Agencies and advertisers, it’s time to get in on Connected TV


This article was originally written for, and published on, Broadcasting & Cable.
Read the original article, “Consumers Have Already Found Connected TV, But Agencies and Advertisers Are Missing in Action”, here.

If you watch Connected TV—whether through an internet-enabled device like a Roku, on your mobile phone or a smart TV set—you’re not alone. In fact, last year 168 million Americans, or about half of all U.S. consumers, accessed traditional television content over the internet, according to eMarketer. But despite that massive audience, agencies and advertisers have been slow to adapt to Connected TV.

In a recent survey, Forrester found that only about 15 percent of marketing professionals regularly include Connected TV in their television media plans. And while 35 percent of the marketing professionals surveyed said they’ve experimented with Connected TV but need to learn more (an encouraging sign), more than half of them had yet to go beyond doing the most basic investigation. Why the disconnect?

We aren’t just talking about cord-cutters anymore

A few years ago, when the industry first started talking about cord-cutters, the term was synonymous with millennials. But that’s no longer the case. According to a recent Deloitte study, a majority of American households (55 percent) subscribe to at least one video streaming service.

But whether they’ve cut the cord or not (some households use both cable and Connected TV), the bottom-line is that agencies and advertisers can no longer afford to think of Connected TV audiences with such a singular mindset. Yes, those audiences were initially led by the young and the early adopters, but that’s old news. Today, older Americans and late adopters are among the Connected TV audience, thanks to smart television sets that ship with everything you need to connect, easy-to-use OTT services, and perhaps most important of all, the increasingly high cost of subscribing to linear television. In fact, what the Deloitte study illustrates is an unspoken truth: linear-only households aren’t just shrinking, they’re in the minority.

Changing the old mindset isn’t easy, and to be fair to agencies, and advertisers, our world always seems to be moving faster than we can comprehend. But change we must. If you’re among the 15 percent of marketing professionals in the Forrester survey who regularly include Connected TV in your media plan, then 2018 is the year your forethought pays off. But if you’re still experimenting or taking a wait-and-see approach, this needs to be the year you commit to making Connected TV your top priority. After all, the only way to truly kill off the myth that Connected TV is an outlier experience is to find the truth in your own campaign data.

Interested in learning the truth about targeting and measurement on Connected TV? Read the full article here.