Happy Holidays: The Perks of Using OTT Over the Holidays

OTT

Happy Holidays: The Perks of Using OTT Over the Holidays

The holiday season is here! It’s a time filled with joy, cheer, and family time spent together. But businesses also know it’s a time filled with shopping.

Let’s be honest, we all know that person who’s been Christmas shopping since October. That’s a lot of time for businesses to leverage the power of their streaming content. Smart businesses are taking it a step further by leveraging OTT this holiday season.

If you’re curious about the perks of using holiday season OTT, you’re in luck. We’re going to discuss everything you need to know about OTT ads in the article below.

By the time you’re done reading, you’ll have another marketing tool you can add to your toolbelt. So, join us until the end of this article. We have a lot of information to share.

Get your pen and pad ready. Your OTT marketing class is now in session!

What Is OTT Marketing?

OTT is an acronym that stands for over-the-top marketing. This is a new class of advertising that is born out of the trend of streaming services we’ve seen in the market recently. OTT ads are shown directly to viewers over streaming services like Youtube TV, Fubo, and Sling. 

OTT ads have an advantage over traditional TV advertisements. This is because they can bypass the major cable companies that control media distribution. By using OTT advertising, brands can reach their customers directly.

OTT, or over-the-top, marketing also offers brands more flexibility. Companies no longer have to stick to a pre-planned broadcasting schedule. This allows companies to make advertising moves freely.

They’re also not as limited by geographic locations anymore.

Why Invest In OTT?

Over the past few years, we’ve seen streaming services disrupt the traditional video market. In the same way, OTT marketing is disrupting the traditional method of broadcast advertising.

Marketing executives at major companies are beginning to see OTT video as a vital component of their marketing media mix. They still continue to use more traditional forms of advertising, but OTT video is slowly starting to become a more major component of their strategy.

The reason for this push toward OTT is because it is beginning to outperform some other forms of marketing. Marketing executives are already noticing how effective OTT ads can be at meeting sales initiatives and marketing goals.

This is because OTT video provides a unique marriage of video and data marketing. Since this video is broadcast on digital streaming platforms, marketing experts can more easily track OTT campaign KPIs and performance. As a result, OTT campaigns are much easier to track, measure, and scale.

Marketers can also hone in on their target audience using OTT. The fact that OTT video is data-driven helps marketers achieve new levels of targeting. The result is that the right message gets to the right people more often.

Benefits of OTT

If you’ve been in marketing for any length of time, you’re familiar with the marketing funnel. Basically, the marketing funnel is the journey your prospects go through before they make a purchasing decision.

Most people are missing the mark with respect to OTT and how it fits in the marketing funnel. Most marketers view OTT as a “top-of-funnel” awareness campaign. This means that they’re only using OTT at the beginning of their marketing efforts.

But OTT can actually be used as a “full-funnel” marketing strategy. This is because of the data-driven nature and targeting features available with OTT video.

The targeting ability of OTT also has other benefits. Since brands are able to target their customers with new levels of precision, there is less marketing waste. More marketing dollars can be used for OTT video or other effective marketing channels.

In addition to less waste, more precise targeting can help with your ad engagement. All of the data points OTT gives you can help you to zero in on your perfect customer avatar. This means more appropriate ads are hitting your target customers.

In the marketing industry, this is called an increase in ad relevance. As your ad relevance goes up, the ratio of customers that engage with your ad goes up as well. This means more conversions, higher sales, and better campaign performance.

Where OTT Ads Display

So, where can people see these ads? OTT ads show up on a variety of streaming services. It can get a little tricky because there are several different distribution channels.

But, for our purposes, we’ll stick to a “high-level” overview.

OTT ads can stream to a number of devices. Any device where you can stream your favorite shows is subject to OTT advertising. Computers, tablets, smartphones, gaming consoles, streaming devices, and smart TVs are all possible points of consumption for OTT ads.

But, ads don’t just appear on these devices. The content is delivered through a number of distribution channels. This is why OTT advertising can get a little complex.

It’s also important to mention that the term “OTT marketing” isn’t a one-size-fits-all term for digital content marketing. The OTT ads marketplace is broken down further by distribution channel.

Again, we won’t go into too much detail here but it pays to know what they are. Digital OTT advertising can be distributed by any of the following channels:

  • SVOD – Subscription Video on Demand (Netflix, Hulu, etc.)
  • AVOD – Advertising-based Video on Demand ( Tubi, Vudu, etc.)
  • vMVPDs – Multichannel Video Programming Distributors (Sling, YouTube TV)
  • CTV – Connected TV (A smart TV connected to the internet)

Each of these platforms are different when it comes to advertising. The way you advertise on Hulu may be different than the way you advertise on Roku. In fact, Roku is unique because it’s both a device and a platform.

