As connected TV (CTV) becomes a widespread mode of media consumption, digital marketers are taking notice of the opportunities in connected TV advertising. Becoming a champion of CTV will help you win over more client dollars, and it’ll ensure your team is aligned with strategies that reflect CTV’s full potential.

In our recent survey of over 200 agency and brand advertising decision makers we found that advertisers are increasingly willing to pull dollars from online and offline to put toward CTV advertising. In some cases, however, they are not sure how to approach the channel in a way that shows both team members and clients its true potential. We conducted this survey in partnership with ad industry business intelligence firm Advertiser Perceptions to learn about the benefits and opportunities that CTV presents.

Are you ready to champion the CTV channel? Here are 4 reasons why advertisers are finding CTV gives them a competitive advantage:

CTV Advertising is Cost-Effective

The fast growth of CTV offers independent agencies opportunities to reach or even exceed their clients’ advertising goals, and be seen as a strategic partner that delivers greater value. To the benefit of agencies, the cost of entry for CTV ads is much lower than with linear TV. Traditional TV spots are notoriously expensive because advertisers are paying for an ad that is at the mercy of the network. As a result, linear advertising can be prohibitively expensive, especially for small or mid-size agencies.

CTV advertising is more cost-effective because it provides access to the open internet, enhanced targeting, and inventory selection. You can deliver ads to hard-to-reach and highly specific audiences, improving audience quality. This increases ad relevance to match consumer preferences and also helps to bridge the gap between other online and offline behaviours.

CTV leverages similar campaign setup and targeting as other programmatic media buys like display, native and audio, which means that, like with any programmatic campaign, you can assess progress against goals and metrics while a campaign is live. This means there’s plenty of opportunity for optimization along the way, which will enable you to maximize the impact of your ad dollars. This is a big differentiator from linear, because with linear ads you are waiting weeks for a report, making it too late to make in flight adjustments.

CTV Has a High Adoption Rate

According to the IAS Streaming Wars report which surveyed US consumers, CTV is nearly universally adopted. Today, 88% of consumers have access to a CTV device. The rise of CTV has created a phenomenon known as “cord-cutting.” This term refers to the pattern of viewers who are cancelling their subscriptions to cable or satellite television services, or dropping paid television channels—in favour of TV content that is served via the internet.

Cord-cutting can be attributed to the flexibility and consumer control that CTV offers viewers. Streamed content is a much more economical choice when compared to traditional cable or satellite, and it has consumer appeal because it allows viewers to watch what they want, when they want. Given this, the already high adoption rate of CTV is expected to continue to increase.

Time spent on CTV has increased as well. In 2018, the average daily viewing in the US was 46 minutes. Today, CTV viewers are watching 3 hours of programming per day. With so many consumers embracing streamed content and spending increasing amounts of time with it, it’s no surprise that advertisers are spending more on this channel. In fact, Our Ad Perceptions report found that advertisers had a 56% year-over-year increase in forecasted spend last year.

Connected TV Advertising Has Unique Benefits

CTV is not only a new channel to advertise on, but it is a unique one. Our Ad Perceptions report found that 75% of marketers believe CTV is a cutting-edge way to promote their brands, and agencies leverage their CTV capabilities as a way to market themselves as innovative. Few channels can differentiate themselves in this way.

Coupled with the fact that findings from Integral Ad Science indicate advertisers can reach more than 90% of U.S. adults with CTV advertising, it isn’t hard to see why this is a channel to champion. CTV comes with many benefits related to audience, measurement, targeting and the viewing experience that is not readily available with linear TV advertising.

For example, viewers watching CTV are more engaged because they’ve made the active choice to watch the programming, and they do not have the option to fast forward or skip any ads. Additionally, these viewers do not always have traditional TV or cable subscriptions—enabling the advertiser to reach these incremental users.

CTV is further differentiated from linear because along with precise targeting, it offers more precise measurement and attribution. CTV advertising empowers advertisers to unlock data that was once not possible with linear TV. With CTV, you can proactively learn who is interacting with and viewing your ads. From there, you can optimize and retarget accordingly. Unlike with linear, CTV enables you to retarget users based on impressions, or retarget users who have engaged with other campaigns.

CTV Provides Impressive Rate of Increase

The rate of increase in CTV spend is impressive—even more so for advertisers with above average CTV experience versus those who are newer to the channel. Our Ad Perceptions report found that advertisers with 3 or more years of CTV experience spend more dollars targeting this device. This group has a very healthy +40% year-over-year expected increase.

This data shows that experience with CTV brings success, which in turn drives more dollars. In fact, our report further found that those who spend more on CTV are more likely to experience greater success. And those who have success invest more dollars in CTV—helping to put their brands at a competitive advantage.

How do you gain this experience and competitive edge with CTV? Build your confidence in executing CTV campaigns by leveraging your existing teams, using education to build knowledge, and shifting your budget strategically so that you can onboard CTV with ease.

Learn about the misconceptions around this channel, so you can educate your clients effectively, and answer any questions or concerns they may have with confidence. Owning enthusiasm around this channel will enable you to champion it for your client, specifically as you pull or redirect linear TV budgets, and integrate CTV into your media mix.

We’ve released a comprehensive guide covering the connected TV opportunity for independent agencies who are looking to thrive in 2021. Get your copy of the report, Connected TV, The Independent Agency Opportunity, here.