I wanted to take a moment to respond to some recent chatter in the industry with this post. First, my firm CTV Advertising and myself tend to evangelize on a lot of topics in this space. We also know who to turn to when we need information. One example I’d like to quickly reference are our partners at www.futuretvads.com ( The Future TV Advertising forum). The Forum brings together advertising experts with broadcast professionals to discuss the evolution of TV Advertising. It’s a fantastic resource I’ve been raving about lately.
In regards to the aforementioned chatter, I wanted to point out some mistakes and faulty perceptions in the understanding of Connected TV consumption patterns and how these relate to the device as well as the advertising within it.
Mistake #1- Treating a Connected TV like a personal device and ignoring the nature of the living room.
There was a lot chatter this week about Apple’s potential TV endeavors. One item that was widely spoken about was the conceptual idea of a “Siri” like program for TV. This program would utilize voice command for television browsing and interaction that is intuitive. To boldly state my opinion, I think this is an excellent example of rampant over-personalization of a non-personal device. It’s an example of not abiding by the devices intrinsic nature. So, I’m going to make an example out of it.
a) Did anybody else grow up with siblings? If not, does anybody have friends who all have differing sports teams they follow? Rebellious children? A voice control remote will create absolute living room chaos! Group watching functions because there is a leadership position in control of that remote. Sometimes an authority figure. A bickering family using voice command will have that TV doing jumping jacks. A large group of friends with no “Remote” authority will create a poor UX across the board.
b) I have thumbs. It’s not difficult to use them. Any ease of use argument is…lazy. I know, I know, a tech geek like myself shouldn’t say this, but it’s true. There is a limit.
More importantly, I prefer personal choice anyhow. Anybody else notice how with Siri you no longer pick the App you are using? That the info is fed from Apple without choosing what sources it comes from? I prefer my freedom of choice to find the best Apps and sites myself, rather than saving my thumbs a workout. That’s me and how I choose to consume. If Apple has a Siri styled control for TV it’s one more barrier to personal choice.
a) This warrants a post in and of itself. First, ads still need to be targeted to both an individual as well as a group. At this point there is no way to tell if there is one person in a room watching television or fifteen. This creates targeting differences from any of the other devices. At any time, any number of individuals can be in the room. You are not just targeting an individual. This is important to keep in mind. It’s still television advertising in other words.
b) RFI, polling and couponing create an amazing functionality for interactive TV advertisements. They need to be optimized in differing ways however, from other more personal devices. In a group setting there are calls to action that can work and those that won‘t. There are even some calls to action that can be used to draw groups of watchers into a conversation/interaction together for greater mindshare. Always remember though, the TV is the only connected device that embraces a multi-person audience.
c) I love pre-roll as much as the next. I also love simple display Ads, but there are some incredibly unique and novel advertising placements to consider within the device. This platform allows for an amazing amount of creativity in developing new ad spots so start your engines now. I know we have.
These last three elements should be considered carefully as there are a lot of sales jobs out there that will state otherwise. Be wary.