Google Unveils Frequency Caps For CTV Ads, Covers 92% Of Ad-Supported Universe

As part of a major push to help advertisers control the reach and frequency of people they target via connected TV (CTV) ad campaigns, Google this morning unveiled a new feature enabling them to cap the number of times someone sees their ads, at least in the part of the CTV universe that Google controls.

“Viewers won’t see your ad more than they should as they navigate across YouTube, Hulu or any of their other favorite CTV apps,” Google Director of Global Video Solutions Marvin Renaud writes in a post on its blog this morning, emphasizing: “This more user-centric approach lowers your risk of triggering ad fatigue.”

Controlling reach and frequency -- and especially capping how frequently consumers see an ad -- has long been one of the Holy Grails sought by Madison Avenue. And frequency capping has become even more important as new platforms emerge that can expose a consumer to commercials that weren’t necessarily part of linear TV planning, because it creates both inefficiency for marketing budgets, as well as annoyance for consumers. 



Google’s Renaud makes a point of noting that the new CTV frequency capping feature is being rolled out just in time for the Super Bowl, which is interesting, since so many brands utilize Google’s YouTube platform to plug their Super Bowl spots, before and after the game, in order to generate residual impressions, buzz and word-of-mouth.

In terms of the universe Google will actually enable control frequency caps for, it includes any streaming apps available through its “Display & Video 360” media-buying platform, including YouTube, obviously, but also most of the major ones like Hulu, ESPN, etc.

Google estimates the platform covers 92% of ad-supported CTV households.

Like most of its metrics, Google’s data comes from its own walled garden, so it is essentially grading its own homework when it comes to reach and frequency delivery. On the plus side, it enables marketers and agencies to calculate the unique reach of their ads in a 100% privacy-compliant way.

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