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Leverage TV Viewership Data to Access “Unreachable” Audiences

Thu, Feb. 23, 2017 | By: Alina Lacey-Varona


Netflix’s remarkable quarterly gains in 2016 Q4 (the largest in its history) should be a strong indicator of Advanced TV’s upward trajectory. Ten years after its U.S. streaming video debut, more than half of Americans were watching streaming TV across a variety of content providers such as Netflix, Amazon, and Hulu. From 2015 to 2016, that meant a 47.8% jump, according to eMarketer.

While the myriad reasons for this shift have been explained ad nauseam by experts, bloggers, journalists, and researchers, what many brands and advertisers are still yearning for is not the “why,” but the “how.” How do they build brand affinity among audiences who are increasingly turning to streaming media and novel pay schemes to actively avoid advertising (e.g. HBO and YouTube)?

Some have advocated for “a good, cheap, advertising-supported online content provider of quality content.” The kicker is that even if this did exist, or if current content providers were ad-supported, it’s more than likely that the intended viewer would not actually see the ad. Seventy-seven percent of those who watch an average of four hours of TV per day watch with a second device in the room or in their hand; often shifting their gaze from the big screen to the second screen. This seemingly innocuous behavior presents serious challenges to TV advertising. When adding a second screen for a solo viewer, even noticing TV ads drops from 90% to 75%.  

Knowing this, our advice to brands is to be nimble and quick, and adjust their advertising strategy. Instead of pining after ad-supported alternatives to popular premium services, try a totally new approach. Innovative new technology creates opportunities to leverage viewership data to capture audience attention on second-screen devices while they are consuming non-ad supported content.

Tremor Video has partnered with Alphonso to bring this tactic to fruition. The moment eyes turn to the second screen, Alphonso can retarget live TV viewers on a 1-to-1 basis within a millisecond of viewing a particular program. By indexing all TV shows, TV channels, and OTT sites, via set-top boxes, Smart TVs, and TV Anywhere apps within its network of 40 million (and growing) unique devices, Alphonso has made it possible to utilize TV viewership data to access “unreachable” audiences.

Though they’ve been around for a while, it’s fair to say that subscription and/or on-demand streaming services are still in their early days. As new companies carve out positions for themselves in this market, brands and their video ad tech partners need to act fast but think smart about how to respond. By keeping a pulse on viewer and consumer behavior, both groups can start thinking outside of the (set-top) box and strategically leverage this new data to capitalize on emerging audiences.

Want to learn more about how companies like Alphonso retargeting works? Check out our primer on ACR tech.  


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