Can Campaigns Capitalize on the Rise of OTT?

December 30, 2019 | By PREMION

Ad-insertable OTT streaming video could be the “it” channel for political marketers in 2020 — or at least that’s what some vendors are pitching campaigns and groups.

With digital targeting tightening up on some platforms, the next best option in terms of price and capability could be over-the-top streaming video, which is increasing penetration across the United States.

Some 97 million homes now have a connected TV device — “equating to over 75% of all homes in the United States, and surpassing cable TV households,” according to a recent report by the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB), an industry trade group. 

“This could be the OTT cycle, in part, thanks to Google changing their rules, and now the fact that Facebook is going to do the same and crackdown on advertising,” said Sam Osborne Reynolds, a GOP digital practitioner-turned senior director at The E.W. Scripps Company.

The definition of OTT inventory can differ between vendors. In a recent report, the IAB defined it as “video existing either within the confines of the big screen (through a connected TV device or Smart TV) or conversely, streamed to any screen (on smartphones, tablets, and desktops).”

It’s delivered through “various internet protocol (IP)-enabled devices that can be accessed via a wide range of options, from HDMI sticks (Roku, Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV, Chromecast), gaming consoles, Blu-ray players, and connected television sets.”

In the same report, the IAB said: “OTT streaming video presents an opportunity to speak to an audience that is increasingly difficult to reach through traditional media channels.” Brands advertisers have been using it to reach cord-cutters not targetable through traditional television.

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