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Everything you need to know about Connected TV in 2021

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Connected TV advertising is undoubtedly one of the most talked about emerging technologies in digital at the moment. There is so much great information out there, but that’s just it, there is so much information to piece together and you can often lose sight of its value in the first place. 

The Reload team has pulled together this article to give you the lowdown on what it is, why it is one of the most talked about digital trends in the industry at the moment, and based on our experience, when to consider CTV in your strategy and our top tips for doing it well.

What is Connected TV?

Connected TV, or CTV, is video content viewed on your TV screen delivered through an internet connection. 

CTV is the means to an end, it’s the device you use to consume certain content. The content you might consume via a Connected TV could be:

  • Netflix or Disney+ (SVOD: Subscription video on demand)
  • 7Plus, 9Now, 10Play, SBS On Demand (BVOD: Broadcast video on demand)
  • YouTube (AVOD: Ad supported video on demand)

See the below graphic for examples that you’ll be familiar with.

Why is Connected TV So Hot Right Now for Advertisers?

Advertising via CTV is the use of video ads through any of the devices mentioned above, across content that is BVOD or AVOD. Yes this means full screen, high impact, video advertising, but there are some particular trends to call out as to why it’s all over our headlines.

  1. It simply meets needs. As a consumer you have control of watching what you want, when you want. As an advertiser, you get the impact, the attention and the scale of linear TV with an added digital lens over it.
  2. The pandemic drastically accelerated its consumption. 8 in 10 Australian’s have access to a CTV and half of these consumers prefer to view video content via their CTV rather than smaller devices such as phones. This is the opportunity to reach nearly 7 million Australians, with 30% of users doing so daily. 
  3. This acceleration also has led to very quick advancements in technology. From highly advanced ways of measuring real impact, to performance based digital reporting, greater ad personalisation and audience mapping capabilities, the tech is evolving rapidly. For businesses looking to give CTV advertising a go, you won’t be flying blind, the industry has already provided significant learnings despite being in its infancy.

Overall, this increased consumption has meant increased opportunities for advertisers. We’ve already started taking advantage of the scale available – publishers’ video expenditure attributed to Connected TV’s increased from 23% to 41% over the last 15 months.

The Benefits and Value of Connected TV in Your Advertising Strategy

  1. Lower barrier to entry for brand building – we can now buy this high impact brand building tactic programmatically. We can run CTV advertising for brands with less budget than you may think, and no locked in media schedules.  

  2. Ability to leverage data to take your $ further – buying it programmatically means more transparency over performance, optimisation opportunity, attribution and serving data. We can also use Addressable TV technology (selectively target audience segments that are modelled by lots of data points such as demographics, geographics, 1st/2nd/3rd party data sets and more), minimising wasted spend.

  3. It is still scaling – We haven’t capped our consumer reach of CTV yet, we will continue to see usage and advertising opportunity trend upwards. This is particularly expected across the free/ad supported networks like 9Now, rather than subscription services such as Netflix. IAS (Integral Ad Science) research tells us consumers may start to have subscription fatigue, with 76% of respondents reporting that they are willing to see ads in exchange for watching free streaming videos. Finally, the majority (62%) plan to add free video streaming services in the next 12 months, we’re not slowing down anytime soon.

  4. Same benefits as traditional TV ads – Remember that what we know about Linear TV consumption rolls over to CTV, for example, TV is more likely to be viewed with others in your household, meaning our ‘one’ impression likely gets in front of multiple people.

  5. More share of voice in ad breaks – BVOD services (eg.7Plus, 10Play, SBS On Demand) tend to boast shorter ad breaks than linear TV ad breaks, meaning less ads shown during a program and more spotlight on those that do show. 

  6. Reach those younger cord cutters – CTV helps us to reach those who have or are on their way to cutting ties with aerial TV (also known as ‘cord cutters’), an increasingly harder to reach audience with linear TV advertising. This audience is typically younger viewers, 25-34.

Tips on Doing Connected TV Advertising Well


Have you been wooed over all the hype, growth and benefits of CTV? If you’re thinking about testing CTV in your advertising strategy, here are the top tips we discuss with our clients: 

  1. Plan Well. In a CTV’s campaign lifespan, our digital media team spends the most amount of time getting the planning phase right – having a crystal clear game plan and mapping out the criteria for measuring success is going to set you up for a stronger outcome. Furthermore, be realistic with your expectations of its role in the wider funnel, digital video primarily works for impacting brand awareness and brand perceptions, secondary to that comes the bottom of funnel KPIs. 
  2. Don’t forget about quality creative. Consumers still want high quality video content, approximately 65% of a video’s impact for each impression is driven by the quality of creative, the remaining third is all the other bells and whistles.
  3. Consumers want contextual relevance. If the ad is relevant to the content a user is engaging with, consumers are more likely to view an ad to completion. Consider this when applying the targeting.

The Trending Topics with CTV in the Wider Industry Right Now

This all sounds amazing right? Like with any accelerated trend, it’s not all roses just yet. There are a few topics under Connected TV being discussed in the industry right now that you should be aware of.

  1. How subject are we to ad fraud? The 2020 Global insights report by Double Verify states that buyers working with programmatic platforms without any third party verifications are 10x more likely to become exposed to fraudulent inventory on CTV when compared to buying with publishers directly. On the plus side, as the Australian CTV market is dominated by premium broadcasters, there are extremely low rates of CTV fraud. Our recommended best practice is to control what CTV environments you are showing in. This is where our programmatic team will set up access deals with specific networks.

  2. How to know or prove it is successful? This answer is very much evolving everyday, industry wide, we find the top measurement tools are brand lift surveys, reporting metrics (clicks, views etc), delivery (impressions, CPM), ad ratings (R&F, in-target %), and online conversion tracking as the top five. 

  3. How do we report on effectiveness when success is primarily measured by delivery metrics? IAB’s research proves that many brands still use delivery metrics as their top KPIs for campaign success, such as reach and frequency, video views,, and CPM, but there needs to be a higher focus on impact metrics such as brand awareness uplift, recall, uplift in direct site visits, sales lift, purchase intent lift and more. This is still a challenge and an ongoing discussion in the Australian market.

That’s a wrap on all things Connected TV! If you’re looking to advance your advertising strategy, whether the goal be brand building, reaching new audiences, or digital channel expansion, Reload can provide recommendations on CTV in your advertising plan.

Reload Team
Reload Team

Sharing the latest industry topics, company news and behind the scenes.

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