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Using Connected TV Advertising to Build Your Brand

by | Sep 2, 2021

Remember the days when television advertising felt so simple? When there was just one closed network and a handful of cable providers on old-fashioned, traditional TV? Well, those days are long gone — and that’s cause for celebration! Today, there are countless opportunities for businesses to continue to build their brand through connected TV advertising on smart TVs.

There are several opportunities for organizations to build their brand through connected TV advertising.

We’re going to dive deep into the nitty-gritty of connected TV advertising, including:

  • The growth of connected TV devices
  • Why CTV is effective for branding
  • How connected TV helps with brand ROI
  • Real-world results of high-impact CTV ads
  • The best strategies for connected TV advertising
  • New marketing ideas for CTV ads

Connected TV Advertising as a Channel for Branding

Sometimes referred to as over-the-top or OTT advertising, CTV advertising spans multiple media platforms, from Apple TV and Roku to PlayStation. Moreover, CTV ads run the spectrum of streaming services, including Hulu, Netflix, Amazon Video, and more. With a wide array of smart TV manufacturers and avenues for advertising, CTV ads are a modern solution for a decade’s old problem: how to help a brand build momentum. This plethora of opportunities for viewers to access content is precisely what makes CTV effective for branding.

Your target audience is no longer consuming video advertising through strictly broadcast TV ads. Rather, video ads are now popping up across streaming services or while browsing YouTube. Most major broadcast networks even have free apps for smart TVs. CTV advertising opens the door to all of these platforms and allows for highly relevant messaging through Dynamic Ad Insertion (DAI) technology, which allows advertisers to pivot their ad creative in live, linear, and video-on-demand content.

Consider these additional reasons why connected TV advertising is beneficial for branding.

Explosive Growth of Connected TV Devices

Though television screens still account for more than 90% of our viewing time, the explosive growth of connected TV devices has meant that viewers can watch what they want when they want. This can explain why traditional TV watching has decreased by 44% for 18-24 year-olds and 32% for 24-24 year-olds over the past five years while streaming video has been steadily on the rise. 

In 2017, 59% of American households reported owning a streaming video subscription, a 21% increase from the previous year. Today, video streaming is expected to constitute 82% of all internet traffic by 2022. For example, Netflix has more than 74 million paid subscribers in the U.S. and Canada alone, up 23% from this date in 2019.

Brand ROI vs Marketing ROI

Aside from the irresistible growth TV advertising has experienced in recent years, advertisers should also take a look at the potential brand ROI of CTV ads. Brand ROI is essentially the benefit received from brand-building activities, such as running targeted ads. Though not as easy to define as the traditional return on investment from marketing services, brand ROI is a critical KPI to track.

The reasoning is simple: No one will buy from a business they don’t know exists or don’t understand. Brand awareness ads familiarize your target audience with your company and should keep you top-of-mind over competitors. 

TV generates two to four times greater brand ROI than alternative media channels, including social media and short-form video, when used in combination with other media formats across the marketing funnel. Even more, TV has nearly twice as much incremental lift over social media’s brand ROI in awareness, consideration, and purchase intent, coming second only to ​​paid search. In other words, pushing your ad spend to CTV devices provides a valuable touchpoint for viewers to recognize, learn about, and trust your brand. 

The Impact of Connected TV Advertising on Brands

Connected TV advertising pushes the right content, to the right audience, on the right connected TV device, and there’s an optimal target audience available. But just how successful have connected TV ads on streaming platforms been for brands?

Take a look at just a fraction of some of the real-world results of high-impact CTV ads:

  • White Castle — A two-week, 30-second video ad promoting a limited-time offer for BBQ Beef Sliders. Viewers were able to browse three menu options and use their CTV device to send a coupon to their mobile phones. The campaign had an above-average engagement rate, with 50% of recipients who clicked fully converted to purchasers. 
  • Cadillac — A three-month, 30-second video ad promoting new branding for the 2019 Escalade titled the “Made to Move” campaign. Viewers were able to select between three panels that featured images of the vehicle’s interior and exterior. ​​The campaign earned 72 incremental seconds, more than doubling the average time viewers could spend with the ad.
  • Cigna — A three-month, 30-second video ad encouraging Americans to take control of their health. Viewers were able to watch three separate in-line video interviews with three entertainers. The campaign more than tripled its seconds earned, with viewers engaging with all three videos and fostering strong click activity.  

