CTV Study: Connected TV Not Reaching Ad Targets

A study of advertising campaigns on connected TV shows they are not reaching consumers.

The research -- coming from ANA and Innovid, a CTV ad-tech platform -- shows the average campaign reached just 13% of the available U.S. CTV homes. The authors recommend that upwards of 100 million impressions should be used to reach 40% of the U.S. CTV homes.

Sharply rising CTV is expected to reach four-fifths of U.S homes in 2021, according to eMarketer.

The good news is that frequency of ads seen by viewers -- a constant point of concern for marketers -- was lower than generally believed: 85% of CTV homes were exposed to an ad one to two times, while 14% were exposed three to nine times.

The study -- conducted from January to April -- looked at 20 brand CTV campaigns, totaling $35 million in media spending and getting a total of 1.7 billion impressions on 169 publishers and more than 25 connected TV devices.



Brands included in the study: Honda, Walgreens, Anheuser-Busch, Southwest Airlines, Colgate, Acura, General Mills, General Motors, Subway, USAA, Jack in the Box, Whirlpool and Mastercard.

In other positive results, the effective CPM (cost per thousand viewers) on CTV was $23 -- competitive to that broadcast, which is a $36 CPM, and a just a bit higher than cable TV, at $19 CPM, according to eMarketer.

That said, the average cost per unique reach for CTV was $123. But the ANA/Innovid report said that with CTV getting better results from first- and third-party audience targeting, CTV “works harder.”

It also noted that the average publisher duplication rate was 32%, and it blamed marketers using a large number of inventory partners -- including exchanges, which tend to yield greater levels of “overlap.” At the same time, they also tend to reach a larger percentage of CTV homes.

The duplication rate is when advertisers may inadvertently bid on the same impression on a publisher's site -- which can drive up pricing.

1 comment about "CTV Study: Connected TV Not Reaching Ad Targets".
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  1. Ed Papazian from Media Dynamics Inc, July 21, 2021 at 10:46 a.m.

    Wayne, those CPMs for "linear TV" that are attributed to eMarketer are exactly those we ( Media Dynamics Inc ) published for prime time upfront buys  for 30-second messages for the 2019-20 season. These are for adult viewers not homes--or sets---reached which is what this study measured.  Needless to say, "linear TV" CPMs are higher now. 

    As for the study itself,  it found that the average for 35 CTV buys by 20 brands was that they got 60 GRPs but a reach of only 13%. This is far below what a similar number of GRPs would garner in reach for a typical "linear TV buy. Which means that many of the CTV buys in this study  probably did not properly evaluate---or even consider---maximizing reach when they were placed. This would almost certainly be the case for the programmatic buys but may also have been a problem when the publishers were dealt with directly. Since it is widely recognized that reach is more important than frequency when it comes to pushing sales, this is an important point that the sponsors of the study are making. Corrective action seems indicated.

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