OTT (over-the-top television) and streaming services have exploded in popularity over the past few years, bringing a wide array of options available to millions of people whenever they look for them. By advertising through these platforms, you can reach a broader audience than ever before, but there are a few critical differences between linear TV and OTT advertising.
Understanding OTT Ads
The term "OTT" defines how people watch television shows, movies, or other types of video content on their televisions over the internet. Most often, people use a smart TV that can connect to their home's Wi-Fi network, or they can use a gaming console or smart device to access various apps that allow them to stream content.
OTT content also means that users don't have to pay for cable, and the hundreds of channels they never watch often come with even the most basic packages. Instead, OTT users can either pay a subscription fee to access the content they want or pay to view content instantly. Many of these platforms work without commercials instead of relying on subscription fees for revenue, but plenty of them still display ads on non-premium packages.
OTT Ads Are More Targeted Than Regular Television Ads
The ads displayed on OTT platforms are functionally the same as commercials shown on regular television, though they differ in delivery method. OTT ads are presented to select groups of people based on the shows they watch. These platforms collect vast amounts of data to recommend what viewers should watch next to keep them using the service. That data also helps determine which ads are most likely to work for the demographics of people who tend to view certain types of content.
OTT analytics allow your ads to hit demographics that closely matches your target audience or those most likely to be interested in what you have to offer. Furthermore, OTT ads don't require you to purchase time slots of channels. Instead, it displays ads when viewers watch content, regardless of the time of day.
Making OTT Ads and TV Commercials
Because more people are using OTT these days, advertisers need to adapt their strategies for these new platforms. It can be exhausting and costly to create separate ads tailored to streaming services and regular television, but OTT ads don't have to be custom-made. Instead, the best strategy is to create ads that work well on both types of platforms, allowing you to reach a broader audience than ever.
OTT ads are typically in 15- or 30-second increments for consumers' short attention span when viewing advertisements. It's relatively easy to take your existing TV commercial and alter its duration if needed. OTT ads and TV commercials don't have to be that different from one another- their content can be identical, but their delivery method is the crucial difference.
Of course, you still want your TV commercial or OTT ads to be engaging, clear, and concise. Creating a quality commercial lets you convey information efficiently, increasing consumer knowledge and driving action.
The Benefit of OTT Analytics
There are numerous benefits of OTT advertising for your brand. Perhaps its most significant benefit is reaching audiences that have been difficult to reach in the past with more traditional methods. OTT allows viewers to watch shows and movies on their TV, but users can also watch content on their phone, tablet, or other mobile devices while at home, on the bus or train, or taking a break at work.
OTT can reach the people traditional TV often cannot reach or not reach as consistently. Most people don't rely exclusively on their television to view content anymore, especially while out and about. Plus, the targeted nature of OTT ads allows you to spend less money on casting a wide marketing net and instead put your advertising dollars to use much more efficiently.
Many companies and brands understand that OTT ads can help their bottom line and are rapidly jumping on the bandwagon. OTT ad spending will likely cross the $1 billion threshold in 2021, with expectations to increase to over $2 billion by 2025.
For Many, The Ultimate Ad Strategy Is to Use OTT and Linear TV Ads
Although OTT and cable ads come with their own sets of pros and cons, using a comprehensive advertising strategy that employs both methods can help your brand reach more people than ever before. Quality media partners have experts on hand that know how to give your advertising dollars, whether used on OTT, cable, or both, the most bang for their buck.