The Best Strategies for Building Your Brand with Connected TV Advertising

Connected TV advertising is a fantastic opportunity for companies looking to build their brand, but the question remains: How do you build a brand with CTV ads? Take a look at the four concrete strategies we recommend for brand building on connected TV devices, including: 

  1. Harness CTV’s precision audience targeting to your advantage
  2. Utilize interactive videos to engage your audience
  3. Leverage short-form video content
  4. Don’t neglect older generations 

1. Harness CTV’s Precision Audience Targeting to Your Advantage

Effective targeting is at the helm of all successful advertising campaigns, and a connected TV campaign is no different. Fortunately, CTV platforms offer precision audience targeting for marketers to achieve the most bang for their buck. Through OTT platforms, advertisers can target by:

  • Device type
  • Time of day
  • CTV retargeting
  • First-party retargeting
  • Third-party retargeting
  • Lookalike modeling

Moreover, because CTV requires TV viewers to log in with Google or Facebook accounts, advertisers can gather additional data, including zip code, primary language, online behavior, and interests to craft highly personalized CTV campaigns. CTV retargeting is also more advanced than typical programmatic advertising, in that it allows marketers to display re-targeted ads specifically when users are viewing on a connected TV device, making it more likely the user will engage. 

2. Utilize Interactive Videos to Engage Your Target Audience

Aside from traditional video ads, interactive videos are a new method of engaging your target audience and expanding your branding efforts. Interactive videos allow viewers to engage with video content the same way they could with web content, enabling features such as scroll, hover, click, drag, and other digital actions. Unlike other types of digital, completion rates for interactive videos are 44% longer.

Tools to create an immersive, engaging interactive video include: 

  • Hotspots — Clickable buttons that direct viewers to a separate webpage or reveal additional video content, such as product pricing. 
  • Branches — Multiple paths a viewer can take to customize the content they consume.
  • 360 Views — The ability to drag the screen within a video frame to view the content from all directions.
  • Data Inputs — Form fields that allow a viewer to enter their name, age, and other details.
  • Quizzes — Multiple buttons that allow for content branches to reveal a personalized result at the end of the video.

3. Leverage Short-Form Video Content

With the rise of TikTok, short-form video content has exploded, and with it, the consumption of video to connected TV devices. For a better perspective of the importance of short-form video, consider the recent investment of YouTube into YouTube Shorts, a beta platform meant to rival TikTok and cater to shorter videos. More than 120 million users view the current YouTube platform on their connected TV device per month, up from 100 million at the start of the pandemic. 

Aside from big business investments, short-form video is a solid strategy due to the lesser costs related to smaller video ads. Companies can now shoot “short, catchy videos using nothing but their mobile phones,” making it easier than ever before to extend the reach of your brand. For those who choose to partner with a creative agency, these short-form videos can also be repurposed as ads across social media platforms. 

4. Don’t Neglect Older Generations 

While smart TVs have been adopted across the board, it’s important to recognize a discrepancy between devices across different age brackets. The number of viewers aged 65 and older using a connected TV device rose to 28% in 2019, up from 22% in the previous year. However, 84% of adults are still consuming traditional television advertising through linear TV rather than connected. 
What is the difference between linear and connected TV? Linear TV is broadcasting scheduled ads over the air, through cable, and by satellite. Connected TVs are smart TVs and game consoles that stream content to televisions. In the targeted TV advertising technology landscape, be sure not to neglect traditional TV advertising and instead allow your CTV branding campaign to work in tandem with existing TV ads.

New Marketing Ideas for CTV Ads

According to Nielsen, there was a 61% growth in OTT streaming using conventional TVs during 2020. With more demand for digital entertainment than ever before, marketers can enhance their branding strategies through streaming services — and possibly reach more American viewers through streaming platforms than through traditional TV for the very first time. 
Consider these new marketing resources to enhance your CTV ads.

QR Code Advertising 

The use of QR codes, short for Quick Response codes, has accelerated in recent years. QR codes on TV allow companies to engage their TV audience, build their brand, and capture impulse shopping sales. Through the use of these optical labels, viewers can leverage their smartphone to divulge deeper into a brand’s story, explore their products and services, and ultimately convert. 

For example, the fast-food chain Burger King recently experienced success with its “QR Whopper” campaign. Viewers had to “catch” and scan a “floating” QR code to be directed to a web page offering coupons for a free Whopper with a purchase through the BK App. The campaign, which consisted of three interactive TV advertisements, boosted downloads of the mobile app by 14%. 

Game Console Advertising

In-game video advertising is a newer form of marketing emerging across major game consoles, such as Xbox and PlayStation, as well as mobile games. Likewise, advertisers can secure in-game video ads on major streaming platforms, such as Twitch, Facebook Gaming, or YouTube Gaming. Considering there are 2.7 billion video gamers worldwide, and 67% will likely engage with a video ad for a reward, this is quite the sizable audience to tap into. 

For further proof that game console advertising is sweeping into CTV ads, a recent Influencia study discovered that in-game advertising banners generate a 3% click-through rate. This is a whopping 30 times more than standard display banners, which generate a CTR of 0.10%, and Facebook Ads, which generate a 0.03% to 0.11% click-through rate.  

Connect with Connected TV Advertising Today

As more viewers across the nation tap into some type of OTT or streaming device, now is the time to learn more about connected TV advertising. Through connected TV ads, you can drastically increase the reach of your campaign, all while benefiting your overall brand.

To discover exactly how connected TV advertising can build your brand, reach out to a trusted digital marketing partner, Bullseye Strategy. Contact us today to get started.

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