With the steep decline of traditional cable TV over the last few years, consumers have been turning toward streaming services as an alternative entertainment source. Three out of four American consumers have either replaced or expanded their media sources by subscribing to a streaming service. These have become so popular that you’d be hard-pressed to find anyone who wouldn’t recognize the names of some of the industry giants like Netflix or Hulu. That sudden rise in the popularity of OTT services is what grabbed the attention of many progressive advertisers.
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Many were swift to realize that traditional TV commercials were dying out as an advertising medium and were quick to jump onto the OTT advertising bandwagon. Despite many OTT platforms being subscription-based, there is still a massive and highly lucrative advertising market in the OTT industry. Advertising still represents a significant source of the OTT market’s revenue (around 35%), and experts predict it to grow even more.
If you are an advertiser and are not leveraging the OTT market’s potential, you are leaving money on the table!
OTT (over-the-top) advertising is personalized ad delivery over the internet directly to viewers’ streaming video services or devices. There are many types of devices users can stream OTT content from. Here are just some of the most common ones:
This advertising method allows publishers to overcome various problems that traditional advertising had, like pre-determined broadcasting schedules, lack of targeting and performance tracking, and much more.
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If you’re looking to learn how OTT ads work, there are two things to look at:
These two processes are vital in the OTT ad serving, so let’s look at them in more detail.
When it comes to OTT ad delivery, it’s essential to consider how the OTT device and the streaming platform communicate. This communication is established via VAST or VPAID ad tags, who are mediators in the four-step ad delivery process:
The second crucial part of OTT advertising’s inner workings is how ads are inserted into the content. There are two primary ad insertion methods:
CSAI is an old-fashioned ad insertion method where the ad loading process occurs within the OTT box itself before getting delivered to the viewer. The reason this method is relatively ineffective is that it is susceptible to ad blockers. Since ads come from outside the content delivery stream with this method, ad blockers detect it and prevent it from playing.
With the SSAI method, ads are integrated into the content stream. That ‘camouflages’ the ads from ad blockers, making this serving method much more reliable for advertisers.
SSAI works in such a way that the ad and the content travel toward the end device as parts of a single frame-by-frame stream. Since the current ad-blocking technology has no means of differentiating ads from content streams, it’s rendered ineffective. That is why this method is also known as ad stitching. Oh, and let’s not forget to mention that this ad insertion method also works on live broadcasts.
It should be evident by now that SSAI is a superior method to CSAI in many ways. Here’s a quick list of the most notable benefits SSAI has over CSAI:
With all of the above in mind, if you wish to get the best ROI out of your OTT advertising campaigns, it’s best to look for a platform that uses SSAI for ad insertion.
Talking about ROI, you’ve probably been wondering whether OTT advertising is a sound investment. Well, we assure you that it is! Here are a few excellent reasons for that:
As you can see, the OTT market’s potential is massive, and it’s only going to keep growing. That is why getting a foothold in the market early on can prove imperative to your success. Doing so will give you the edge over your competitors who might have not yet realized the benefits of OTT advertising.
Speaking of benefits, we’d be remiss not to cover the advantages of OTT advertising in detail.
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There are many reasons online and TV advertisers should consider getting a piece of the OTT advertising cake. We don’t expect you to take our word for it, see it for yourself! Here are some of the most notable benefits OTT advertising brings to the table:
Regardless of how many benefits OTT advertising has, nothing in this world is perfect. We’d be remiss not to mention some of the challenges you will face along the way if you decide to give OTT advertising a shot.
As many benefits as OTT advertising has, there are a few downsides to it. Taking a look at both sides of the coin is crucial when deciding on something as big as entering a new advertising market. So let’s look at the potential challenges you might face if you opt to give OTT advertising a shot:
All of the above issues are present mostly because the OTT advertising market is still in its infancy. But that is also where most of its potential lies! So if you don’t mind facing the above challenges, we believe this opportunity to expand your advertising horizons would be well worth the risk.
If all of the above made you consider trying your hand at OTT advertising, the last thing you’ll need to know is how to purchase OTT ad space. There are two widespread ways of doing that:
After you decide how you’re going to buy OTT ads, you’ll also have to find an OTT platform to advertise on.
Not all OTT platforms support the AVOD monetization model, as most are subscription-based. That is why we’ve shortlisted some of the most notable ones that do. Here are the three best OTT advertising platform you should consider promoting your business on:
Roku is one of the pioneering platforms in the OTT industry and currently has over 37 million users. With such a huge audience, this platform should be at the top of your list!
Roku’s native ad platform allows advertisers to play 15–30 second long ads, interactive videos, form sponsorships, and advertise on overlays. This variety of advertising solutions is what makes Roku perfect for all types of advertisers.
Hulu currently sports the second-largest subscriber base of all OTT advertising platforms with its 29 million monthly subscribers. Like Roku, this platform also offers various advertising options, including features like header bidding, geo-targeting, advanced performance tracking, and several ad types.
Tubi is another excellent contender for an OTT advertising platform with 25 million subscribers and more than 250 partners. This platform guarantees a brand-safe advertising environment, incredible reach, and state-of-the-art ad targeting and measurement tools. If you are looking to cast a wide web with your advertising campaign, including Tubi is a must!
The OTT advertising market is vast and full of opportunities, and it is here to stay. With the decline in the global TV viewership, more and more brands will be turning toward the OTT market, as many predict it will be the future of media streaming. We don’t know about you, but we believe that it’s better to get on board with new trends sooner than later. Getting an early foothold in a market can help you get ahead of the competition when they join you. So why not give OTT advertising a shot? We’re sure you won’t regret it!
Best of luck to you!