American businesses spend more than $70B annually on television advertising. Less than 5% of that spend goes to over-the-top (OTT) advertising, according to a 2019 Consumer OTT Report by the Harris Poll and OpenX. Why does that matter? Because consumers are shifting towards OTT platforms faster than advertisers. This leaves a vacuum that early adopters can take advantage of to expand their reach.
What is over-the-top advertising?
If the idea of over-the-top advertising is new to you, you could be forgiven for thinking it’s a radically ostentatious marketing campaign. The truth is much more mundane. “Over-the-top” media services refer to those streaming platforms like Netflix, YouTube, and Hulu that allow consumers to cut the cable cord. In some cases, viewers pay a premium for ad-free content.
OTT advertising: a strategy with unique advantages
During the early adoption period of any new technology, businesses are justifiably wary of sinking too much marketing spend into an unproven strategy. However, the 2019 report on OTT advertising reveals a tool that offers unique advantages that traditional forms don’t. For example, 4 in 10 OTT users interviewed said they have paused content to go online and purchase or learn more about an advertised product. Since many OTT consumers view content on their phone or laptop, it’s a quick hop to your website or Facebook page to get more information or make a connection.
OTT advertising tools capture detailed, rich data on markets and consumer behavior, allowing you to finetune campaigns as you gain greater insight into what appeals to your audience.
Robust data paired with modern digital marketing tools allow businesses to hyper-target market subsets at a scale that is unimaginable within traditional television advertising.
While 5 in 10 US adults are currently using at least one OTT service, that number is expected to grow. Fewer than 40% of Millennials don’t plan to keep their live cable, and 2 in 3 consumers who cut their cable cord said there’s nothing a cable company could do to lure them back. In other words, the importance and reach of OTT advertising is only going to grow.
What are OTT best practices?
Use the data
The most brilliant aspect of OTT advertising is that you gain the cutting edge of digital marketing paired with the traditional benefits of television spots. Capitalize on the data-advantage by tracking interactions and studying consumer behavior to evolve your advertising strategy alongside your audience.
When you’re targeting, consider the impact that consumer preferences will have on your advertising effectiveness. For example, a subset who streams to their television may not be able to navigate to your website from your ad but a subset streaming to their phone or laptop could. Understanding how your audience segments are streaming will help you create ads that take full advantage of whatever platform you choose to use.
And, yes, be over the top
While OTT doesn’t actually refer to wild and crazy creative decisions, OTT advertising does lend itself to more groundbreaking design options. Ad spots featured on digital platforms can take advantage of interactive aspects to engage users, and hyper-targeting creates an opportunity to make your niche markets feel seen.
Morgan & Co.: Your partner in OTT advertising
At Morgan & Co., we’ve got decades of experience in television advertising, so you can count on us when it comes to reaching audiences the old-fashioned way. But you can also count on us when it comes to reaching audiences in new-fangled ways, like OTT advertising and multi-platform marketing. We understand that the world is complex, and it’s getting more complex by the day. The businesses that stay ahead of the curve are the businesses that thrive. Get in touch today to learn how we keep businesses thriving.