertising:

Traditional Broadcasters with Digital Platforms:

  • ITV X (from ITV): Offers advertising opportunities on its on-demand service, where advertisers can reach viewers who are streaming ITV content online.
  • BBC iPlayer: While primarily ad-free due to its funding model, it has explored limited advertising opportunities, particularly for audiences outside the UK.
  • Channel 4: Provides targeted advertising options on its streaming platform, with a variety of ad formats.
  • Sky AdSmart: Part of Sky, AdSmart allows for highly targeted advertising that enables different ads to be shown to different households watching the same program.

Streaming Services:

  • Netflix: Traditionally ad-free, Netflix has started exploring ad-supported subscription tiers
  • Amazon Prime Video: Offers advertising options through Amazon’s extensive advertising network, although Prime Video itself is mostly ad-free for subscribers.
  • Disney+: Announced plans to introduce an ad-supported subscription tier, expanding advertising opportunities.

Tech Companies and Advertising Platforms:

  • Roku: Not just a provider of streaming devices, Roku also offers advertising options on its platform, which includes access to a variety of ad-supported channels.
  • Google (YouTube): YouTube is a major player in online video advertising, with its extensive reach on both desktop and connected TVs.
  • Amazon Fire TV: A significant player in programmatic advertising, offering access to CTV inventory across various platforms.

Media and Advertising Agencies:

Many agencies now specialize in digital and CTV advertising, helping brands place ads across various streaming services and platforms. In addition to buying across all the CTV options above we can access 100s of CTV audiences via Google’s advance Digital & Video 360 ad platform. Contact us to explore options.

Explore Connected TV options with our experience team – contact us today

CTV Formats & New Ways of TV Advertising

Connected TV (CTV) advertising in the UK incorporates a variety of ad formats that leverage the advanced capabilities of internet-connected devices to engage viewers more effectively than traditional TV advertising. These formats are designed to capture the attention of viewers in a non-intrusive way, offering interactivity, targeted content, and enhanced measurement capabilities. Here are some of the popular CTV ad formats along with examples:

  • Pre-roll and Mid-roll Ads: Pre-roll ads are shown before the start of a video, ensuring viewers see the ad before their selected content begins. These are common across many platforms, including ITV X and Channel 4. Mid-roll ads appear at natural breaks within the content, similar to traditional TV commercials but are inserted into streaming content.
  • Interactive Ads: These ads allow viewers to interact with the content, such as clicking through to a website or engaging with a video. For example, ITV X offers interactive ads that can include quizzes or additional product information.
  • Sponsored Content: This format integrates advertising more seamlessly with content, such as sponsored shows or branded segments. For instance, a streaming service might feature a series sponsored by a brand, with the brand receiving mentions or product placements within the content.
  • Bumper Ads: Short, non-skippable ads of up to 6 seconds that play before, during, or after video content. YouTube on CTV devices is known for utilizing bumper ads to deliver concise messages.
  • Overlay Ads: These are transparent ads that appear over the bottom part of the video content being watched. They’re less intrusive and can offer an interactive component, such as leading the viewer to a landing page when clicked.
  • Pause Ads: Being pioneered by Channel 4, a static ad appears as the viewer pauses the TV content. Think furniture advertiser as a viewer pauses Channel 4s Grand Designs
  • Dynamic Ad Insertion (DAI): DAI technology allows for ads to be swapped out and personalized based on the viewer’s profile or viewing habits. Sky AdSmart is a leader in this technology, enabling advertisers to target households with different ads during the same program based on demographic data.
  • Programmatic Video Ads: These ads are purchased and placed through automated software, allowing for real-time bidding and more efficient targeting. Platforms like The Trade Desk and Google’s DV360 are popular for managing CTV programmatic buys.

Each of these formats offers unique benefits, from increased engagement through interactivity to more precise targeting and analytics. As the CTV landscape continues to evolve, we can expect further innovation in how ads are delivered and interacted with on these platforms.