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Are You Wasting CTV’s Potential? 

MNTN and Mediapost Discuss How Agencies Can Unlock Better Performance and Return on Ad Spend

Are You Wasting CTV’s Potential? 

4 Min Read

Connected TV has changed how TV shows are made, how viewers consume them, and how brands think of advertising. Never before has a targetable, fully measurable form of television advertising existed—and just a few short years ago it was a pipe dream for advertisers. Today, it’s not just brands utilizing CTV ads in-house; many ad agencies are using the platform to drive their clients’ campaigns and achieve their TV ad aspirations.

But all that power isn’t achieving its full potential if you’re not using it right—it may even trip up advertisers if they aren’t applying a performance mindset.  

MNTN’s Chris Contreras, Senior VP of Customer Success, recently spoke to Mediapost about the tools, technology, and tactics that agencies and brands need to use to elevate CTV’s strengths. If you missed it, a recording of the webinar can be found here—or you can keep reading for a high-level view of some of the insights shared.

TV is Finally for Everyone

Television advertising, long seen as the pinnacle of ad prestige for brands, has often been gated behind big campaigns and bigger ad budgets. As a result, smaller to mid-sized brands were often locked out with no way to play unless they purchased cheap inventory like late-night or on struggling niche networks. All of that changed when CTV/OTT democratized TV advertising for brands. “CTV advertising has opened up the tv ad world for smaller clients, like customers who fall into local distribution chains or up-and-coming challenger brands in the CPG vertical,” noted Contreras. “Previously, there was a path to get to linear TV – you saved up a lot of marketing dollars until you could afford one big ad spot in an endemic environment.”

Because it cost so much, brands were forced to attempt to identify the risk of running one big spot versus multiple smaller spots to drive awareness and engagement—and you didn’t know how it performed at the moment, often waiting for post-campaign reports to see if it was a success, and still with no way to fully measure its effectiveness in conversions. That high-cost, high-risk environment froze a lot of brands out from chasing their TV advertising dreams. “Every brand we talk to has consistently told us that they always wanted to be on TV, but it was too cost-prohibitive. CTV opens the doors to those brands creating and fostering TV as an ad strategy. Historically that opportunity was never there before.”

Defriending Social for CTV

As more advertisers see the advantages of CTV they’ve begun pulling budgets from other marketing buckets. One of the ad channels losing the most ad dollars to CTV? Social media and paid search. A recent Digiday and MNTN survey found that 41% of participating brands are reallocating their social budgets towards CTV, the second-highest category behind linear. Contreras isn’t surprised. “Brands typically use social to drive bottom-of-funnel campaigns, but the engagement is lacking,” he points out.

“When you think of performance marketing, you think about Google and search or Facebook and social. But we think of CTV as a powerful third pillar – one that has the same reach and audience of social, but consistently outperforms it in engagement.” By operating similarly to paid search and social, advertisers have been easily making the transition over to CTV. And that’s welcome news for many brands as platforms like Facebook have faced criticism over their changes to measurement and effectiveness. By embracing CTV, agencies and advertisers are diversifying their marketing mix – all while getting better performance and return on ad spend.

Putting the Performance in TV

CTV has risen to be the premier advertising platform but some advertisers still don’t take full advantage of its capabilities—a misstep that often stems from CTV being treated like its linear TV forebear. “If you jump into CTV with a focus on branding, you’ll always fall short,” Contreras said. “You need to think about using the platform to get consumer awareness but focus on getting them to convert.” The key to driving those conversions and maximizing CTV is in applying a performance mindset.

“Many advertisers—and ad platforms—treat CTV as an extension of linear TV. When you’re just focused on impressions and reach you get what you paid for,” warns Contreras. “You have to leverage your strengths and not focus on a click-based model just for driving awareness. Instead, let’s make awareness an actual actionable insight that’s part of a performance campaign.” Contreras suggested for brands to look for advertising platforms that share the same performance mindset with a focus on reporting, insights, and success metrics and KPIs like ROAS and CPA. Additionally, it’s ideal to look for CTV advertising platforms that go one step further by giving agencies the power to build and optimize performance campaigns themselves, while providing transparent real-time measurement data for the client.

Watch the Full Webinar for More

The advertising world is notoriously competitive, and the stakes are too high to not use every tool to its best potential. Watch the full webinar to learn more tips from Contreras, including a deeper dive on best practices, tools to use, and how agencies can overcome any client hesitancy about the platform. Click here to watch the full presentation of How a Performance Mindset Elevates CTV Media Planning.