People are spending more time streaming content. Should marketer budgets follow?

What you should consider before investing in CTV

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In 2021, Americans streamed almost 15 million years’ worth of content across subscription and ad-supported platforms. The marketing industry has noticed:  New research claims 51% of global marketers plan  to increase their Connected TV (CTV) spend in the upcoming year. 

Marketers are fueling growth in CTV, but mileage will vary

Analysts forecast that TV screen advertising spend will increase by more than $14 billion in the next four years. Those numbers are large, but they don’t necessarily mean the channel is right for your next campaign. As a smart marketer, you know it’s less about the Jetsons and more about the Joneses for most audiences, so here’s what to keep in mind before considering CTV for your next campaign.

Every channel has nuances, and while CTV is growing on both the audience and brand side, there are a few important medium-specific items to consider before deciding whether to go all in, or not, with this channel. 

  • What is our audience’s mindset when engaging with CTV? Consider your audience’s mindset when they’re likely engaging with entertainment content versus heads down business production work. Depending on their behavior (i.e., fully engaged versus passively engaged), you may not receive the types of conversions your brand is focused on. For instance, research states 74% of streaming consumers want content that reflects their mood, when you consider that 
  • What’s our unique opportunity for ROI? Depending on your marketing goal, CTV may or may not be right for your business. If brand awareness is a goal for entering a new market, CTV could be appealing and appropriate. If you’re looking to generate MQLs for your pipeline, more affordable, quicker-turn options are available.
  • Have we had success with similar formats? If your brand has had success with a content format with a natural extension into CTV environments, that could be a strong indicator of a good fit. But if you have yet to find success in this space, consider piloting a concept on YouTube before diving into the deep end with CTV programming. Consider the environment and if you’re not already having success with video formats in digital channels where burdens of production are lower and cost to learnings are more efficient. If you have a winning idea, an extension could make tons of sense, if you don’t, experimentation on a digital platform first could make more sense.
  • What’s the way in for our brand? The knee-jerk reaction for getting into a popular, new platform is usually, “We need to be there.” There’s nothing wrong with that mentality, but also ask yourselves the following questions: 
    • Do we have the resources to create content in a highly visual medium? 
    • What platforms within CTV are most aligned with our brand and our audience’s interests?
    • Are there any potential partners we could work with to enhance our effort? 
    • Would product placement, sponsorships or co-creation be more fruitful than advertising?

Deploying an internal survey to your key stakeholders can help you answer these capability questions – and deploying audience research can help you discover the demand (or lack of demand) for CTV from your audiences. Depending on what the data shows, you may see that CTV is exactly right – or wrong – for your business at this moment in time.

TL;DR: There’s always temptation to chase the latest trends or invest in the hottest platforms – but if you analyze your audience’s needs and behaviors and map them against your organization’s capabilities and goals, you’ll be able to make confident strategic decisions rooted in data – and not fear missing out.

Unsure of your audience’s media consumption habits? Wondering the best way to engage with them? Reach out to us for more info.


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