Marketers Should View Digital Video as a Complement to TV
Alex RosenthalOctober 9, 2014
For video advertisers, traditional television trumps online video as the primary mode of distribution. But that won’t always be the case. According to eMarketer, digital video growth is outpacing TV growth year-over-year in terms of percentage of dollar growth and is expected to surpass traditional TV in terms of total yearly budget growth by 2018.
The appeal of TV is clear: it’s a mass-market format with a well-established history. However, viewers today are increasingly tuning out during commercial breaks either on their mobile devices or fast-forwarding with their DVRs. Additionally, users are spending an average of 5 hours and 46 minutes of their daily media time on their desktops, phones and tablets - over an hour more per day than on their TVs. More than half of mobile users are watching video content on these devices.
Since viewers are now distracted by their various screens, marketers now need to think more strategically about where and how they distribute their video advertisements. While the digital video marketplace is more fragmented than TV, it can offer three distinct advantages to brands that use it to supplement a broadcast buy:
- Target viewers more frequently by using set-top box data to reach online users who have seen your ad on television.
- Increase reach against your demo by layering audience segments (which can be verified by Nielsen for continuity with TV) across an online video buy. This can also include the option to exclude TV ad viewers to maximize unique views.
- Conquest by targeting online users who have seen your competitors’ TV ads.
It’s also easy to duplicate the quality of a television campaign online. While it’s fun to watch user-generated videos of wedding tents collapsing or dogs eating peanut butter while dressed as humans, you can’t always guarantee they will be brand safe. Networks like NBC, Comedy Central, and MTV, along with aggregators like Hulu, offer on-demand Full Episode Players (FEPs) and broadcast quality content online, where precise audiences can be reached reliably and within premium environments.
These publishers also offer several options in terms of ad length and channel, spanning across desktop, mobile web, mobile app, and connected TV. They also offer more flexibility than TV to be optimized fluidly based on performance.
While online video is a relatively new territory compared to television - particularly in mobile which is on the rise at a significantly faster pace than desktop - a digital strategy can complement existing broadcast efforts by increasing reach and decreasing diminishing returns on TV.