Let’s start by defining what OTT Advertising is. OTT stands for “over-the-top” and refers to a media service that provides online content as a standalone product. OTT media is not only limited to on-demand video as it also includes messaging services and music/video streaming services. A couple of good examples of OTT providers are Netflix and Spotify. OTT advertising can be seen on many different devices: Smart TV’s, streaming devices (Roku, Apple TV, Amazon FireStick), desktop, mobile, and many more. The astounding reach of OTT platforms has caught the attention of marketers and has now become a major arena to push messaging for companies.
The days of satellite dishes and cable boxes are slowly becoming a relic of the past as new generations are transitioning to OTT platforms. The invention of the digital video recorder, DVR, in 1999 was one of the biggest draws for families to get cable tv or to switch to providers that had that capability. However, now that many TV shows and movies can be viewed on-demand through various stream providers, many consumers are cutting ties to their cable companies. Streaming providers are also offering more channel customizations at a much lower price point. By 2021, marketing analysis shows that about 73% of United States internet users will use an OTT video service at least once per month. With this huge market shift, digital marketing has started to follow suit and jump into the OTT advertising space.
How do marketers utilize OTT advertising?
Streaming and smart device usage has grown at an exponential rate since their launch in the early 2000s. The average American will spend ten minutes finding a video to watch and almost six hours per day viewing said videos. All this screen time provides the perfect opportunity for marketers to capitalize on campaign messaging. Ad traffickers can layer in-market data layers from first-party and third-party vendors to target viewers that are in the buying process for a certain make/model or class of vehicle. These insights allow marketers the ability to tailor their campaign messaging and hit target audiences.
Another benefit to delivering OTT ads is that they can be non-skippable ads, allowing for a very high completion rate, often exceeding 90%. This ensures that dealer ads that run on OTT platforms will be seen through their entirety and allows for higher opportunities for goal conversions. When running OTT campaigns, it is vital to add conversion or tracking pixels not only to track performance but also increase campaign attribution. At the end of the day, dealerships need to sell vehicles in order to meet their bottom line and keep the doors open. They need to have the ability to track the performance of their OTT campaign(s) to show they are driving digital traffic that converts into leads and then to actual vehicle sales.
OTT marketing is at its forefront and the capabilities are ever-growing. The use of mobile devices and the ability to stream from almost any location in the world gives a multitude of openings to push marketing campaigns and messaging.