Using OTT Over the Holidays

What all of these channels have in common are their captive audiences. Content is always readily available across multiple platforms. This is especially true during the holiday season.

More viewers than normal are tuning in to view Christmas classics and Hallmark movies to get into the holiday spirit. With so many viewers tuning in, it’s important that brands take advantage of the increased eyeballs on their message.

Here are some of the holiday trends and perks need to watch out for. 

Advertising Video On Demand Returns

During the summer months the amount of OTT ads on AVOD channels drops significantly. The amount of ad slots being filled during the summer dropped to around 30%. Now, ad spend on OTT advertising for AVOD channels is greater than it was at this time in 2019. 

Experts are also seeing about a 6% increase in ad spend. Part of this has to do with the popularity of these distribution channels in people’s homes. But, there is another source of momentum behind this trend, as well.

The COVID-19 pandemic has brought about a lot of economic uncertainty. People around the globe have had to “tighten their belts” due to job loss and other reductions of income. This means more viewers are opting for free, ad-supported streaming services.

Why pay for an unnecessary subscription service when your favorite shows could be supported by the company’s ad revenue? It’s a triple win for the viewers, the streaming service, and brands wanting to get eyes on their ads.

TV Ads Will Spur Growth

Connected TVs are starting to increase in viewership. The reason being is that they are attracting the most “stay-put” viewers. These are viewers that are binge-watching their favorite shows for hours on end.

Experts are beginning to see people spend more time with CTV this year than last year. Most of that increased attention is focused on the video content provided by Smart TVs. 

This new focus on Smart TVs is directly affected traditional TV advertising. Statistics show ad viewership on traditional TV is down almost 25%. At the same time, ad viewership on CTV applications is up almost 19%

The big players in the CTV industry are still continuing to experience fast growth. Platforms like Netflix, Amazon Prime, and Disney+ are expected to double their revenue in the near future.

Revenue from these platforms is expected to jump from $50 billion to $100 billion over the next 5 years.

Streaming Is King

Large broadcast companies are beginning to reshift their focus. Putting new programming out on traditional television is no longer their main focus. Many major TV corporations have come out and said they are “streaming-first” companies.

The first company to do this was Disney. Disney officially announced that they’re shifting their team’s focus to put Disney+ at the forefront of their efforts. 

This makes sense for two reasons. The first is that viewers are consuming digital content at rates we’ve never seen before. This is kind of what we talked about in the sections above. The second reason has to do with the uncertainty of our current society.

There’s both social and economic uncertainty in the world today. Disney, and other major streaming companies, seem to think that streaming content is the best way to combat that. Not only are they riding the major trend of the “TV” business, but they’re also hedging their bets.

How do you ensure that your viewers continue to watch your content during uncertain times? The easiest answer is to stream it directly into their living rooms. This is the strategy with the lowest risk for companies like Disney, Netflix, and Amazon.

If people want to view Moana or Mulan, they don’t have to go to the movie theater anymore. They simply walk 50 feet into their living room and download it off of Disney+. It’s a fool-proof business model.

Look for the best content from these companies to be available as “streaming only” during the holiday season.

Subscriptions Will Increase

Another trend we’ll see as we move into the holidays is a sharp increase in subscriptions to services like Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon Prime. You might be wondering why that is. The answer is more obvious than you think.

The holidays may mean something different for all of us. But, one thing we can all agree on is that the holidays are a time of giving. Giving gifts, more specifically.

Statistics show that purchases of subscription-based video on demand go up about 150% between Black Friday and Christmas Eve. This is because subscription services make an excellent gift.

There are a few reasons why subscriptions as gifts have grown in popularity. The first reason is obvious: there’s no wrapping! Sending someone a subscription to Netflix or Disney+ as a gift is a very convenient option.

Not only can you ditch the wrapping paper, but you can tell the streaming service to email them with the subscription information on a date that you choose. That means your family can wake up Christmas morning to an e-mail from Netflix telling them they can watch for the next year (or however long of a subscription you purchase).

Subscriptions are also a thoughtful gift. Giving someone the experience of movies, documentaries, or fitness classes will go much further than buying them new socks or underwear. 

They’re also the perfect gift for the “last-minute” crowd. In 2018, streaming subscriptions went up 600% on December 23 and 1000% on December 24. Getting someone a subscription to their favorite shows is a way to “put something under the tree” just in the St. Nick of time!

Who’s Down With OTT?

“Who’s down with OTT? Yea, you know me!”

OTT is the new trend in advertising. Don’t expect that trend to slow down at all this holiday season, either. If you’re looking for ways to advertise your business, start to look toward buying ad space on a streaming service.

It may be one of the best decisions you make coming into 2022. For more information on the subject, or answers to any questions, contact Media Shark today.

Our team of experts is more than happy to help find the digital marketing or OTT solution that’s right for you and your business.

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