With advertising supported SVOD on the rise, look for more pairing of linear and OTT than ever before. Brand safety as well as premium content make this a strong combination. And while the streaming services may look for advertisers to pay “top dollar for the lack of clutter, precise targeting and better data about campaign performance” there will be a lot more competition this year. One tactic helping to balance pricing will be programmatic sales. In general, the expectation is that “the supply of impressions in linear channels will be tight” driving more dollars to digital offerings. (NEXTTV: 4/12/21)
New research from Advertiser Perceptions reinforces the shift to streaming, with budgets up 15%. According to the study, 36% of advertisers plan to increase their virtual MVPD spending, 25% will increase addressable linear TV support, and 19% plan to spend more on linear TV. The study also found that 48% of advertisers are buying OTT and connected TV programmatically, with the top benefits being the ability to target and add reach to campaigns. (NEXTTV: 4/12/21)
While at-home TV viewing grew during the pandemic, traditional broadcast TV and cable did not participate in this trend. According to Nielsen, their declines continued. One factor influencing this erosion is believed to be the presence of “far fewer prime-time original shows than a year ago.” Another factor, as emphasized by this week’s claim by the Video Advertising Bureau (VAB) is that Nielsen has been undercounting TV usage since the beginning of the pandemic, “due to issues that prevented its field agents from getting into homes.” Of note, “there was a 23% decline in Hispanic TV panel homes, a 28% decline in Black TV panel homes, and a 14% fall in Asian TV panel homes. While Nielsen doesn’t dispute their lack of in-home access, they dispute the VAB’s totals. Nielsen also explains that they’ve been operating remotely, with in-home service restarting in March 2021. “All this comes at a crucial time” with upfront season around the corner. MediaPost: 4/8/21 & 4/13/21)
SMART TV TAKEOVER
According to Hub Entertainment Research, Smart TVs now represent a majority of TVs owned by U.S. households, a potential threat to external connected TV devices. The research firm reports that 70% of households own a Smart TV. Among total TV’s, just over half of them (52%) are Smart TVs, up from 45% in 2020. “This ‘eliminating of the middleman’ will have a direct impact on how future revenue is split on advanced TV businesses like streaming, interactive shopping, and addressable advertising.” Roku and Amazon still dominate the connected TV streaming device market in the U.S., with 57% of TV homes now having a Roku/Fire TV streaming device, up 51% from a year ago. Overall, 56% of all homes say they stream using a Smart TV at least once a month, up from 48% in 2020. (FierceVideo: 4/7/21)
FAST BURN RESET
To make up for last week’s fried pickle-stuffed corndog (and a side of peanut butter) we turn to GMA’s (4/13/21) segment with Dr. Ian K. Smith, author of Fast Burn: The Power of Negative Energy Balance. With the pandemic making people sluggish, and summer only two months away, now is the perfect time to “hit reset and get back on track with a healthy diet.” Well, then, maybe just one corndog?