It seems that the conversation on the growth in OTT is an old one – except it isn’t. OTT continues to strengthen, gaining more subscribers every week. As this happens, broadcasters are providing OTT capabilities alongside their traditional TV platforms, making targeted ad insertion even more crucial in the modern TV landscape.
For both OTT and linear TV, advertisements are the key broadcast revenue stream. In recent years, targeted advertising has been one of the strongest ways to generate more revenue as the advertisement is likely to be interacted with, and therefore, more valuable. Ads can be targeted based on location and viewer profile if the metadata has been applied correctly.
Why Replace Ads?
So, why replace advertisements in OTT? Because it boosts revenue, whether it’s pure linear TV, linear to OTT or pure OTT. To make the ad slots as valuable as possible, broadcasters need to make them audience relevant to increase the likelihood of engagement. However, with OTT, advertisements can become outdated as content can be viewed past the original airing date. Super Bowl ads may not make sense well after the event and may disengage viewers, reducing advertisement value.
Rights issues can also make OTT advertisements unusable. If a broadcaster has advert rights for a linear stream only, including the ad in OTT breaches that legal agreement. To fix this, you can replace the advertisement (preferred), or black out the content.
Replacing ads according to personal preferences and profiles makes advertising all the more appealing. This very personalized service generates additional value for all, including the consumer and the advertiser. All providers, both linear TV and OTT, should be exploring this possibility.
Not only should broadcasters replace irrelevant ads, but they should be targeting new ones based on context. For example, if a viewer is watching baseball, then ads for sports gear, or a popular trainer brand is more likely to catch the viewer’s attention than other types. In addition, this advertising can be geo-targeted.
This is even more useful for OTT, as consumers watch on mobile devices and engagement, such as ad skipping or clicking, can be tracked. This gathered data helps to further target the correct audiences for those ads, increasing the ad slot value, and generating more revenue.
Importance of Generating Worth
Adding OTT platforms alongside linear TV can be seen as expensive, time-consuming and difficult to manage. However, with proper replacement and targeted advertisements, you can generate revenue easily. This can help cover the cost of reformatting for OTT, plus retain audiences with personalized viewing experiences.
This is also important for pure OTT providers, especially since ads can often be the only revenue source. For both traditional linear providers adding OTT services, and pure OTT providers, offering targeted advertisements has the potential for a television experience far beyond that of linear TV.
The Right Metadata
To replace adverts with ones that are targeted, you need the right metadata. The correct application and automation of metadata makes all the difference.
To seamlessly replace one advert with another, content aggregators need to know the exact start and end times of the segment being replaced. Metadata in the form of industry standard SCTE 104 and SCTE 35 can accurately mark the first and last frames of ads in linear content. This needs to be seamless and undetectable to viewers, and fully automatic, delivered by a system that can identify in advance when ads need to be replaced. A system with these capabilities can make linear programming delivered via OTT achieve its full revenue potential.
The Right Technology
You may think that targeted and dynamic ad insertion isn’t widely deployed because it is labour intensive, with extensive time required to insert metadata markers and format content. However, current technology can automatically insert accurate metadata at the outset, thereby enabling all consequential actions of ad replacement.
Targeted advertising is no longer unachievable, as the technology is there to fulfill the consumer demand for true ad engagement.